IoT Market Opportunities: Top 4 Ways to Stand Out From the Crowd
As technology develops, the number of connected devices is increasing rapidly. In fact, it is estimated that currently 127 new devices are connected to the internet every second. In 2020 there were over 26 billion active IoT devices worldwide, and this is expected to exceed 75 billion by 2025. And the global IoT market is projected to reach $1,463.19 billion by 2027. But with so many companies now turning their attention to this booming sector, competition is fierce. What can brands do to stand out from the crowd and maximize the IoT market opportunities created by this surge in demand?
1. People Centricity
People should always be at the heart of what you do. They are your consumers after all. And IoT devices are about making people’s lives easier and better. The more a brand can show its products are people-focused, the more successful it will be.
IoT applications and devices should be designed with the consumer in mind to give them a Total Experience that combines multi experience (MX), customer experience (CX), employee experience (EX), and user experience (UX).
As an example, a large telecoms company transformed its experience to improve safety and satisfaction during the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers booked appointments via an app and once they were within 75 feet of the store they received a notification to guide them through checking in, and an alert telling them how long it would be before they could enter the store safely. Once inside the store employees maintained their own safety by using technology that allowed them to co-browse customer hardware without physically touching the device.
Gartner recently highlighted the Internet of Behaviors (IoB) as a key aspect of people-centric design. This involves capturing data relating to people’s lives from a variety of sources and then using that information to influence behavior. Whilst there are concerns over how personal data is used, there can be no doubt this can add great value for both consumers and sellers. For instance, tracking driving behavior and rewarding it with lower insurance premiums.
If such data is seen to be used for nefarious purposes, however, then those brands involved will quickly lose public trust. Using personal data to enhance products is one thing, ensuring the safety and security of that data is another.
Therefore, privacy-enhancing computation is a must for any devices handling customer data. First and foremost, this means providing a trusted, decentralized environment to process or analyze the data. The data should also be encrypted before processing to allow organizations to safely share data without compromising the privacy of individuals.
2. Location Independence
The events of the last year have made it more important than ever for devices to be able to be used flexibly anywhere. However much value a new product may add, that value will rapidly diminish if it can be only used in one location, or requires a significant amount of reconfiguration when moved.
IoT edge cloud allows you to decentralize your massive cloud data centers, moving storage closer to the devices to reduce latency, but without requiring the device itself to use its own power for data crunching.
But with such flexibility must come safeguards. Cybersecurity mesh is a distributed architectural approach to scalable, flexible, and reliable cybersecurity control. It allows any person or thing to securely access and use any digital asset, regardless of the location of either.
3. Equipment as a Service (EaaS)
Research by IoT Analytics shows that there is an increasing preference for leasing or purchasing equipment as a service instead of large one-off outlays. They predict the global EaaS market to grow from $22 billion in 2019 to $131 billion in 2025.
IoT solutions which measure equipment usage are key to this as they dramatically reduce the costs of these measurements and make it economically viable to connect previously disconnected hardware and offer it as part of an EaaS model.
As an example of how beneficial this can be for companies, Rolls Royce introduced its jet engine equipment as a service offering “TotalCare” in 1997. Since then it has seen its large engine market share increase from 14% to 35%, with 90% of its new engines signed up to the TotalCare program.
4. IoT Security
Whichever area of the market you are focusing on, security is always a critical component of your offering. With more and more interconnections between products, individuals and companies are at a greater risk than ever before. Security for computers is well established, so hackers are turning their attention to this burgeoning sector where they can discover and exploit new vulnerabilities.
With cyber attacks on IoT devices on the increase, it has become more important than ever to show that products can withstand the most sophisticated hacking attempts. But don’t just implement device security and sit back in the knowledge that users are safe – shout about it so everyone knows how serious you are about consumer security. Label your products with security badges and highlight them in your advertising and marketing materials so that nobody is left in any doubt.
However you decide to position your brand and products to stand out from your competitors, one thing is certain – consumers are becoming more concerned about how their data is used and how this impacts on their safety and privacy. A McKinsey report found that, whilst consumers understood the need to share data to benefit from certain products and services, 87% would not do business with a company if they had concerns about its security practices. And 71% would stop doing business with a company if it gave away sensitive data without permission.
If you can show that you meet the highest standards for data security and privacy then there is no doubt your brand will stand out in this fast-growing market.