Global organizations and IT professionals are embracing the vision of a connected world that bridges the physical and digital worlds. IoT solutions support this by helping ingest information and context through sensors from the physical world and taking actions in the physical world via actuators based on digital insights. According to a survey from research firm Forrester, 60% of decision-makers at global enterprises are using or planning to use IoT-enabled applications over the next two years, compared with 52% across global firms of all sizes.
As the IoT market grows, the awareness of priorities emerge in the limelight. For example, US Senators have recently introduced a bill proposing that IoT vendors providing equipment to the government follow industry security standards. We anticipate that with the arrival of self-driving cars, connected home, and fitness trackers, policies surrounding IoT will only increase.
The security play however, is not the only game in town. According to the Forrester Wave’s Q4 2016 report on IoT, numerous other priorities are also top of mind for executives across all industries. As you review this blog, we hope these priorities will assist you in your strategic decision-making.
- Creating Connected Processes: Businesses across many vertical markets are using IoT-enabled use cases to transform supply chain processes, enhance inventory management and operational processes, and track and monitor asset performance. For example, IoT devices can be used to track freeway traffic through busy metropolitan areas or the failure rate of elevators in malls. Initiatives such as these require that technology professionals understand the technologies, infrastructure, software platforms, applications, and architectural frameworks necessary to successfully deploy IoT-enabled operational processes.
- Security: As stated above, legislation of significance is being debated in the chambers of the US federal government. IoT devices generate sensitive information about company operations and customers and transmit that data using specialized protocols to local gateways and then over the internet. In addition, the connected devices themselves are vulnerable to hacks that can leak information, damage equipment, or even cause personal injury. As the market expands, organizations must be cognizant to place security top of mind or risk loss of revenue and lawsuits.
- Management: IoT scenarios often involve thousands or tens of thousands of connected devices to measure state information like pressure, temperature, or vibration. Thus, not only must IoT organizations develop the devices themselves, but also the underlying software supporting device usage. Software can provide a broad range of capabilities including monitoring, testing, updating software, and troubleshooting connected devices as well as monitoring and reporting logs.
- Data Analysis: Many sensors capture and generate time-series data in a per-minute or real-time manner, while audio and video sensors deliver rich media insight. In order to truly get the most out of IoT, solutions must be developed that provide context towards actions made. Some platforms on the market do currently provide predictive analytics, however Forrester does see additional potential here for growth and development.
- Integration: The diverse array of IoT use cases requires software integration and APIs to support mainstream business processes and applications. IoT platforms enable developers to easily create code, business rules, and data management capabilities integrated with specific IoT connectivity, security, and manageability capabilities. As shown in previous blogs, connectivity is scalable, value-adding, and extends the use of business applications.
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In today’s innovative enterprise, IT exists in an ecosystem. In contrast to the past where many implemented solutions existed in individual silos, today’s implementations work together to influence positive business outcomes. This post is part of a series focused on guiding enterprises through an overwhelming process to compete, scale, and innovate in a fast-moving world. Follow more of the series here.