Untangling the business opportunities in the Internet of Things

Mike Dano

It's no secret that the Internet of Things has generated a significant amount of buzz in the wireless industry. Indeed, the Internet of Things is now at the peak of its own hype cycle, according to research firm Gartner. (For comparison, the M2M market has already peaked and is on its way toward a "plateau of productivity" while virtual personal assistants are on the firm's pre-peak "innovation trigger" slope.)

But its top position on Gartner's hype cycle graph does nothing to limit the potential importance of the Internet of Things. As anyone in the IoT industry will tell you, it has the potential to completely change how users' business and personal lives operate.

Indeed, we're already beginning to see hints at the Internet of Things future. In its demonstration of its forthcoming iOS 8, Apple promised that its HomeKit software will allow users to say "get ready for bed" to automatically lock their garage door, dim their lights and lock their doors. And AT&T (NYSE: T) is getting ready to open its Digital Life home automation service to third-party developers, potentially setting the stage for a burst of innovation in the home automation space. These are both concrete examples of the progress in the wider Internet of Things industry, and may eventually be looked back on as milestones in the industry's maturation.

But, of course, obstacles remain. As Gartner points out in its critique of the IoT industry, standards for the technology remain cloudy at best, and the goalposts for those in the industry continue to move.

Thus, one of the key unanswered questions in the Internet of Things industry is: Which market segment should industry players target first? The home automation area continues to move forward, and some companies in the industrial sector have made some progress, but where should IoT companies target their energies next?

Where are the next top growth segments in the Internet of Things?

That's exactly the question that I'll be debating during the FierceWireless "Internet of Things: Uncovering the Top Growth Segments" executive breakfast on Sept. 10 in Las Vegas from 7 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. Held in conjunction with CTIA's Super Mobility Week at the Sands Expo & Convention Center, I'll be joined by industry heavyweights including:

  • Glenn Lurie, President—Emerging Enterprises and Partnerships, AT&T
  • Matt Thompson, GM, Developer Evangelism, Microsoft
  • Alec Saunders, VP, Cloud Business, BlackBerry, and member of the Industrial Internet Consortium
  • Larry Zibrik, VP of Market Development, Sierra Wireless
  • John Horn, President, RacoWireless

After a hearty breakfast, we'll discuss the future of the IoT industry and the segments where IoT technology could have the greatest impact. This will be a roundtable-type event where members of the audience will be able to engage directly with our speakers, so make sure to click here to register now to reserve your place at our event. I look forward to seeing you there. --Mike |+MikeDano | @mikeddano

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