Commentary

Tapping the Value in Connected Objects

Almost everything is going to be on the Net.

Well, not literally everything, but essentially most anything that has an on-off switch.

If it can be turned on and off, it has a good chance of becoming part of the Internet of Things.

Within five years, 30 billion to 40 billion IoT devices will be in place, based in several forecasts.

Even if that number is of by, say, 5 billion, it’s still massive.

But not all connected objects are equal, at least from a consumer value standpoint.

For example, a simple, connected thermostat in a home adds the feature of remote access as well as various automated functions. But adding a screen to the equation can totally change the value, providing in-home messaging in the form of video or text transmissions.

Mega privacy issues aside, connected toys could include speakers and microphones so that children could communicate and interact with a company or friends via social media.

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And then there are objects that had not previously been connected objects.

For example, professional camcorders hadn’t kept up with smartphone cameras for the quick capture and transmission of video. Some camcorders now come with a USB port for a Wi-Fi connection so that video can be sent over a wireless service.

At least one company I know of is shipping a Wi-Fi network camera, with the connected-to-the-Net capability as a core part of the camera.

The key point is that once any of the billions of objects are on the Net, they are information gathering and displaying devices.

After that, they take on more significance than just being an object.

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