Many organizations today are looking for things that talk to the Internet. Sensors, cameras, medical equipment and even snowplows are on that wish list.
The “Internet of Things” is not.
The municipalities that come to systems integrator AGT International are already sold on so-called IoT technologies, such as wireless traffic sensors embedded in streets, said Gadi Lenz, a senior technical fellow at AGT.
But they aren’t interested in IoT, nor in “smart cities,” another term that’s been getting a lot of play lately. What they want, Lenz said, is a solution to their problems.
Even Cisco Systems, one of the biggest evangelists for IoT, thinks the concept still needs some explaining. Enterprises, cities and utilities all could stand to benefit from IoT, but first they need a better idea of how it can help them do their jobs.
“We definitely need to spend more time educating the market,” Inbar Lasser-Raab, vice president of Enterprise Network Solutions, said last week at a meeting at Cisco. Leaders from IT vendors, industrial companies and governments came together there to hash out issues for IoT.
Networked devices have been talking to each other for years. What’s new in so-called IoT is the scale of those networks and the way advanced data analysis can draw conclusions from them. But getting this broad vision off the ground, including getting enterprises to adopt the new technology, raises several challenges, according to participants at last week’s meeting.