By: Kevin Williams
Categories: Money Savings
One tongue-in-cheek benefit of IoT technology for business is that internet-connected coffee makers will enhance our productivity by always having the perfect cup waiting for us at any given time. However, the reality is that the IoT will soon have an impact on virtually every aspect of our lives, and this is especially true in business.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a massive network of smart devices that collect and transmit data through the internet. Nearly 20.4 billion "things" will be a part of the IoT by 2020. In addition, AT&T’s Cybersecurity Insights Report recently estimated that 85 percent of global enterprises are already in the process of implementing some form of IoT technology in their business processes. Some of the global brands that have already developed IoT platforms to support businesses include:
Amazon Web Services
ThingWorx IoT Platform
Cisco IoT Cloud Connect
Salesforce IoT Cloud
Oracle Integrated Cloud
The type of solutions the IoT will provide include application development, hardware development, systems integration, data storage, energy storage, and security. These investments will total $6 trillion and are expected to generate a $13 trillion return-on-investment by 2025. The main benefits these services will provide are threefold:
Lower operations costs – Data transmitted through IoT-enabled business technologies will result in efficiencies that lower the cost of doing business. For example, if a piece of hardware is malfunctioning or in need of maintenance, the business operations team will be instantly notified so they can rectify the situation immediately before it becomes a costly problem.
Increased productivity – Analyzing information about business operations will identify opportunities to reduce downtime and increase output. For example, cloud-connected communication will allow for the secure transmission of sensitive information so that teams can coordinate their efforts in real-time no matter where individual team members are.
New markets and innovation – IoT technology will allow companies to develop new products and enter new markets that previously would’ve been inaccessible or too costly to pursue. For example, Big Data trends in digital marketing and eCommerce now allow retailers to make more extensive use of online marketplaces as opposed to brick-and- mortar storefronts. This lowers the barrier for new companies to enter the market while also making it easier for companies to reach specific niches through targeted ads as opposed to expensive mass marketing.
The IoT will certainly have a monumental impact on business in the not-too-distant future. Its influence is already being felt in industries all over the globe. No matter what your take on the IoT and the benefits it offers, it’s going to become a regular part of doing business and will remain this way for a long time.