The Internet-of-Things (IoT) can provide you with competitive advantages. Numerous industries have realised this and are already leveraging it in their business strategies and methodologies.
The Internet-of-Things allows companies to be hyper-connected, collect and analyse vast amounts of data and draw insights from this information to become better businesses. Today around 95% of employees use at least one personal device for work, and it’s estimated that by 2020 the Internet-of-Things will connect 50 billion devices, according to WinMagic Data Security Experts.
Imagine if you connect your entire business to your employees’ smart phones and easily gather insights from thousands of other sensors? You could, in a few short years, significantly increase your company’s productivity and profitability.
The agriculture industry is estimated to use more IoT devices, up from 30 million in 2015 to 75 million in 2020.
The number of interconnected devices has increased from 1000 in 1984, to 10 million in 2014.
62% of oil and gas executives surveyed globally will increase their investments in digital technology in the next three to five years.
Knowing exactly what is happening at all times can also help you to give your customers the enhanced, engaging experience they’re looking for. Here are six industries that are already adopting Internet-of-Things to increase their competitive advantage:
Industry 1: Agriculture
The global and local agriculture industry is coming up with numerous ways to integrate Internet-of-Things into its strategies. From drones that check the temperature and health of crops, to tags that help you monitor where all your livestock are, agribusiness owners are embracing Internet-of-Things (IoT) in a big way.
IoT device installations in the agriculture industry are estimated to grow from 30 million in 2015 to 75 million in 2020, according to a report by BI Intelligence. The reason behind this incredible adoption rate is that fact that the world will need 70% more food by 2050, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation. However, using IoT, agribusiness owners can significantly enhance their production in the same amount of space, in the same soil.
Case Study: John Deere, agriculture equipment manufacturer, uses sensors in its tractors to connect them to the internet. This allows farmers to easily access data about their crops yield. By combing the data, they retrieve from the tractor with advanced analytics, agribusinesses can calculate exactly when they should plant and how they can optimise their yields.
Industry 2: Healthcare
Can you imagine how efficient and effective the healthcare industry would be if everything was connected? Doctors could check on their patients test results in real time on a tablet, which gets simultaneously updated with their blood pressure, temperature and heart rate. This won’t only make the medical industry hyper-connected, it will also create a better experience for patients.
Not only that, but when equipment and machinery come with built-in sensors, staff know when it needs to be serviced or when it’s about to fail. “If we can use sensor data in these machines and collect data and behaviour of how it’s being used, we can accurately predict when it is going to fail,” explains Greg Petroff, GE’s Digital Chief Experience Officer.
He continues to say that the technology allows you to choose when to do repairs so you can firstly budget for them and second plan the hospitals schedule around when particular machines will be down.
For Example: By connecting an MRI machine or other medical devices up to the internet, hospital employees are alerted to when the machine needs repairs. You might think that this is just a small benefit, but in a hospital with thousands of pieces of medical equipment, it could mean the difference between life and death.
Industry 3: Retail
Bricks-and-mortar retail might not be the first industry to come to mind when it comes to digital transformation, but this industry is finding innovative and efficient ways to incorporate IoT into its repertoire.
If you consider that retailers are using customers mobile devices to ‘beacon’ their stores to increase their customer base, there is a large audience for retailers to tap into. These beacons can enable communication with customers’ mobile devices to power real-time location-based services and of, such as discounts and promotional alerts.
For Example: Once your consumer is linked up to your store’s app, you can collect information about what they prefer to buy, enabling you to send them notification about specific items and personalised discounts.
Cyber security concerns are the biggest obstacle in the industry when it comes to implementing IoT projects, reports Ernst & Young in co-operation with Bitkom Research. The more connected devices you have, the more vulnerable your business is. You’ll need to implement a state-of-the-art digital security system to ensure the safety of all your data.
Industry 4: Transportation
IoT is integrating into the transport industry across the world. From supply chain logistics to public transport, this connectivity is enhancing transport businesses in numerous ways. You can use sensors and smart software on any vehicles to collect data. This information can help to guide the driver to drive safer and reduce his fuel consumption, while predicting when your fleet vehicles will need repairs in real-time.
For Example: You can connect vehicles with sensors, which can monitor temperature. This allows transportation businesses to ensure goods, specifically perishable goods, arrive in optimal condition.
Industry 5: Energy
Energy companies are also finding ways to adopt and evolve IoT solutions to improve their productivity and efficiency. IoT is also transforming the oil and gas industry, as more than 62% of executives in these businesses globally will increase their investments in digital technology in the next three to five years, according to BI Intelligence.
Case Study: PG&E, a utility company, implemented smart meters as an effective IoT solution. This innovative concept allows the company to monitor their customers’ energy usage and communicate with the central system. Having a two-way connection with the smart meter and collecting data, offers them the opportunity to predict when demand will spike, prevent or identify outages and help them to know when to repair their machinery.
Industry 6: Manufacturing
Manufacturing is most likely the largest industry that being completely revolutionised by IoT. Global manufacturers will invest $70 billion on IoT solutions by 2020, which is up from the $29 billion they already invested in 2015, according to BI Intelligence.
Manufacturing businesses can now connect all their machinery, to a central hub so the machines can optimise their work and the staff can focus on human related tasks, while the factory floor slowly becomes automated.
For example: You can enhance your machinery by placing sensors inside them. This will then collect the data about its performance and help to manage other systems and the maintenance of the equipment. This helps to reduce down time as the machinery is always in good repair, and helps the staff gather insights into how they can make the entire system work more efficiently.
While implementing IoT into your business, ensure you protect all that valuable data, and game-changing insights with a quality cyber-crime prevention system.