Who Understands the IoT?
IMT Staff posted on December 12, 2014 |

Internet of things, product, communications, product development According to Cisco, there will be 13.5 billion connected devices in manufacturing by 2022. And JP Morgan’s Global Equity Research team has already pegged manufacturing with having the greatest Internet of Things (IoT) market potential. Although it’s difficult to accurately gauge the impact these technologies will have, it’s clear that experts are projecting it to be massive.

But what do manufacturing leaders have to say about the IoT?

Several months ago, LNS Research launched some new IoT survey questions that dig a little deeper into this topic. The study asks manufacturing executives and other senior leaders how the IoT is impacting their business today, as well as about their expected IoT investments going forward. What’s interesting is that almost half—43%—of these industry professionals indicated they still “don’t understand” or “know about” the IoT.

Given the hype around the IoT, these numbers may seem a bit odd to some. But the emerging technologies have the potential to be broadly disruptive, making the potential applications appear daunting for many businesses, therefore this trend is likely to continue until after more proven and commonplace solutions surface in the coming years—and they will.

In this post, we’ll drill down into this new IoT research data and share insights into what you should do if you fall into the “don’t understand” category.

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Attitudes toward IoT in Manufacturing

Although the number of respondents stating they “don’t understand” the IoT is substantial, almost 300 different individuals (and counting) have responded to these survey questions and this particular question offered seven options.

A combined 42% acknowledged having an interest in or understanding of the IoT. One in five reported being interested in but still investigating the impact. And 11% are rapidly pursuing IoT opportunities either internally, with customers, or in both regards. There seems to be somewhat of a split between executives who are learning about and experimenting with the IoT compared to those who don’t understand the technology.

Why Should You “Know About” the IoT

The IoT is expected to transform the way businesses operate. We’re already seeing use cases surface in manufacturing as well as in the consumer world, particularly with the servitization of products—in other words, enabling new service models whereby customer buy or rent a delivered result from a product instead of the product itself. And in the near future we’re expecting to see more use of intelligent sensors and devices in the shop floor environment, providing enormous amounts of new data streams that can be utilized up and down the value chain. Massively parallel and in memory big data analytics technologies, which are considered part of the IoT, are expected to provide insights into real-time performance, from which correlations can be drawn that were previously too resource-intensive to calculate.

The utility of the IoT may be as vast as your imagination, but here are a few potential connected device use cases for perspective:

  • Quality Intelligence: Adding new quality variables and more precise data into real-time production monitoring and statistical process control to anticipate process variations
  • Asset Management: Adding new variables for monitoring machine performance, predicting failures, and alerting workers
  • Health and Safety: Equipping staff with connected wearables that monitor key health and safety indicators like body temperature or exposure to hazardous elements 
  • Service: Gaining visibility into real-time product performance and diagnostics without having to rely on traditional on-site field service techniques
  • Sustainability: Closely monitoring the usage of utilities such as water, air, gas, or steam with wireless intelligent gauges that offer remote information access

The idea behind nearly all IoT applications is to gather new, more finite types of information and data and then transform it into usable, contextualized intelligence, awareness, and collaboration.

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This article was originally published on ThomasNet News Industry Market Trends  and is reprinted with permission from Thomas Industrial Network.  For more stories like this please visit Industry Market Trends


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