May 9, 2017
The internet of things continues the generation-long build-out of the global information network. This activity spans two overlapping areas: the creation of smart, connected products, and the collection of data to improve business performance. Different sectors and businesses focus more on one area or the other. In the former category are familiar consumer devices, from smart watches and thermostats to home assistants and even connected cars. The latter includes the industrial internet of things, in which manufacturers and other industrials collect and analyze data from equipment and other sources to improve their processes, predict and prevent problems, and ultimately create superior ecosystems for new products and services.
Who is investing the most? Big spenders on IoT today include North American companies, including those in aerospace and defense, wholesale and distribution, and technology. In three years, they will be joined by companies in entertainment and media, information and communications, healthcare payers and providers, hospitality and leisure, and professional services.
What are IoT investors focusing on? Product, service, and business-model innovation and content as well as engagement platforms are the top IoT initiatives today. In three years, corporate focus will broaden to include digital culture development, customer experience, operations platforms, and back-office transformation.
What value do IoT investors expect? Revenue growth, better customer experiences, and increased profits are the top short-term goals of survey respondents. Cost savings, product innovation, talent retention and recruitment, brand and reputation, disruption of their own or other industries, and competition with new industry entrants make the list in three years.