Much of the discussion about IoT is focussed on personal devices and home automation – that makes sense as it is something we can all relate to. However, many of these solutions just build complexity into your life and home without offering any counterbalancing benefit that outweighs the hassle.
a 2016 report from Accenture tells a different story. Many consumers are hesitant to buy more devices, with price and security being just two of the barriers to purchase.
It is in the industrial applications where the real impact of IoT will be felt – it will be hidden, and it is already occurring. The City of Melbourne has installed Smart Bins that know when they need to be empty, thus reducing rubbish on the street and optimising the schedule for waste trucks (and therefore also reducing traffic). This sort of application becomes invisible, after the initial press reports, and the citizen comes to expect the benefit that is delivered. This is how it should be and shows real value being delivered.
“The McKinsey Global Institute forecasts the economic impact of IoT reaching as high as $11 trillion by 2025, and a massive chunk of that is predicted to live in business and industrial applications. According to McKinsey, the real promise is in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).”
Developing IoT solutions that solve difficult problems and then making sure that these solutions work reliably and simply i.e. being invisible is the key to success for the IoT market
The McKinsey Global Institute determined that, “on average, 40 per cent of the total value [of IoT] that can be unlocked requires different IoT systems to work together.” It cited interoperability as the difference between IoT being a $7 trillion market or an $11.1 trillion market by 2025.
Integration is always an issue for any corporate systems. The integration domain is well known within the industry and is easily solved. The key to making integration work at various levels of the IoT architecture is standards and openness. The important thing is to understand the value of the integration and ensure that business case actually leads to unlocking the value in the data.
Hypercat in an interesting standards group recently, which recently launched its efforts as a counterpart to the UK-based alliance pushing the Hypercat standard, particularly for Smart Cities. This comes against the backdrop of competing standards vying for dominance in the relatively new field of IoT. I do not believe there will be one standard for the whole of IoT – that would be like stating that the whole of computing is based off one standard – however the more standardisation is achieved, the faster the industry will develop robust and scalable solutions.