As the Internet of Things (IoT) spreads its influence across the home and the enterprise, several industries are leading with investments in innovative technologies that are changing the way we live and work. According to Gartner, IoT adoption reached almost 45% of all enterprises worldwide by the end of 2016.
Other estimates reveal that the total investment by 2020 will be $6 trillion among both consumer and industrial IoT markets, with industrial IoT leading the growth.
IoT in manufacturing produced the largest investments last year, according to an IDC report, with almost $180 billion in total expenditures. Transportation resulted in nearly $80 billion invested and utilities followed at $69 billion.
IoT in Manufacturing
Manufacturing and transportation have become the foremost industries in terms of using networked automation systems. Here IoT production continues to develop, as it is the biggest part of investments in the tech space. These investments can be divided into these categories: Internal-facing (those related to system optimization and cost savings) and external facing (those that make enhancements in consumer usage). As for the internal-facing investments, manufacturers are using IoT to optimize operations as well as monitor and do predictive maintenance on their equipment.
In the outward-facing arena, companies use IoT products to monitor how their products are used by consumers by keeping a networked connection to those devices and sampling usage data and sensor measurements. Manufacturers can interpret results and create models of how the product is used, which can influence the design of the next generation of products.
IoT in Transportation
Growing numbers of freight and public transportation vehicles are equipped with sensors that help schedule maintenance, control fuel consumption, and train drivers. These vehicles can also monitor operating or driver behavior for insurance. Some vehicles are even equipped with data recorders that take video samples during rapid acceleration.
IoT in Utilities
In the utility industry, IoT investments totaled almost $60 billion last year, according to IDC. The oil and gas industry, in particular, has taken advantage of IoT solutions. IoT devices are also applied inside energy generating plants to monitor equipment over time, to do predictive maintenance, and to provide further safety oversight.
IoT in Healthcare
The healthcare industry will see active spending growth in IoT in the future, according to IDC. IoT’s value in the healthcare sector is wide ranging: From medical devices that share images with patients and monitor and troubleshooting problems with equipment, to real-time location systems that can track equipment, the delivery of medicine, and even staff and patients. Progress in implants, prosthetics, and wearables can also take advantage of IoT and stream data back to medical providers.
Pacemakers and other medical appliances can be connected to the Internet to help patients overcome errors and collect more data for specialists to correct diagnosis and improve the quality of care.
Consumer Electronics and Vehicles
Consumer IoT has become one of the fastest growing market segments. In 2016 we observed the expansion of home and office self-regulating systems as well as Amazon’s and Google’s digital assistants. The experts observed that although the smart assistants have become popular, it will be some time before we invest in entirely connected homes and offices.
Connected vehicles are also an IoT industry leader in the market. Connected cars (and buildings) are predicted to be among the top industry segments for IoT adoption during the next few years.
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