The changing face of IoT

  • IoT is a hot topic in boardrooms across Asia Pacific.

  • Implementation of large-scale industrial IoT solutions is increasing.

  • Cloud computing makes it easier and more affordable to manage IoT systems.

When it comes to Internet of Things (IoT), if 2014 was about problem identification and preparation, 2015 will be about solution development and deployment.

I recently moved from the US to Hong Kong, and have found that the business case for an IoT deployment in Asia Pacific is stronger than ever. In fact, it’s a topic on the agenda in boardrooms across Asia Pacific, with discussion in the coming year expected to move from traditional technical possibilities to more strategic/product development-driven conversation.

Emerging Trends

Executives are looking at IoT’s ability to connect people, processes, assets and intelligent information to streamline business decisions and increase the operational bottom-line. A key take-away in conversations with Asian decision makers is using the technology to create ‘pull through’ revenue (revenue generated by selling an entire IoT solution set) – with potential to be a differentiation factor. This is a win-win strategy wherein IoT helps create new emerging business offers, thus up-selling an entire solution set, which would help companies justify their investment in time and resources as part of the overall business case.

Along with solutions like smart home and consumer wearable devices, there has been increasing implementation of large scale industrial IoT solutions. In the shipping industry, companies have been using IoT systems to track trucks, containers, and temperature-sensitive cargo in transit to improve reliability and maintain the integrity of high-value goods. Industries that rely on heavy machinery, such as mining, construction and agriculture, are remotely monitoring equipment to improve maintenance, security, and efficiency. Manufacturers are converging production systems, supply chains, and enterprise IT to enhance performance and agility across complex global operations. And the automotive sector has embraced IoT technologies in the race to create new revenue models via the connected car of the future. For example, as a leader in automotive IoT, AT&T expects meaningful subscriber growth for its connected car services in the next three-to-five years, connecting nearly half of new wireless-connected U.S. passenger vehicles this year and serving more than 10 million such vehicles by the end of 2017.

With countries focused on enhancing competitiveness, demands on global manufacturing have increased, especially heavy industry and energy sectors. This makes it no surprise that manufacturing hubs like China, Japan, Korea, and Australia show high demand for industrial IoT.

Defining New Business Outcomes

Here are a few key findings to keep in mind with IoT technology and how it may be used in the future.

  • Today’s IoT devices are smaller and cheaper, more energy efficient, sensitive, and accurate.
  • Public communications networks have expanded to handle the surge in IoT data.
  • Developments in geo-distributed cloud computing make it easier and more cost effective for organizations to implement and manage complex IoT systems.
  • New industrial IoT solutions and more powerful analytics software continue to be launched.
  • Organizations are recognizing the gains by bringing industrial equipment, vehicle fleets, supply chain transport and end products into IoT.

Extensive security, high levels of scalability and deployment tools with flexible API’s are integral to an IoT Strategy.

Sandy Verma Senior Director of Asia Pacific for Internet of Things Solutions AT&T About Sandy