What Is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)

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By: R. Scott Raynovich

The Internet of Things (IoT) has taken the world by storm, as technology experts and investors take a look at the technology that will be required to network and secure just about any device on earth -- billions of devices and machines including automobiles, appliances, and smartphones.

The IoT is often divided into two subsegments -- consumer IoT (connected devices such as watches, phones, etc.) and Industrial IoT (IIoT), for connected equipment in the industrial and commercial space. Both are massive and complex markets, with the IIoT alone comprising dozens of different types of technologies to secure, monitor, and analyze industrial and commercial devices and equipment.

Both IoT and IIoT mean that any device or product on the planet (or maybe even outside the planet) can be connected and used to collect and analyze data to provide better efficiency and more advanced applications.

How the IIoT Targets Efficiency

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The IIoT has great appeal to many industries and global enterprises. Think of it as a way to upgrade the technology of industry to gain efficiency through real-time information feedback and efficiency.

To give you a few examples:

  • Buildings can be equipped with IoT software to make them "smart" so that they can react to environmental changes as well as detect or even prevent problems (fires, system outages, etc.).
  • The automotive industry will be revolutionized by the IoT as sensors make cars more intelligent, enable real-time monitoring, and eventually drive themselves.
  • Mobile devices can be connected to IoT platforms to provide a wide range of data that can be plugged in and analyzed to create new opportunities and applications for businesses.
  • IoT can be used for remote monitoring systems in healthcare or to help in elder care.

The IIoT can also be broken down into segments including communications services, cloud platforms, networking devices, chips and sensors, and analytics software.

Companies Target IIoT for Technology Upgrades

Many experts view both the IoT and the IIoT as some of the largest growth technology markets on earth. They both have large opportunity, opening up new opportunities to create value in both consumer and business markets. IoT technology can also apply to a wide range of industry verticals, including consumer products, automotive, healthcare, industrial, networking, and semiconductor markets, just to name a few.

The IIoT has become fertile ground for M&A across both the industrial and technology space, as large-scale manufacturing and Fortune 500 companies look to upgrade their technologies. This trend is likely to accelerate, driven by the need for large industrial and manufacturing companies to become more technology savvy. One of the best examples of this is provided by GE, which has built an IIoT cloud platform called Predix, which is connected to manufacturing platforms to conduct real-time analysis.


For a more detailed, professional analysis of the IIoT market, purchase our Ultimate Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) Report, which covers a wide range of communications and cloud technologies that are being applied to businesses around the world to provide connectivity, analysis, automation, and optimization of a range of industrial applications (50 Pages).