The Internet of Things (IoT) means everyday objects are now creating data and connecting to the internet. The result is more data – a lot more data. Data we can use in ways we could not have imagined even 10 years ago. Watches now monitor our sleep and keep track of our activities, TVs understand what we say, golf clubs tell us how to improve our swing, and cars, planes or ships make autonomous journeys.
Today, we have about 15 billion IoT devices. By 2020, it is predicted that the number will grow to between 50 and 70 billion devices connected to the internet. This means the possibilities of how to use these devices and the data they generate are endless. And herein lies the problem: it is far too easy for companies to get overwhelmed and lost by all this.
Where do they start with the IoT? How do they best use it? These are just some of the million-dollar questions about the IoT. Unfortunately, many companies are jumping on the IoT bandwagon without giving much thought to how this is linked to their business strategy or how they could generate the biggest business value.
Instead, I propose that every company should make it a priority to take some time to determine how it might use the IoT (and the data that it generates) strategically to propel their business. In my book ‘Data Strategy: How To Profit From A World Of Big Data, Analytics And The Internet Of Things’, I have identified the following 5 essential ways companies can use the IoT, which should help anyone structure their IoT discussions.
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