Are You Ready to Tap the Benefit of the Internet of Things?


Predictions about the scope and growth of IoT continue to increase — Gartner now says that 6.4 billion network-connected devices will be in use in 2016, up 30 percent from 2015, and expects the number to reach 25 billion by 2020. IDC estimates that there will be 20.9 billion connected devices, while Juniper says there will be 38.5 billion.



The IT industry is known for hype and hyperbole, yet it’s difficult to overstate the magnitude of the Internet of Things (IoT). Predictions about its scope and growth continue to increase — Gartner now says that 6.4 billion network-connected devices will be in use in 2016, up 30 percent from 2015, and expects the number to reach 25 billion by 2020. IDC estimates that there will be 20.9 billion connected devices, while Juniper says there will be 38.5 billion.

Although most of these devices will have industrial applications, the IoT will touch many aspects of our lives. Objects ranging from automobiles and airplanes to video games and vending machines will have be able to connect to wired and wireless networks in order to collect and exchange data and provide an unprecedented level of automation.

The possibilities for such technology seem practically limitless, with promising use cases in healthcare, manufacturing, farming, transportation and just about any other industry you can name. 

According to Gartner, the IoT will create cost efficiencies in manufacturing through more efficient tracking of materials and components. In healthcare, wearable devices are already able to take vital signs and detect various medical conditions, alerting doctors via email or text message if something is amiss. The insurance industry is starting to offer usage-based “pay as you drive” policies that use sensors in cars to link insurance premiums to the number of miles driven and the policyholder’s risk profile.

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