Decades ago, when internet was used for the first time to transmit data, the world we see today with flying drones and an almost ubiquitous presence of connected devices would have seemed like science fiction. Simply put, we are living in the age of Internet of Things.
Vodafone’s fifth Annual IoT Barometer Report 2017-18, a global study of 1278 decision makers from 13 countries revealed that 84 percent of the respondents have increased their adoption of IoT, with close to 50 percent leveraging IoT to offer entirely new business services, moving beyond traditional business models and building new generating models. In fact, 58 percent of the Indian respondents will be using IoT to increase revenue over the next year or two. At the same time, IoT is helping enterprises drive higher efficiencies in business processes and resource utilization, gain deeper insights for more impactful decision-making, and improve customer service operations.
A recent study by NASSCOM revealed that the IoT market in India is expected to reach USD 15 billion by 2020, accounting for nearly 5 percent of the total global market. Every industry is witnessing a plethora of possibilities with IoT despite differences in the way each sector functions. A key sector with significant implications for the economy is Agriculture, where “smart precision farming” which has applications in soil observation and analysis, farm vehicle tracking, livestock monitoring and storage monitoring will help enhance productivity and minimize wastage.
The manufacturing industry, for instance, is under tremendous pressure to increase productivity, make business processes more efficient and reduce costs across all areas of the enterprise. IoT is enabling the transformation of manufacturing processes by providing cost-efficient solutions such as asset tracking for both movable and fixed assets, which automates visibility of large industry machines and allows for real-time monitoring of these. Another key application is Energy Management where resource utilization across distributed assets can be monitored to enable efficiency.
Healthcare is another sector where consumer can reap the benefits of connected technology. Remote monitoring enables doctors to consult and review patient data on an ongoing basis, and even send timely alerts for reducing emergency admissions and promoting preventive healthcare. Today, managed connectivity devices are linked to a central monitoring platform where critical patient information can be securely stored and accessed for immediate treatment.
All the initiatives under the government’s Digital India programme - Smart Cities, Make in India, Start-up India, GST, Demonetization, Aadhaar, etc. - leverage IoT as the core to transformation. Driven by the increasing adoption of digital, rapid smartphone penetration, improved data and broadband connectivity and rising awareness of evolving technologies, the application of IoT is exploding in every aspect of our lives.
And last, but not the least, with connected cars becoming a reality, the automotive industry has also evolved by leaps and bounds. Bringing cars and telecom services together offers a range of benefits to both the driver and the community. Seamless network connectivity provides automatic alerts for service and maintenance, anti-theft tracking and in-car entertainment. This facilitates extraction of useful information for improving the performance and quality of the product, along with managing recalls and making updates more effective.
India is becoming the fastest growing telecom market, providing numerous opportunities in the IoT space to both global and domestic players. It will become critical for enterprises to forge long-lasting partnerships and collaborations for realizing the full potential of this wonderful technology. Nonetheless, it will result in a win-win situation for everyone – efficient enterprises, empowered customers and connected governance! Farhana Haque, Vice President & Business Head- IoT, Vodafone India. – Business World