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Peter Waterhouse, InformationWeek
Peter Waterhouse, InformationWeek
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Forget 'Things' – It's The Internet Of Business Models

With the Internet of Things, sensors and telematics don't mean much if they're not helping disrupt traditional business models.

As with all new and exciting technologies, it's easy to get carried away with hype. Certainly the Internet of Things, with its promise of connecting homes and cars and smart grids, falls into that category.

The most newsworthy example is the battle brewing between Google and Apple to win control of the consumer market. Through a series of acquisitions, these two giants are locked in a mega-struggle to make their smartphones the central element of a much bigger market -- the smart home -- including intelligently connected and controlled lighting, heating, and entertainment.

So it's easy to assume there's a bucket of money to be made with the Internet of Things. Well maybe, but it's not going to be straightforward and no one has the buying power of Google and Apple.

[ Insurers Behind on Data Mastery: SMA. ]

Success in the Internet of Things will come to those who look beyond the disruptive technology. Indeed, as former Intel CEO Andy Groves perfectly put it: "Disruptive technologies is a misnomer. What it is, is trivial technology that screws up your business model."

That's a great observation, especially with the Internet of Things where falling prices are making the technology more readily available -- so if you're looking to make money out of manufacturing home sensors, maybe think again because you'll be up against stiff competition, even from someone with some electronic smarts and $35 to spend on a Raspberry Pi.

Focusing on sensor technologies won't be enough for businesses to thrive. Success will come to those who realize that sensors, telematics, machine to machine (M2M), and other Internet of Things wizardry are just the nuts-and-bolts. What really counts are the software services, apps, and APIs that bring it all together -- and with that comes business model disruption.

[ Read the rest of this article on InformationWeek. ]

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