How IoT Data Analytics Will Give Businesses a Competitive Edge

According to McKinsey & Company, the potential economic impact of the IoT could reach $11 trillion per year in 2025, which is equivalent to around 11 percent of the world economy. Making that a reality will depend on the widespread use of Internet of Things (IoT) data analytics.

Security analysts must ensure that devices are not just managed and monitored, but that the data that they produce is effectively collected, managed and stored so that it might produce insights to fuel better decision-making. Gartner ranked IoT data analytics as one of the main IoT-related technologies for organizations to invest in during 2017 and 2018, second only to security.

Widespread Benefits of IoT Data

Many areas and industries will be impacted by the growth of the IoT, which will bring greater richness to lives in the form of smart buildings and cities, and likely make health care more efficient and effective.

According to McKinsey’s estimates, factories will be the main beneficiaries of this value. A recent report from TechTarget also explored some of the ways that IoT data analytics will benefit manufacturing production. The huge swathes of data generated by IoT devices will produce critical insights into manufacturing processes, product development and customer purchasing patterns.

IoT data analytics will also enable manufacturers to optimize production cycles and schedule the most suitable time for maintenance to reduce the impact on operations. Data analysis using automated algorithms will allow factory operators to detect issues that could pose a threat to production schedules. The resulting alerts regarding issues such as defective parts would raise the flag before a serious problem occurs.

A New IoT Data Analytics Service

To benefit from the promise of the IoT, organizations will need to invest in capabilities to collect the enormous volumes of data and tools to effectively analyze it and glean meaningful insights. IBM recently unveiled a new service in collaboration with AT&T to help organizations transform data from industrial IoT devices into actionable information to optimize their businesses. Data can be ingested from multiple sources, combining information from machines with pertinent information such as sales and inventory data. It also draws information from publicly available sources, such as weather and road conditions, that can be vital in planning distribution routes for raw materials or finished goods.

The service combines AT&T’s IoT network with the IBM Watson Data Platform. This combination of capabilities will help to create the models necessary for predictive analytics, which can determine when problems are likely to happen so that action can be taken in a timely manner. As a result, organizations in the manufacturing sector will see better optimized production and improved product quality.

The potential of IoT data analytics extends beyond the manufacturing sector and will affect us all in many walks of life. The IoT is already a reality in many areas, but the ability to analyze and gain actionable insights from the devices that it contains will fuel long-term growth.

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Fran Howarth

Senior Analyst, Bloor Research

Fran Howarth is an industry analyst and writer specialising in security. She has worked within the security technology sector for more than 25 years in an advisory capacity as an analyst, consultant and writer. Fran focuses on the business needs for security technologies, with a focus on emerging technology sectors. Current areas of focus include cloud security, data security, identity and access management, network and endpoint security, security intelligence and analytics, and security governance and regulations.