Like every other technology, the Internet of Things (IoT) is slowly capturing the imagination of both the consumer and investors. We are seeing more and more dumb devices that are redesigned to get onto the Internet of Things. And as consumers opt for a TV, a refrigerator, and a car that can do more than their traditional functions such as connect to, communicate with or control another appliance, investors are taking notice.
The Internet of Things is growing
Cisco revealed that as early as 2008, there were more devices on the Internet of Things than the number people on earth. In 2010, that number ballooned to at least 12.5 billion and it is set to rise even more to 50 billion in 2020. Meanwhile International Data Corporation is forecasting that the market for Internet of Things will grow to more than $7 trillion by 2020.
In 2014, the IoT is finally getting the attention of public investors. But it still faces several challenges, especially when apps, analytics, services and other high value players are concerned. It will come to a point wherein there will be new companies and categories coming into the market, much like when mobile technology first came out. There is a whole new ecosystem of developers and vendors for IoT in the same manner that there is such an ecosystem for mobile apps.
Overall trends in technology investing
The trends that you see in the Internet of Things betray the fact that public investors today are now looking for non-traditional markets for technology investing. They are no longer looking at conventional technology markets, but are focusing on the next big thing. This means that private technology companies such as Dropbox, Snapchat and Uber are able to get that elusive late stage funding and are able to stay private longer compared to technology companies in the past.
This leads to changes in the way investors communicate. Investors are now investing in companies that they want to invest in, and are no longer confined to investable options available to the public. As such, managers in Internet of Things companies are facing a new challenge. There are investors who want to get on the ground floor of IoT technologies, but the competition is strong. So while the IoT market has become more attractive for investors, there are also a lot of options and companies that you could invest in.
Managers would do well if they could make their companies more attractive from these shifts in investor interests. Instead of just being a me-too company, innovations are now more important. You should be able to demonstrate that you have the ability to take the technology, harness it and ultimately run away with it.
And this is how Four Cornerstone can help you. We offer consulting services that would allow you to use and take advantage of new technologies as they become available. Whether to help improve your operations or to help you come up with a new revenue stream, Four Cornerstone can help.
Photo by Markus Tacker.