With the Internet of Things being such a global
phenomenon, no one really knows where the next breakthrough will originate.
There’s a substantial amount of experimentation going on all around the world, along with some hefty corporate
and government investments.
Of course, there are countless, major IoT initiatives in the U.S., as we regularly write about here.
But there are no boundaries on where that next big IoT
idea that can scale globally can come from. Here’s just a sampling of some of the IoT activities outside the United States:
- Italy – The Barilla Group, the well-known pasta
and sauce maker, is piloting an IoT platform so that consumers can receive more information about the product they’re eating. The idea is to increase awareness of the safety of food along the
entire food production process. Data from the packaging is fed into a website that consumers can access by scanning a QR code on the package they have. While this is currently being done locally,
there are larger implications, since Barilla products are exported to more than 125 countries. The other obvious implication is that advertising or other messaging could easily ride along with the
food processing information.
- China – With the world’s largest Internet user base, China is expected to dominate the Asia-Pacific market in IoT, accounting for 59% of
market opportunity and one out of every five connected devices globally, according to IDC. Big funding ($16 billion) is coming from the state-run China Development Bank. And Chinese internet giant
Baidu is partnering with BMW to launch a highly automated car before the end of this year. No doubt Google and Apple are watching that. China is also where more than 1,000 Pizza Hut locations are
installing beacons to trigger in-restaurant messaging.
- Amsterdam – Likely the ‘smartest’ office space ever build, the Edge in Amsterdam contains 28,000 sensors
that track or manage motion, light, temperature and humidity. The building senses when an employee arrives and opens the parking garage gate and has automatic robots to patrol the building at
night. It does a lot more, but you get the idea.
- India – A large majority (85%) of Indian consumers prefer a universal remote control feature in their smartphone,
according to a survey by Peel Technologies. An infrared-enabled device that works through a mobile app was recently introduced in India, where the connected device market is estimated to reach $12
billion in revenue within five years.
- United Kingdom – Innovate UK is staging a competition to select an IoT city, to which it will provide up to $15 million in government
funding. The idea is to incent innovative businesses to create collaborative and research projects around areas such as transportation, energy and economic opportunities. And in London, beacons are
being installed in 4,000 of those black cabs so passengers can receive advertising messages as they are driven about.
These are but a few of the many IoT activities outside the U.S.
that are tapping into the Internet of Things. There are many more.
And as the number of connected objects and platforms proliferate and connect with consumers, they will open new doors to
marketing and advertising. Some of those doors may open rather quickly.