The Internet of Things (IoT) has developed a lot throughout the past couple of years and there is a growing number of ways to use it for business development. Kick-start your year with discovering how the IoT can transform your business! In this series of blog posts, you will find out how you can:
- Use Big Data for big ROI
- Create a competitive advantage through Big Data
- Master the art of gaining actionable insights with the IoT
The story of Smart Boards
I will begin with a story. Some parents are really helpful. They are ready, for example, to help their children’s school by buying expensive Smart Boards for their daughter’s or son’s class. That is exactly what happened to one of my friends. He bought a Smart Board for his son’s class. The teachers were happy, and the children were excited about the new possibilities the Smart Board opened for them.
The days passed. Besides the daily routine, my friend almost forgot the kind help he had given. Then, on one of the sunny, sleepy early autumn afternoons, as he waited for his son at the school, he ran into the headmaster. He remembered the Smart Board and asked enthusiastically what the situation was, what was it used for? The answer started with an uncertain response. “Unfortunately, our colleagues are not really able to take advantage of the opportunities offered by this tool, but sometimes, a couple of images related to the actual lesson’s material are shown on the Smart Board for the children….”
Optimizing the story
What… – my friend thought – a very expensive Smart Board used as a very cheap and simple projector?!
I hope you understand why I do not want to share the exact words my friend used to tell the story, as they are not important at all from the point of view of this article, but they could certainly prove the beauty of the Hungarian language, which is quite famous for its very sophisticated swearing.
This sort of sub-optimal use of technology is quite common nowadays. And not only in case of a school, but at a much higher scale as well.
The story told above, jumped into my mind a few weeks ago, when I was reading an article about how the Internet of Things (IoT) evolved, where it is now and how the future of IoT may look. The IoT has opened up many opportunities for businesses. Some of them are obvious, some less so.
Big data for big ROI
IoT projects are not cheap, not at all, and an expensive technology, like a Smart Board, used sub-optimally, will lead to shocking results. However, used optimally, it will give a good return on investment (ROI) and give your business a competitive advantage.
In this article, I will look at how and why you should use – in my opinion – the best Big Data platform to leverage your IoT investments, optimize your collected information, and utilize a full blown data analytics solution. This concept is not only the foundation of your IoT ROIs, but it can also help you to make a big step towards into Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). These are things that sound really trendy today. However, investment in these technologies now is important for future use.
Data on Big Data
Before we go deeper into the topic, I would like to speak a few words about Big Data in general, as this topic obviously relates to the IoT world.
The term “big data” was first used in the modern sense back in 2005 by Roger Magoulas of O’Reilly Publishing. Big data is all about the massive amounts of information that modern computing creates. Since the advent of the Internet and more lately the IoT, aka Internet-enabled devices, big data has really exploded. Global production of data will reach astronomical levels in the coming years. Analysts IDC, predict that the Global Datasphere will grow from 33 Zettabytes in 2018 to 175 Zettabytes by 2025. This is a lot of data to analyze: 1 ZB = 1021 bytes (1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes) = one trillion gigabytes.
65% of this data will be created and managed by businesses with nearly 20% of it being critical to our daily lives (Forbes).Forbes, 2017
One of the most interesting items related to data growth is that by 2025 “an average connected person anywhere in the world will interact with connected devices nearly 4,800 times per day – one interaction every 18 seconds”
Also, the amount of the data “that’s subject to data analysis will grow by a factor of 50 where more than a quarter of all data created will be real-time” (Forbes).
Coupled with increases in data generation, the modern business is under pressure to make the most of this data. But how will they cope with this data deluge? This is one of the biggest challenges businesses will face in the near future.
Deciding on what is important and what is not, is a crucial first step. However, even if you store only part of the generated data, putting it to effective use is key. You want to use it more optimally than previously. Not to mention that an immense amount of the created data will be real-time data. Therefore, you must accept that approximately a quarter of it will become obsolete very quickly.
Now we can see which big data challenges we’ll have to face in the near future. In the next post of this series, we’ll go back to IoT.