IoT is an incredibly varied and complex market, and generalisations are difficult. MCA Associate Member, Vodafone, have recently launched their next Barometer Report, researching the broad trends now expected to shape enterprises and SME’s using IoT.
- From “if” to “how”
Within the next two years, the majority of businesses will be using IoT. Just adopting IoT will no longer be a differentiator — it’s part of the IT landscape and digital strategy of every business. The decision to take is how best to use it. That may be as a highly visible technology that’s driving service quality, revenue or process efficiency. Or it may be invisible to most employees, as an intrinsic part of the business environment: quietly and autonomously monitoring the health of vehicles, updating digital signage, optimising building systems.
- From “technology” to “business outcome”
IoT will increasingly be treated as indistinguishable from business processes; it will be part of the fabric of the organisation. IoT will be seen as an intrinsic feature of a modern warehouse system, company car fleet or security solution, for example. We expect business-led approaches to procuring and managing IoT — including end-to-end outsourcing — will dominate, in order to drive measurable business results and more effective governance. At the same time, we expect IoT, cloud, mobile and analytics will increasingly be conceived of and purchased together as elements of an integrated solution.
- From “caution” to “action”
IoT may be managed as part of the business, but just like cloud or mobile, it’s still a technology, and cybersecurity will remain a major consideration. Today, IoT security is dominated by fear of the unknown; we expect that this will shift as businesses recognise the value of data and the need to manage it. IoT will be absorbed into overall IT security practices and businesses will invest in actively protecting it as a mission-critical asset.
- From “optimise” to “engage”
We’re already seeing that IoT applications of all kinds are not only driving operational and process improvements, but having a noticeable impact on the employee and customer experience. As businesses increasingly look at building IoT into their products and services, certain sectors will naturally take the lead in revolutionising how they engage with their customers, among them automotive (through the connected car) and healthcare (through mhealth).