What is IoT
Internet of things or IoT is a framework of networked devices that can communicate with each other and a central repository to provide real-time monitoring, reporting, automation and machine learning capabilities for business. IoT also includes consumer in-home devices like smart heating, energy monitoring and voice assistants.
Why do you want it?
There’s an immense opportunity to carve out market share with IoT applications. For end-users, IoT offers limitless opportunities in every aspect of building and people management. From booking desk space to automating HVAC systems, monitoring occupancy, and delivering cost and energy savings, it can transform the way you operate – for the better. IoT can enhance your customer experience into a competitive advantage. Adopting IoT is the first past the post position where customer loyalty will only happen if you’re the first to make that advance in your space. If you’re the 2nd or 3rd, you’re just playing catch up. So, it’s probably a good idea to get the support of an expert partner to help you identify where the quick wins are.
What’s holding companies back from IoT adoption?
Barriers to IoT adoption for most companies include:
■ Integration concerns
According to Telefonica, “The transformation of analogue equipment into digital products that also meet current sustainable energy demands is a challenge. In addition, it must be taken into consideration that the integration of networks and devices with each other increases their interdependence.” Concerns that these systems will fail to work together or fail and bring down the whole system can lead to a sluggish interest in IoT.
Obviously, even if there are not a vast amount of legacy systems to contend with, the cost is a factor. IoT sensors, monitors and devices themselves are not free and neither is the expertise required to fit and configure them. Plus, all the interdependent teams will need training on how to operate, troubleshoot and make decisions based on the output from these IoT devices. That’s time away from their core duties that also has an associated cost. If you have an older team with less familiarity with digital devices, you may find that you lose staff if they become frustrated with the pace of change.
■ Safety and privacy
There are tech ethics concerns around the use of tracking the public with IoT devices for a profit. And there’s likely going to be regulation in the space soon. And this may have kept companies out of the IoT revolution. Then there are the safety concerns too. According to IOT Tech Expo, it should also be noted IoT systems, like many others, are vulnerable to device or communication failures, buggy apps or unforeseen bad app interactions. These vulnerabilities can result in dangerous and unsafe physical events.
If your company is worried about the cost, integration concerns or safety of IoT devices, talk to an IoT systems integrator before ruling out IoT entirely. We can help you properly scope to mitigate the risk and take advantage of this compelling technology.