Business spending on IoT projects is expected to increase this year.
Research firm IDC, in its “Worldwide Internet of Things Spending Guide,” predicted a double-digit growth rate in 2021, with a compound annual growth rate of 11.3% from 2020 to 2024. IDC cited the healthcare, insurance and education as IoT leaders. expenses.
Statista researchers predicted similar growth, saying the global IoT market for end-user offerings is expected to grow from $212 billion in 2019 to $1.6 trillion by 2025.
Statista also predicted that there will be 75 billion IoT devices in use by 2023, generating 79.4 zettabytes of data.
These IoT connections extend across the globe and across industries, as well as homes, offices, and individual vehicles, with the most important applications of IoT technologies falling into the following categories.
1. Connected vehicles
Autonomous vehicles are one of the most notable examples of IoT in action. Self-driving cars and trucks use a host of connected devices to safely navigate the roads in all kinds of traffic and weather conditions. Technologies used include artificial intelligence (AI) enabled cameras, motion sensors and on-board computers.
IoT connections also exist on conventional vehicles, with manufacturers installing connected devices to monitor performance and manage computerized systems.
Commercial fleets such as city buses and corporate delivery trucks are often equipped with additional IoT technologies, such as connected systems to monitor safety issues. Personal cars and trucks can be equipped with similar technology, often from insurance companies, that collects and transmits telemetry data to verify good driving habits.
2. Traffic management
Road infrastructure has also become more connected over the past decade, with cameras, sensors, traffic light controls, parking meters and even smartphone traffic apps transmitting data which is then used to help avoid traffic jams, prevent accidents and ensure smooth travel.
For example, cameras detect and transmit traffic volume data to central management groups who can then analyze the information to determine if, what and when mitigation action should be taken.
Sensors on traffic lights can detect different levels of light in the sky and adjust the brightness of signals, helping to ensure they are always visible to drivers.
Connected devices can be used to detect open parking spaces and transmit this information to terminals or apps to alert drivers.
Monitors on bridges collect and transmit data for analysis on their structural health, alerting authorities of maintenance needs before there is a breakdown or problem.
3. Smart Grids
Utilities are also using IoT to bring efficiency and resilience to their energy networks.
Historically, energy circulated in one direction along the network: from the production site to the customer. However, connected devices now enable two-way communication throughout the energy supply chain: from generation to distribution to usage, improving utilities’ ability to move and manage it.
Utilities can take and analyze real-time data from connected devices to detect outages and redirect distribution, as well as respond to changes in energy demand and load.
Meanwhile, smart meters installed in single homes and businesses provide real-time usage information and historical usage patterns that customers and utilities can analyze to identify ways to improve the efficiency.
4. Environmental Monitoring
Connected devices can collect IoT data that indicates the health and quality of air, water, and soil, as well as fisheries, forests, and other natural habitats. They may also collect weather data and other environmental data.
As such, the IoT not only provides the ability to access much more real-time environmental data anytime, anywhere, but it also enables a range of organizations across various industries to use this data to glean actionable insights.
This information can help government agencies better monitor and even predict natural disasters, such as tornadoes, as well as better manage and protect land and wildlife populations. Businesses can use this data to better limit their carbon footprint, more effectively document compliance with environmental regulations, and/or more effectively plan for weather conditions that affect their business.
5. Smart buildings and smart homes
Homeowners are using the power of the IoT to make all kinds of buildings smarter, which means they’re more energy efficient, comfortable and convenient, as well as healthier and possibly safer.
An IoT ecosystem in a commercial building could include HVAC infrastructure monitoring that uses real-time data and automation technologies to continuously measure and adjust temperature for optimal energy efficiency and comfort. Meanwhile, cameras using AI could help with crowd management to ensure public safety at events like sold-out concerts.
At home, consumers can install smart technologies, such as door locks, appliances, thermostats and smoke detectors, which help them with their daily needs, for example by coordinating temperature checks with the schedules of owners.
6. Smart cities
Smart cities are consolidating IoT deployments across many facets to give them a holistic view of what’s happening in their jurisdictions.
Thus, smart cities generally integrate connected traffic management systems and their own smart buildings. They could also incorporate private smart buildings. Smart cities could also tie into smart grids and use environmental monitoring to create an even larger IoT ecosystem that provides real-time views of the various elements that affect life in their municipalities.
Similar to smaller, more confined IoT deployments, the goal of smart cities is to collect real-time data for analysis that provides insights city officials can then use for better decision-making and/or automated controls. to produce better, more efficient and more resilient data. and safer communities. Example: Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, is using IoT technologies to achieve its goal of being a carbon neutral city by 2025.
7. Supply chain management
Supply chain management has undergone a modernization, with low-power sensors, GPS and other tracking technologies that identify assets as they move along of a supply chain. This information allows managers to plan more effectively and reassure stakeholders with more confidence about the location of items being shipped or received.
This visibility is beneficial, but it is only the beginning of the value proposition that the IoT brings to this discipline. IoT technologies can also monitor and manage delivery requirements, for example, measuring and maintaining a specified temperature throughout transport to ensure quality and safety checks. Additionally, back-end analytics capabilities can use IoT-generated data to determine supply chain improvements, such as more efficient shipping routes or times.
8. Industrial, agricultural and commercial management
The IoT has many applications in industrial and commercial environments, enabling everything from predictive maintenance to improving facility safety to smart agriculture. These wide-ranging use cases utilize an equally extensive list of IoT technologies.
A manufacturer can use machine-to-machine connected devices as part of an industrial IoT deployment to more accurately map workloads. A plant could track equipment wear to schedule preventive maintenance at an optimal time. Businesses can use employee badges or wearable devices with RFID chips to manage and control physical access to their facilities. And farmers can opt for tracking technologies integrated with environmental monitors and their field equipment to both automate and maximize their seed allocations.
Benefits for the company
While there are some industry-specific IoT use cases, many of the most common deployments involving connected technologies transcend any particular vertical and can be found across a wide range of organizations.
The benefits that come with these deployments are also cross-industry. Typical ROI includes the following:
- reduced operating costs;
- increased productivity;
- optimized output;
- increased security;
- improved security;
- better quality control; and
- increased understanding and visibility of real-world activities.