We are seeing the emergence of a smart, connected world. We’re at the start of an impressive wave of new innovation.
Here’s another way to think about it. There are approximately 7 billion people on Earth. About one third of these are connected to the Internet – with smartphones, laptops etc. And, since in 2010, there are more things connected to the Internet than people on Earth.
Simple logic suggests that there these connected objects can’t just be smartphones, tablets and computers. Increasingly, we’re seeing the rise of objects like thermostats, fitness devices and kitchen appliances that are connected to the Internet. And this trend of connected things is only going to grow and accelerate. As a result, by 2020 it is estimated that there will be about 8 billion people on Earth and 50 billion connected things.
In the space of 10 years, we are going from a relatively equal number of connected things and population, to a rapidly accelerated growth of connected things.
Why should you be interested by this trend? In short, it offers the potential for manufacturers to offer and generate real value. In 2013 McKinsey published a report on the most disruptive technologies. Near the top of this list was Internet of Things and by 2025 the Internet of Things phenomenon will generate $6.2 trillion of global economic value add. Also in this report, Internet of Things is predicted to generate ten times the economic value of 3D printing.
Interestingly though, much of the world doesn’t yet appreciate the potential of Internet of Things. In truth, it isn’t really about the Internet. It’s about the Things and the way that these Things are changing as a direct result of connectivity– it’s where the real innovation is happening. And manufacturers are the ones who will make this a reality, as you’re the ones who will design, manufacture and market these Things both now and in the future.
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