The Internet has already brought hundreds of millions of people together and created connections that were never before possible -- but this is just the beginning. The Internet of Things (IoT) is coming, and life as we know it will be transformed.
IoT will connect practically every object to the Internet, equipping everything from furniture and doors to food and toiletries with sensors to measure and send data to the cloud. In other words, everything will be “smart.”
The implications of IoT are huge: The entire planet will become a unified, brain-like system. It sounds like a far-off, futuristic concept, but IoT is imminent, and entrepreneurs should be excited. Here’s why:
1. Everything will be measured.
IoT means that everything from household appliances, to construction equipment, to vehicles and buildings will transmit data and communicate with other objects or people. That means everything will be able to be measured and tracked all the time. Cloud-based apps and tools will be able to analyze and translate that data into useful information. All this data can fuel better decisions and help develop better outcomes.
Big data has already made waves in nearly every industry, showing the value of information and analytics. Imagine the possibilities if nearly every object used in a day transmitted data that could then be smartly analyzed in real time.
2. Metrics will be used in real time.
IoT creates massive amounts of data that can be analyzed and used to make better decisions. That’s great -- but it’s even more exciting than that. This data can be analyzed and used in real time. That means data is collected and instantly put to use to make improvements.
With IoT, information is turned into action at an unprecedented speed. Not only will technology respond to data and changes instantly, but it will be able to be used to predict problems and take actions to prevent them. Constant monitoring can detect major issues and mitigate them before they happen.
3. Actionable data will be shared.
All the data that IoT delivers won’t exist in a vacuum -- it will be shared among co-workers, stakeholders and other parties. For example, think about how wearable tech allows individuals to collect health data and share it with doctors and providers, to improve care. When this type of technology is applied in other industries, the impact will be huge.
Monitoring the effectiveness of strategies, the results of campaigns and the efficiency of systems becomes easier and more actionable when more people are in the loop. The ability to connect and share data has the possibility to bring diverse departments together -- like accounting and HR -- to make decisions everyone can agree on.
4. Industries will become interconnected.
The more communication among machines -- the more connected they are -- the more connected everyone will be to each other. Data won’t be siloed into one particular industry. It will be used across businesses and industries, fueling innovation.
For example, data from smart cars can help to improve traffic, which can help to develop and improve smart cities, which can make energy use more efficient, and so on. The possibilities will be endless when machines, industries and people can connect and inspire improvements.
For entrepreneurs, IoT means new opportunities for collaboration, valuable partnerships and outside insights to make their business better.
What excites you the most about IoT? Share your thoughts in the comments below!