When you think about it long and hard, the single greatest benefit of the IoT is the data that can be harnessed from its use. Not only are these statistics valuable to companies, but they have the potential to offer consumers some very appealing features. Take a fridge that manages your grocery list, a watch that tracks your athletic performance, or a fully-fledged system of centralized home appliances that know your habits better than you do. Convenient, user-friendly and timesaving, right? But there’s more.
At the moment, consumers find themselves having to download and use a myriad of apps and interfaces to access the data they wish to access. It may not seem like a problem now, but data management and follow-up will become increasingly relevant as more and more companies utilize data as an integral asset to the services they provide. And when it comes down to choosing between monitoring dozens of applications or just the one, the decision is pretty clear.
Recent predictions suggest that:
- 95% of high-level executives expect their companies to use IoT within three years (1)
- By 2020, the number of connected things will reach 50 billion (2)
- The percentage of mobile things in the IoT will exceed 75% in 2020 (3)
The same applies for businesses. Sure, companies are able to collect valuable information on their own; but what if instead, they’d start contributing to and benefiting from a single source of data? While this does require some serious infrastructure design and development, we could all hope to gain from an open-source network of data, where the information from all connected devices, appliances and solutions would be linked together seamlessly.
Guarding one’s data from the prying eyes of competitors may feel like the more natural option, but the potential benefits of centralized data makes alternatives worth considering. The question isn’t so much about whether to join the movement, but rather how to do so. If history is anything to go by, there will be several competing offers when it comes to the centralized management of big data à la IoT. But hey, that’s no excuse to watch the big match from the sidelines. Now who’s game?