Over 1bn Enterprise Devices on the Internet of Things

Internet of Things connected homeWhen most people think of the Internet of Things, their minds go to wearables and smart devices in the home, but there is also a rapidly growing market for enterprise IoT tech, with 1.2bn business-use devices currently connected to the internet.

According to US mobile network Verizon, this number will grow at 28 per cent year-on-year for the next five years, hitting 5.4bn by 2020, as businesses invest more and more in devices that can save money and relay useful information.

Verizon states that the growth in IoT is being driven by a mix of technological, political and social benefits for businesses, with connected devices and the data they provide enabling businesses to predict customer behaviour, improve operational efficiency, and meet regulatory requirements more easily.

The report identifies key areas of growth in different verticals on both large and small scales. In energy and utilities, 10 per cent of electricity will be micro-generated by consumers and contributed directly to smart grids by 2025, with smart metering providing granular data and smart grids enabling greater user control.

In the public sector, digital signage, connected CCTV and fleet management will improve emergency responses, while smart streetlights, car sharing and infrastructure saves money and tackles pollution.

Connected cars will reduce US CO2 emissions by 10 per cent, or 200m metric tons, by 2025, with large fleets improving efficiency with tracking and automation, while automatic braking and proximity technology improving urban road safety.

“After years of focusing on cost-cutting, many industries – from financial services to manufacturing – are looking for new ways to differentiate themselves and boost share prices,” said Verizon in the report. “Many incumbents are also looking to fend off the threat of disruptive new entrants. The ability to gather data and turn it into insight is an important factor in building and sustaining competitive advantage.”