For quite some time now, the focus of businesses to spot opportunities and step up their game in the Internet space has been on how many people have access to the Internet, how are they using it and the various “W”s of when, why, where etc. But gradually, with the proliferation of devices equipped with the capability to access the Internet, the introduction of smaller, cheaper sensors, and the decreasing technology costs, the spotlight is now on communication between objects. Thus, business models need to break the habit of being solely adapted towards the “Internet of People” and embrace the blue ocean that exists due to the “Internet of Things”.
The IoT (Internet of Things) exists in the industrial space (autonomous machines equipped with sensors), business space (marketing analytics and Big Data) and the consumer space (“smart” wearables and appliances). This economy is waiting to be tapped by businesses, who can create a world of new value with the help of intelligent and well-networked devices.
And companies are increasingly attuning themselves to the IoT trend in the automotive, healthcare, energy and food sectors. One such comprehensive outlook on the IoT’s impact on a variety of industries is given by AIG in its whitepaper titled “The Internet of Things: Evolution or Revolution?”
Given the context, let’s have a look at how the IoT could change the way we live:
1. An assisting environment:
It’s not about convenience anymore. The IoT will help devices assist humans in areas like energy management, healthcare and transportation. Power grids will be revolutionized with “smart” meters and appliances that collect, monitor, and analyze our everyday electricity usage data to help humans save energy and money. Fitness trackers will help develop diet plans and schedule training based on the user’s activity patterns. Your car will offer you the shortest possible routes after checking your calendar for scheduled meetings and inform the third-party if you are going to be late.
2. Smart buying, smarter selling:
Retailers can utilize the upcoming beacon technology to more efficiently collect customer data and track in-store actions, which will lead to more personalized offers and improved in-store experiences for consumers. For example, Hugo Boss has heat sensors fitted in its clothing stores to spot specific areas where customer traffic is high in order to stock premium products accordingly. Smart price tags could help introduce dynamic in-store pricing based on demand and inventory level. Considering the increase in data this will cause, it is only logical to assume that there will be a large increase in the use of data analysis software. Multivariate data analysis software like that provided by CAMO is able to process this customer data as it can produce coherent data patterns relative to multiple factors.
3. A smarter life:
The day will come when a smart home system will suggest recipes for you based on what you have in your fridge. Refrigerator filters would arrive when needed without any human intervention. Shopping lists and grocery orders would be customized based on weekly exercise and nutrition goals.
4. Safer, easier commuting:
Navigation routing will become more efficient with smart automotive systems. They will implement self-driving functionality and automated cruising after combining data related to other vehicles’ speed and maneuvering. Businesses should think about the huge opportunity to improve logistical routing in public transportation.
5. Enhanced security and emergency controls:
The IoT will prevent industrial hazards through continuous monitoring of liquids in warehouses, radiation levels in nuclear power stations, levels of explosive gases in chemical plants etc. Home security is bound to improve with sensors that record abnormal patterns in the event of a burglary and instantly message you about the same. The cost of such home security systems is decreasing with time, and thus there is a huge market waiting.
Although there are business challenges such as customer privacy, property rights, managing vast amounts of collected data and over-reliance on technology, these challenges should in no way serve as excuses for businesses to overlook the plethora of opportunities that the IoT offers. The IoT is bound to have a disruptive effect on businesses and consumers alike, and thus needs considerable attention and associated planning. And just like the companies that were dusted away due to their indifference towards the Internet, the ones that dismiss the Internet of Things could risk being dissolved in the long run. It`s time to think!
To learn more about the opportunities of the IoT and how to manage the risks, check out part one of AIG`s Internet of Things report here.
This article is the product of a partnership between TechieStuffs and member companies of American International Group, Inc. Although this post is sponsored, the information and opinions expressed in the article constitute only my own beliefs.