By now you have probably heard of the Internet of Things many times.
But you may not yet understand what it is. Maybe the simplest way to think about it is realize houses and other buildings are going to become much smarter and more connected over the upcoming years. You may have already seen this with thermostats.
While many don’t understand the Internet of Things now they will soon as growth is predicted to be tremendous.
Business Insider predicts that connected home device shipments will increase at a compound annual rate of 67% over the next five years (this is faster than smartphones or tablets). This results in an astounding 1.8 billion units they are predicting to be shipped in 2019. They describe connected home devices as all smart appliances (such as washers or refrigerators) and energy related devices such as smart thermostats and smart lighting.
In terms of sales, connected-home device sales will account for over $61 billion in revenue this year, but that number will skyrocket at a 52% compound annual growth rate to $490 billion in the year 2019.
But how do you seize your opportunity?
Start by evaluating the market to look for opportunities that overlap with your business capabilities. Many businesses will have new opportunities where they can extend their products and services in a meaningful way into their consumers homes. For instance, look at Amazon’s Dash Button that lets customers order Tide, Glad trash bags and more than 250 other brands with the touch of a finger.
Are their area of your business that overlap with the opportunities presented by the Internet of Things? Sometimes the answers aren’t always obvious, try to think out side the box and see if you can find a connection that isn’t necessarily the first and most obvious idea. Perhaps speak with an iPhone application developer or Android application developer to see if they have ideas of how to integrate external devices with mobile applications and your products. Application developers are are the front lines and understand the industry trends.
Once you identify areas of opportunity remember that it is all about the execution.
How do you make your idea the most user friendly? How do you make your user experience intuitive? Do you have the feature set and hardware that is right for your opportunity? Are you giving your consumers what they want? or will your idea fall flat because you failed to consider how your customers interact with your brand?
Having and idea is only part of the battle as execution is essential.
Photo: Scott Cawley (Flikr) http://bit.ly/1QXavNW