IoT Momentum: Success Keys = Data Integrity & Ecosystem Partners
Internet of Data (IoD)
Business strategy principles are being transformed in the new digital services economy, incorporating Internet of Things (IoT), Internet of Everything (IoE), and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).
Fast-moving companies are establishing new product and service hybrids that disrupt their own markets and generate fresh revenue streams with IoT, IoE, and IIoT.
Most business owners, corporate leaders, and managers would agree that a company's most valuable asset is its data.
"Without data you're just another person with an opinion."
- W. Edwards Deming
Deming, a manufacturing guru and statistician, stated this decades ago, encapsulating the data-driven mindset now permeating many functions and facets of business and government; e.g., smart cities.
IoT is about data, not things. Instead of a focus on physical assets and economies of scale, the drivers of IoT success reside in connectivity, analytics, and insights driven by accurate, secure, actionable data. Data, theories, and decisions must be unified persistently - analogous to the past as it is today, with advanced computing, cloud, and intelligence software.
“I never guess. It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.”
- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Author of Sherlock Holmes
Data Is Only Useful if It's Accurate
The axiom, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it,” is spot-on, but if you can’t measure “it” correctly, then there is no point, because bad data leads to bad decisions. This is prevalent predominantly when organizations and individuals don’t realize the data presented is wrong.
Data is only as accurate as the sensors and systems, combined with some sort of actual business knowledge that can help separate the signal from the noise.
Building an IoT strategy for less-than-accurate data produces dubious results.
IoT Data Accuracy Is Challenging
In today’s digital world, newly deployed sensors retrofitted on legacy equipment often require data translation from original sensors that use older, non-Internet-compliant protocols.
Changing out old sensors creates an alphabet soup of data. Furthermore, several network IoT standards are in flux.
On top of that, add various greenfield IoT deployments that may be intermingled at some point with legacy deployments—plus network technologies, protocols, firmware and software advances that will assuredly materialize in the future—and you can start to imagine the systems-design complexity and other challenges to stable data accuracy.
To accomplish design simplicity and data accuracy, technology companies must collaborate.
“Smart” IoT Solutions Demand “Smart” Partnerships
To succeed in the IoT era, businesses need to develop and manage complex ecosystems around themselves.
Selecting strategic partners with whom to collaborate is becoming a life or death issue for firms and organizations (The Economist: “Managing Complexity” by Robin Wood), and it is amplified when it comes to realizing IoT success.
Barriers between companies, which used to be solid and absolute, are now permeable. For generations, companies built moats, separating themselves from their competitors. Today, the most successful companies build bridges. And that's only the beginning.
“We’ll begin to see a series of ‘strange bedfellows’ as partnerships emerge to help the growing demand M2M/IoT is putting on networks. Very few companies will be able to go it alone to deliver an end-to-end experience to their M2M/IoT customers. Many traditional – and as many non-traditional – partnerships will emerge in 2016 to reach this goal.”
– RCR Wireless News: John Horn, CEO Ingenu
Strategic partnerships and alliances augment complementary resources and capabilities, enabling organizations to grow and expand more quickly and efficiently. Partnering companies must collaborate routinely in order to gain scale; visibility, velocity, and competitive advantage; innovate; and accelerate time-to-market.
Especially fast-growing companies rely heavily on alliances to extend their technical and operational resources. They save time and boost productivity by not having to develop their own backbone resources from scratch. This frees them to concentrate on innovation and their core business.
Undercurrents Compel IoT Ecosystem Partnerships
To summarize, talking about and recognizing the benefits of the IoT is easy, but doing the actual work to integrate and correlate the data and interconnect factories, buildings, fields, homes, or even cars and trains, and other fixed and mobile things, is far more challenging.
No one company owns the entire end-to-end IoT solutions stack (sensors + microcontrollers + modules + gateways + connectivity + edge computing (Fog) + data center + cloud + platforms + applications + security + analytics + services + billing, etc.), and that’s where industry-specific and IoT ecosystem partners are emerging to support crossing the IoT threshold.
Transporting key data to the internet and figuring out correlations in the data often require industry expertise. That’s why industry partner programs from AT&T, Cisco, Dell, GE, HP, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, SAP, Verizon, and others are proliferating. They actually mean something beyond logos on slides.
"IoT is more than big, it’s pervasive and inevitable! Computers, the internet, and wireless communications all changed nearly everything about the way we live and work—and with convergence plus cost reduction, that scale of transformation is feasible with the Internet of Things—and assuredly will be realized faster thanks to IoT ecosystem partnerships."
- Bob Newkirk, Chief Advisor
Follow Bob: @bobnewkirk | https://www.linkedin.com/in/newkirk
Bob Newkirk is a corporate and industry digital transformation evangelist focused on building a critical mass of support for the Internet-of-Things (IoT) evolution that’s transforming and disrupting traditional markets and status quo business models by technologically enabling “connected everything”, “service economy” and “share economy” paradigms.
Bob specializes in developing extensive sales and marketing strategies, such as comprehensive go-to-market models, channel program innovation and optimization, and alliance partner development including executing influential joint marketing network campaigns.
Bob accentuates the disruption cloud platforms (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), social and business networks, and the Internet are having on outmoded sales and marketing strategies. He works with clients and firms to help their marketing and sales initiatives gain traction and achieve success in today's technology-centric, multi-channel markets.