As an increasing number of devices get connected to the cyberspace, we are embarking on a new journey towards creating a fast-paced industry called the Internet of Things (IoT). In 2015, over 15.4 billion devices were connected to the internet, and the Information Handling Services (IHS) predicts that this number will go up to 30.7 billion by 2020. According to General Electric, IoT will add $10 to $15 trillion to the worldwide GDP growth by 2030.Thus, it is time for companies to think about the long-term implications of IoT on their businesses.The Internet of Things refers to a connected network of devices with an on/off switch to the internet. These devices can interact with the environment and other devices that are a part of the same network.
For instance, mobile phones, security cameras, coffee makers, washing machines, and almost any other electronic device that you can think of can be a part of the IoT ecosystem.The electronics industry is fundamental to IoT and continues to gain traction each day.
Here are seven pertinent points that highlight how IoT will redefine the future of the electronics industry.
1. IoT Is a Multi-Trillion Dollar Opportunity for the Electronic Industry
Depending on the type of network, coverage, and user involvement, IoT has a wide range of applications. This is the reason why numerous firms have their own vision for incorporating IoT.Firms like Apple, Cisco, and GE are investing billions of dollars in the development of a global network that connects people, machines, and data. In 2012, nearly $752 million were invested globally in IoT for around 112 deals.
An increasing number of firms are upgrading their existing appliances by incorporating wireless chips and sensors in them. For instance, smart homes can make customers familiar with the concept of IoT. Buyers of such homes can experience the benefits of IoT when they control the electronic systems of the house with a smart phone.Thus, IoT will slowly become a part of each aspect of our lives, thereby connecting everything, from wearables to smart homes.
2. IoT Offers Precious Data That Will Be Easily Available to Marketers
IoT will enable marketers and entrepreneurs to connect with their customers in an innovative manner. The smart devices used by customers will be able to record and track a wealth of data that will help marketers study customer behavior and possibly help them predict market and consumer trends.
Data will be available at every stage of the customer buying cycle, presenting the companies with copious insights. This, in turn, will enable firms to come up with pioneering product recommendations and effective advertising campaigns that can be targeted to the right set of customers.
3. IoT Will Increase Demand for Securing Data
While IoT promises big revenue to the electronics industry, it also poses a challenge in terms of protecting the information network.According to a Federal Trade Commission staff report, the increased connectivity of numerous devices with the internet may create various security threats that can prove harmful to firms and their customers.
The IoT ecosystem can intensify grave risks of unauthorized access, misuse of personal information, and attacks on other systems that are connected. If not nipped in the bud, the entire system can be hacked, which can effectively ruin the organization.
Although IoT-enabled devices are highly sophisticated, most firms entering into this market are inexperienced in handling security issues. If a vulnerability is detected at a later stage, it can be tough to secure the system or update the software. Thus, the electronics industry will have to incorporate foolproof security measures as a crucial part of their product design.
Features like firewall and cryptographically-generated digital signatures ensure the security of the connected devices. In addition, deep packet inspection (DPI) is also an advanced method that helps in searching, identifying, classifying, filtering, and blocking packets of data with undesirable code.
4. Improved Asset Utilization with IoT
IoT will enable improved tracking of assets like machinery, equipment, tools, and electronic devices using sensors and connectivity. Firms will be able to monitor the status of and locate the movement of the physical assets owned by them.
The ability to track and trace assets will enable companies to use their resources in a productive manner. Real-time insights will also help the firm in enhancing the security of their assets.
5. Increasing E-Waste Due to IoT
According to the United Nations University, around 53 million tons of e-waste was disposed off worldwide in 2013 to make space for 67 million tons of the latest electrical gadgets in the market.Although IoT comes with a world of benefits, there is growing concern related to the fate of devices once they become outdated.
The electronics industry will have to find creative ways of using the current devices by designing/manufacturing sustainable products, and focusing on their disposal in an environment-friendly manner.
6. IoT Will Improve the Productivity of Firms
The International Data Corporation (IDC) and SAP SE Software Solutions confirm that IoT will lead to 15 percent productivity increase in delivery and supply chain performance.Since customers will have access to the latest information, they will know exactly what they are looking for.
This will possibly shorten the lengthy buying process.Companies will be able to serve more customers in less time. Thus, organizations can use their resources in areas that will help them expand their scope of business.
7. Improved Job Opportunities in the Industry
Advances in technology are normally perceived as a threat to job opportunities. However, since IoT is poised to get millions of devices online by 2020, there will be a huge demand for professionals in the field of information, electronics and communication technology.
The future will see plenty of job opportunities for developers, user interface experts, digital-mechanical/electrical engineers, data scientists, technologists, programmers, and other IT technicians.
The electronics industry has an exciting role to play in the revolution called the Internet of Things. Customers will expect firms that deal in electronics to know what they want, maintain stock, and install these electronic devices/systems. This will work successfully only if the firms’ value chain is smart and efficient. IoT offers enormous opportunities to the electronics industry through design, installation, and maintenance of IoT devices. The above points will help you appreciate the role of IoT in shaping the future of the electronics industry.