How Iot Is Jumpstarting a Interconnected world
Internet of Things ( IoT) is being billed as one of the biggest emerging tech disruptions that will have large scale ramifications on individuals to enterprises
Internet of Things (IoT) is by far the biggest disruption the tech space has seen in the recent times. It is on the threshold of snowballing into a major trend. For the uninitiated the Internet of Things (IoT) might look bewildering. But once you dig in deep, one will realize the possible ramifications IoT will usher in the days ahead. Simply put IoT is the ability to seamlessly connect different things- people, machines to cars to anything that has network functionality. If you go by common sense, IoT is next logical evolution in leveraging connectivity far greater good and remote management. Its all about making human lives and devices more intelligent and in the bargain we are harvesting a whole lot of goodies out of it. Lets go into specifics and look at defining IoT (we need to say that there is a whole lot of definition flavors in the internet, but let’s stick to one for Texas Instruments).
According to Jim Chase Strategic marketing Texas Instruments who has put in 27 years oin the high tech industry, he summarizes IoT in white paper that IoT is generally thought of as connecting things to the Internet and using that connection to provide some kind of useful remote monitoring or control of those things. This definition of IoT is limited, and references only part of the IoT evolution. It is basically a rebranding of the existing Machine to Machine (M2M) market of today. IoT in its culmination – where we live in the data is defined as one that creates an intelligent, invisible network fabric that can be sensed, controlled and programmed. IoT-enabled products employ embedded technology that allows them to communicate, directly or indirectly, with each other or the Internet.
This is in fact defines IoT in a true sense. It is about enabling and empowering devices via the Internet and changing the very functionality of the devices. Its something like Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI), one enables the otherwise limited functionality hardware devices into more agile and intelligent devices.
THE IOT OPPORTUNITY
Any conversation on an emerging technology like IoT invokes multiple perceptive feedbacks. Some may call it hype and some may call it a potential disruptor of things. But as we look at the IoT progression at this point in time, we need to say its already started to impact the software services industry in a big way. Many of the leading services providers are going aggressive and have an aggressive IoT play.
In terms of the overall opportunity, a Gartner forecast said that that connected things will be in use worldwide will reach 20.8 bn by 2020. In 2016, Services are dominated by the professional category (in which businesses contract with external providers in order to design, install and operate IoT systems), however connectivity services (through communications service providers) and consumer services will grow at a faster pace.
Industry experts say that there is a tremendous potential of Value addition with IoT to the estimate of $3.9T globally, still quoting on the lower end of the McKinsey report, but we have barely scratched the surface. IOT is all about business ROI, application of
Right now, service providers are using incubation models to think big, start small and then scale up to solve big-impact problems using IoT
the right technologies in monitoring, automating and predicting situations at a significantly lower ‘Total Cost’ of what is being done today.
Experts believe that the biggest impact of IoT is that the entire business models are transforming more towards a “Product as a Service” model, changing from Capex to Opex. Taking example of one successful IoT model that Michelin tires have done for truck fleets. They monitor the tire pressure, quality of truck tires and ensuring optimum fuel usage, essentially offering them a model of renting out tires and charging based on per km basis. So instead of selling tires now, Michelin has gone to enabling the transportation business. This works great for truck fleet management companies, even if paying a bit extra. This works out great for Michelin as they now have a recurring and higher revenue stream and more visibility on their business. All this would not have been possible with a bunch of temperature, tire pressure, road condition sensors in the tires connected by GSM/GPRS to a cloud platform. A similar services model is now being taken up by GE using the GE Predix platform to monitor and maintain aircraft engines.
IOT AND SERVICE PROVIDERS
IoT is being repetitively referred to in multiple forums both nationally and internationally as the next big wave after internet and mobile that will affect our day to day lives. The way we do business contemporarily will have been
Experts believe that the biggest impact of IoT is that the entire business models are transforming more towards a “Product as a Service” model, changing from Capex to Opex
impacted hugely on the evolution of IOT in the times to come. The communication of things is changing drastically and is evolving to a common standard globally on phenomenal scale.
Experts say that a lot of technology companies, product companies, services companies and consulting companies are investing their money in adopting new Open and Global standards for evolution of IOT which is getting immensely popular and is one of the key ingredients in driving IOT led adoption.
The wish list and hype of IOT has been existing for some time now but now we are seeing new models and solutions that are evolving and are being put into a proof of concepts. Some of the manufacturing, energy & utility, Oil & gas, Transportation, health care are some of the key verticals that have evaluated IOT for some of their business optimization and operational efficiency enhancement. As a solution provider Wipro is also seeing an increase in customers wanting to evaluate some of the used cases and address critical pain points.
Despite the huge opportunity, there are numerous challenges the services providers need to tide over in the IoT space IoT is a relatively complex eco-system with sensors, specific protocols like BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) Zigbee, communication protocols, IoT gateways and middleware platforms.
Experts also believe that there will be a significant uptick in IoT adoption as we move forward in 2018. As adoption picks up, one will also see the ironing out of various issues like the lack of interoperable technologies and standards, data and information management issues, privacy and security concerns, the skills to manage IoT’s growing complexity, and the lack of proven ROI/ monetization models.
Right now, service providers are using incubation models to think big, start small and then scale up to solve big-impact problems using IoT. But they start out by working with their partners and customers to prototype and pilot solutions to test the efficacy of IoT technologies in addressing business objectives and driving value. It takes a strong partner ecosystem to bring these solutions to market. As part of this engagement model, prospects and customers are increasingly experimenting and discovering together. Service providers are working closely with businesses to bring several points of view together with the primary goal of unearthing value for their end-customers.
THE ROAD AHEAD
While there continues to be a lot of buzz around IoT, experts believe that IoT adoption is still nascent. Going forward, industrial IoT applications will get faster traction even though most of the IoT buzz has largely centered on consumer devices and wearables. This can be attributed to enterprises being more inclined to test and invest in IoT applications that drive margin expansion instead of IoT applications that have a dependency on new revenue streams.
So far, using IoT and the possibilities that it presents have primarily dwelt on improving efficiencies, eliminating waste and achieving cost control. While this will continue to be a significant driver in the evolution of IoT, the ‘killer app’ will come from previously unseen revenue streams emerging from its adoption.
As IoT technology goes mainstream, concerns that need to be addressed include the lack of interoperable technologies and standards, data and information management issues, privacy and security concerns, the skills to manage IoT’s growing complexity, and the lack of proven ROI/monetization models.