For businesses aiming for digital transformation, the IoT is now the leading technology to deploy, according to research from global mobile satellite communications company Inmarsat.
As well as being the leading technology, adoption and integration of IoT is the number one priority for 92 percent of organizations to deliver on their digital transformation ambitions. Respondents place IoT way ahead of other technologies as a priority, including machine learning and robotics, cited by 38 percent and 35 percent, respectively. In fourth place is 3D printing, taking 31 percent of the vote.
The findings have been released as part of The Inmarsat Research Programme report, The Future of IoT in Enterprise 2017, conducted on Inmarsat’s behalf by research company Vanson Bourne. The survey polled 500 senior respondents, divided evenly across the agritech, energy production, transportation, and mining sectors, from organizations with more than 1,000 employees in EMEA, the Americas and Asia-Pacific.
According to Inmarsat’s survey, IoT is streets ahead because almost all of the respondents (97 percent) are experiencing, or expect to experience, significant benefits from their IoT deployments. The benefits will come, they believe, from improved service delivery capabilities (47 percent), better health and safety (46 percent), and greater productivity (45 percent).
Inevitably, security concerns persist. Almost half (47 percent) of respondents believe they will need to change their approach to security, while 45 percent believe there is a lack of skills in the industry to deal with the security challenges that IoT presents. Twenty-nine percent, meanwhile, worry that connectivity issues threaten to derail their IoT deployments before they have even begun.
“Collaboration is key”
Paul Gudonis, president of Inmarsat Enterprise, commented: “The development and deployment of IoT is a new phenomenon spreading over every industry, in every part of the world and this research has confirmed that IoT is the leading technology in digital transformation, taking a steady lead over other forms of innovation.
“IoT acts as the eyes and ears of organizations and its value comes from how the data it collects is used to improve effectiveness across an organization. As such, it is unsurprising that so many organizations are deploying IoT to propel their digital transformation initiatives,” he continued.
However, this is not to imply that challenges are absent, he added. The research points to clear concerns – namely, security, skills, and connectivity. “The increasing interconnectivity of devices, teamed with a heightened cyber-security landscape and a short supply of relevant skills, brings an array of issues. To overcome these challenges, collaboration is key,” he said.
“Developing new technology is complex and draws on many different types of skills. Reliable network infrastructure providers, that can operate anywhere in the world, need to work closely with end-user businesses to make sure they understand their operational needs.”