Businesses from all verticals are seeing the potential opportunities of exploiting the Internet of Things (IoT) space. IoT adoption continues to grow and researchers at Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) forecast that there will be 26 times more connected things than people by 2020.
Going into 2017, there are a wide range of IoT technologies and skills to be mastered by organisations that will impact business strategy, risk management, and technical areas such as architecture and network design.
There are also several IoT trends forecast for 2017, and the top predictions include:
1. Security will remain a challenge but IoT will carry on expanding
Despite security risks and the fact that security solutions are fragmented, the IoT market will continue to develop. Many “things” use simple processors and operating systems that may not support advanced security methodologies. Companies will have to consider new and more advanced ways to secure their data, and reduce vulnerabilities.
2. Recruitment will be a recurring issue
For organisations implementing digital transformation initiatives, sourcing the right technical skills to build and run the Internet of Things can be a struggle. In 2017, finding skilled technicians, data analysts, and security professionals will be an ongoing barrier to IoT implementation.
3. IoT will impact the marketing world
The Internet of Things will move beyond industrial applications in business and into other areas. It has the potential to become an exceptional digital marketing tool in the near future as it enables businesses to collect and analyse high quality data about consumers’ preferences, product experiences, and habits. This can be used to develop a 360 degree view of the customer, allowing for greater segmentation and personalisation.
4. Standards will still be lacking
When it comes to IoT, there is no shared language, data format, or system, but rather an excess of competing standards. Although IoT devices need to interoperate and communicate, standardisation is likely to remain a challenge in 2017. Companies, industry bodies, and other stakeholders such as government, must work together to improve standards and interoperability.
5. ‘Things’ will become smarter
The ‘things’ or connected devices in ‘Internet of Things’ will become more sophisticated as they are required to perform increasingly complex tasks. IoT will evolve beyond smart sensors and basic monitoring to connecting and controlling devices such as robots, drones, and autonomous vehicles. Increasingly advanced IoT systems will also leverage the power of AI to create ever smarter systems in homes, offices, factories, and medical facilities.
While Industrial applications of IoT are more advanced than consumer-facing applications, the technology is starting to gain traction in all industries. It is expected that there will be a steady transition towards IoT next year as more companies realise the possible benefits of improved management and operations.