The Industrial Internet of Things: New Possibilities, New Risks

By: | July 5th, 2017

geralt / Pixabay

According to Marc Benioff, Chairman of, “The Internet of Things (IoT) is ground zero for a new phase of global transformation powered by technology innovation, generating significant economic opportunities and reshaping industries.” Clearly, the IoT is going to be a game changer.

IoT: Transformation & Disruption

We have watched for the past 15 years as the Internet revolution has been altering major industries, including financial services, media, retail, and others. The new “big wave” is the Internet of Things, just emerging from the cradle, that is going to allow us to more directly control the physical world and human-made technology more than we ever dreamed possible.

Entire industries are going to change, including factories, infrastructure, and machines, as well as business models, the human workforce, value chains, and government regulations. A paper by the WEF in 2015, “Industrial Internet of Things: Unleashing the Potential of Connected Products and Services,” explains what’s to come:

  • Unparalleled operational efficiency including better uptime, asset utilization as well as predictive maintenance and remote management
  • The beginning of the “outcome economy,” which provides software-driven services, innovation in hardware, and a better understanding of how customers, partners, products, and processes are intertwined.
  • New ecosystems of connected devices run by highly efficient software platforms that alter traditional thinking and behavior.
  • A new level of collaboration between machines and people, increasing the productivity of both to the highest levels ever.

On the “Risks & Challenges” side of the equation, WEF’s report sees the following:

  • The need for the development and sharing of best practices in security
  • Reorienting business strategy to take advantage of developments in the industrial Internet
  • Coming up with sound public policy to deal with things such as protecting data, determining liability policies, ensuring that data that crosses borders is secure, and protecting large industries that may be vulnerable including utilities, healthcare, etc.
  • Industry, government, and academia must collaborate and support long-term research and development so that fundamental problems related to the Internet of Things are solved before major problems emerge.

How the IoT Will Affect Consumers

The Consumer IoT should also be on everyone’s radar and will include connected cars, consumer wearables, smart homes, and more.

The following video, “The 7 Principles of the Industrial IoT” is from Hewlett-Packard Enterprise.

David Russell Schilling

David enjoys writing about high technology and its potential to make life better for all who inhabit planet earth.

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