The Internet of Things (IoT) has gotten more than its share of hype in the last two years, with interest in it at an all-time high. Is it real, and something you need to be concerned about, or will it fade? Forrester's predictions for 2015 illuminate a lot about where it's headed, and what it means for you.
The Forrester report, "Predictions 2015: Software Platforms Drive Internet-Of-Things Adoption," makes clear that IoT is real and here to stay. Forrester expects that IoT will enter its second phase of growth in 2015, one that will begin to allow businesses to start to take advantage of it. The report says, "Forrester believes that the IoT trend is about to enter a second stage in its development that will focus on software application platforms that provide prebuilt connectivity, security, management, and analytics capabilities. Firms ranging from Ayla Networks to GE to PTC offer such platforms to make it easier for product manufacturers and asset owner/operators to implement IoT solutions."
Internet of Things' Focus in 2015These new platforms will help businesses begin to take real advantage of IoT in 2015. But the focus will not be on transforming businesses or gaining new revenue, the report concludes. Instead, it will be on cost savings, which will come "from instrumenting assets, which enables firms to improve maintenance and utilization, driving down costs."
However, Forrester says, CIOs and developers should not be satisfied with cost savings, and should instead look to the future, in order to "support engaging with customers in new ways, creating new revenue streams, and offering new business models."
Also in 2015, expect to hear less about the billions of devices expected to be connected to the Internet at some point, and hear more about actual IoT applications and how customers are actually using it.
Finally, the year will usher in the beginning of the demand for people with new skill sets --- those with ioT-specific experience and expertise. GE has already established a software group in Silicon Valley to create IoT offerings that's not part of its traditional IT group. Expect other firms to follow suit. And also expect CIOs to begin to set up IoT groups within enterprises as well.