Earlier this week, Business Insider Intelligence reported that there will be 34 billion Internet of Things devices installed on Earth by 2020; the equivalent of more than 4 IoT devices for every human, with global population expected to reach 8 billion people by this time.
Access to the Internet has come a long way since PC’s. We can access it through our smartphones, tablets and even watches. It has revolutionised our homes, and now it is revolutionising our businesses and cities. Business Insider (BI) Intelligence predicts that business and enterprise will be the top investors of IoT solutions with an estimated $8,481,290,994 set to be invested by 2020.
Other key findings from the research include the following:
- By 2018, half of the world will be connected to the Internet
- Nearly $6 trillion will be spent in total on IoT solutions over the next five years
- By 2020, 6 billion IoT devices will be used by cities
- The majority of IoT devices will be used by businesses and Governments
The Internet of Things in Practice
BI Intelligence reports that the industries seeing the largest returns from IoT investment include manufacturing, banking and financial services, energy, retail, transportation, hospitality, healthcare and utilities.
For example, manufacturers are deploying internet-connected robots in order to increase production and drive efficiencies. Connected medical equipment and patient applications are allowing doctors and medical staff to keep track of and remotely monitor their patients. Utility companies can monitor their network and customer usage remotely, whilst also deploying an in-vehicle connectivity solution to enable their field workforces to access and transmit data on-the-road, in real-time.
All of these Internet of Things solutions are driving productivity and efficiencies in the workplace, and enabling organisations to be smarter about the way they operate.
IoT and Smart Cities
As the global urban population rises, enterprise and Government interest in Smart Cities continues to grow. By 2020, it is estimated that 6 billion IoT devices will be in use by cities. The implementation of the Internet of Things in cities will improve and drive efficiencies in multiple ways; Intelligent Street Lighting, Smart Buildings and Smart Traffic Management will reduce resource consumption and public sector costs, as well as improving citizen experience.
Networking for the Future
As IoT adoption rates increase, and more and more data is consumed in both fixed locations and on-the-go, traditional networking infrastructures cannot deliver to its demands; this is where cellular and hybrid networking comes to the forefront.
4G LTE and hybrid networking is favourable for connecting the Internet of Things as it enables organisations to leverage the benefits of all forms of connectivity, to best suit all individual requirements, while still operating as a unified solution.
For example, providing connect anywhere, anytime capabilities, 4G LTE provides the optimal solution for mobile or edge IoT networking, while central and fixed locations may still best be served by fixed line solutions utilised to create a Wireless LAN to connect in-building IoT sensors and so on. Hybrid networking unifies the multiple forms of connectivity at work, to provide a seamless solution across the enterprise. With software defined networking, organisations can even ensure that all these connected things can be monitored and managed easily by the IT department – whether connected by 4G LTE, fixed line or WLAN.
The Internet of Things is clearly set to grow phenomenally, providing new and improved capabilities for both enterprise and Government organisations – but it will be the implementation of connectivity, and the management of such, that will define networking success