IoT is NOT dead, but the game is changing. When the term "IoT" took off, some experts and analyst firms categorized it as an industry. Some of us, especially the crew at IoT Coffee Talk, would get so aggravated at the blanket term of IoT when used to describe a narrowed market or a myopic description of the technology. IoT remains a blanket term used to describe things (i.e. assets, structures, tangible objects, mobile vehicles, items, etc.) being connected to the Internet. In 2010, Ericsson first shared there would be a projected 50 billion connected devices by 2020. That later was cut to 25 billion, and in the end was not the important factor. All of that, in my opinion missed the mark. Connections are connections are connections...Are the tech firms making money and are the businesses (clients) adopting and rolling out "IoT" seeing value?
While being connected is important...assets, for example, being connected really gain value when there are actionable insights, viable analytics, and the data can be used for business value. In addition, the tech companies providing IoT services and solutions (hardware, software, services, etc.) need to make money. So many businesses have come for the hype and left in debt, as they were never able to scale or offered no business value that made them margin.
Now, let's get back to business value. Business value may include reducing costs, preventing failure or disruption, improving operations, bringing new revenue, offering asset visibility, meeting compliance requirements, and much more. The other important business aspect, is when we connect these "things," the business value becomes important only if it contributes financially to the business, presents a trackable ROI, and/or provides relevant business incentives.
Many in the industry believe the hype of IoT is over, and it really is. Why though do I say that IoT is NOT dead. The industry is now transitioning away from using the terms IoT and IoT as a marketing term is fading, especially among other hype tech areas. IoT has always been about a particular industry and automating that industry. Technologists are realizing they must dive deeper and apply the technology to the specific industry, and apply context to how the tech will:
For those "IoT" companies that are still around, you have survived but you also will need to adapt. My advice is to not jump on the next shiny thing (many have been utilizing AI long before the hype entered), but to continue to provide context of your products and services and how it applies to your customer. If your customer is in the hospitality industry, then dive deep into that industry (travel, hotel experiences, occupancy optimization) and understand the traveler needs, apply your business development delivery in an intentional manner. Immerse yourself, do your research, train your teams, hire the experts, and be intentional. Find ISVs, VARs, and other partners to help your go-to-market, especially those that specialize in specific industries as they may "own" the customer. Collaboration will be essential. Just as in the rap industry, you have to collaborate to stay relevant!
STAY TUNED, the IoT Innovator Awards by CompassIntel will open for nominations this fall!
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