Demystifying the internet of things (IoT)
Forrester Vice President and Principal Analyst Frank Gillett provides a structured view of IoT — what it is, how to use it, and why you should.
The growth of IoT ideas and technology has sparked a wide variety of options (and confusion). There are many different use cases — there's not one universal application or a use case that applies to all industries in a common way. And the wide range of device sizes and complexity further complicates matters. IoT includes tiny sensor devices like Bluetooth location beacons and deeply integrated sensor systems in products like a luxury car. There are no common technologies that span many or all IoT use cases.
Complexity aside, IoT promises to transform or create new a whole set of consumer-facing and industrial products and processes. To get some perspective on how transformative it can be, consider how the precursor to IoT, radio frequency identification (RFID), fundamentally changed and improved the fortunes of firms like FedEx, UPS, and DHL. IoT incarnations of RFID will be the backbone of fully automated fulfillment: from warehouses to drone and robot delivery.
Ultimately, IoT has three characteristics; it: 1) creates a digital identity for a physical asset, bridging the physical and digital worlds; 2) provides status of its own performance or the surrounding environment; and 3) enables remote control of connected devices to trigger automated action.
IoT has explosive potential across many industries. There are seemingly endless examples and opportunities, but in each narrow application, the laws of supply and demand are still being worked out. In that light, how should executives plan for IoT both proactively (what do you do) and reactively (what do you need to react to from traditional competitors and disruptors)? In this episode, Frank Gillett provides a clear and structured view of IoT. He shares a high-level playbook for leaders in asset-light and asset-heavy industries and discusses how product managers should consider using IoT to improve the experience and efficiency of everything they bring to market.