Refrigerators that report if you are out of milk. Washing machines that order more washing powder from Amazon. The car that picks up its driver right on time from their front door. Thanks to examples like these, the Internet of Things has received a great deal of media attention. Many are astounded; some remain unconvinced. But everyone has had some contact with the IoT.
“At the moment mostly consumer-oriented products such as smart watches or self-driving cars are at the foreground of the Internet of Things,” says Harald Bauer, Director of the consultancy McKinsey’s Frankfurt office. “However, over the long term business-to-business applications for use in 'Industry 4.0' for example or digitalized logistics have even more potential.” According to Bauer, in machine engineering, for example, “data-based business models are possible which clear installations for use according to availability.” Up to this point, a fraction of the production data accumulated is being used.
According to a recent McKinsey study, the IoT can create global added economic value of up to 11 trillion dollars in 2025. This corresponds to around eleven percent of global economic performance. According to McKinsey, the Internet of Things (IoT) has the greatest potential to influence factories (up to 3.7 trillion dollars economic surplus value), cities (1.7 trillion dollars) and the healthcare industry (1.6 trillion dollars).
The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is already a reality in many places. As analysts from IDC have discovered, every fourth German manufacturing company utilized a predictive maintenance solution in 2014. Sensors record the condition of machines and pass on the data online to analysis software, which then calculates the best time to carry out maintenance.
The IoT has even arrived in the countryside. At CeBIT 2015, the leading agricultural engineering firm CLAAS showed how digitally integrated farming can work. A farm management system integrated into tractors collects data on machine deployment, livestock husbandry, the harvest and herbicide use. Harvesters can be guided within two centimeters across cultivated areas using satellite navigation. Based on data from the last harvest, fields are fertilized only where they need to be. According to CLAAS spokesman Wolfram Eberhardt the use of “intelligent machines” that communicate with each other and align work processes without human intervention is on the rise. “Machines autonomously improve work processes and relieve their operators. The Internet of Things is becoming reality,” says Eberhardt.
More impressive evidence can be found at the “IoT SOLUTIONS” cluster at CeBIT 2016. Market leaders from various sectors are using concrete examples to show how competitive advantage can be gained from the latest developments. IoT SOLUTIONS combines an exhibition, professional conference and B2B matchmaking - in the strong synergy environment of “Communications & Networks” in Hall 13.