The Internet of Things (IoT) is a key driver of the digital transformation that will enable businesses to reinvent products, services, internal operations and business models. As a result, the majority of executives surveyed by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) for this report believe that following an IoT technology path is crucial to their long-term success.
Many respondents say that the IoT has already had a marked impact on their business model, allowing them to generate greater revenue and sparking a new innovation wave within their organisation. One- fth have already seen a major impact on their industry, and a further 30% believe they will see signi cant impacts in the near future.
Other key findings from the report are:
- Many companies are seeing payback from their early IoT efforts. One in four (25%) survey respondents report that their organisation’s use of the IoT has “sparked a new wave of innovation thanks to data that give us better insights”. Almost as many (22%) say it has “unlocked new revenue opportunities from existing products and services”, while 15% say it has lowered costs. For one in ve respondents (20%) the IoT has changed existing business models or strategies, and 16% say it has enabled them to push into new markets and industries.
- Executives believe in the IoT’s potential, but progress has not happened as fast as expected. When asked about the impact of the IoT on business in general, one in ve respondents (21%) believe that it has already had a major impact, and a further 32% believe that while it has had a limited impact on business so far, it will have a major impact in the future. However, almost six out of ten (56%) agree “somewhat” or “strongly” that their progress with the IoT has not happened as fast as they had expected.
The main obstacles to IoT implementation are practical. In 2013 the main challenges to IoT adoption cited by executives related to understanding and perception. Today, they are more concerned with practical matters, with 29% of respondents suggesting that the high cost of required investment in IoT infrastructure is seen as a challenge. Concerns about security and privacy appear in second place, cited by 26% of executives.