GlobalData Plc

As 2018 comes to a close, Cyrus Mewawalla, Head of Thematic Research at GlobalData, offers his predictions on five big tech themes associated with the Internet of Things in 2019:

  1. The automated home – As more home appliances get connected, competitive power will shift from device manufacturers to the IoT cloud software platforms controlling these devices
  2. Autonomous vehicles – In the next few years, silicon photonics will make 3D sensors significantly cheaper, smaller and more accurate, led by Velodyne; however Continental, Bosch and Valeo are catching up
  3. Industrial internet of things – Blockchain will move beyond the financial sector to the industrial sector amid the rising clamour about cybersecurity, with IBM and Accenture in the vanguard
  4. Ambient Commerce – Retailers will use more cameras to track shoppers and a host of computer algorithms to analyse and predict their behaviour and make their shopping experience more efficient
  5. Medical Internet of things – In the wake of 2018’s string of cyber-attacks on hospitals some IT providers, like IBM, will look to rebuild EPR systems from scratch using blockchain technology

 

The automated home

“The development of the ‘smart home’ will occur gradually for the next few years. With voice technology beginning to usurp touchscreen technology, intelligent speakers will be more important than smartphones for home automation functions.

“As more home appliances get connected, competitive power will shift from device manufacturers to the IoT cloud software platforms controlling these devices. Sonos will go from innovation leader in 2015, with its own state-of-the-art ecosystem, to maker of commoditised speaker hardware in 2020 – in the space of just 5 years.”

Autonomous vehicles

“Fully autonomous cars require spinning roof-top 3D LiDAR sensors that enable 360-degree vision. In the next few years, silicon photonics will make 3D sensors significantly cheaper, smaller and more accurate, led by Velodyne; however Continental, Bosch and Valeo are catching up.

“In 2019, competition will rise between automakers and tech companies. Sensor data will be the bargaining chip: while Google Waymo, Uber, Baidu, NuTonomy (Aptiv) and others have the ML capability, it is the automakers like BMW, Audi and GM that own the bulk of the sensor data from their installed fleets.”

Industrial internet of things

“Blockchain will move beyond the financial sector to the industrial sector amid the rising clamour about cybersecurity, with IBM and Accenture in the vanguard.

“With a dearth of top-class software engineers, 2019 will probably see a flurry of ‘aqui-hires’ in the AI space, partly due to the growing demands of Germany’s Industrie 4.0 project and Made in China 2025.”

Ambient commerce

“Retailers will use more cameras to track shoppers and a host of computer algorithms to analyse their every gesture in a bid to predict their behaviour and make their shopping experience more efficient.

“China is pioneering the development of automated, unmanned, walk-in stores carrying up to 500 grocery items based on smartphones, scanning and automatic payment. These are smart, connected halfway houses between convenience stores and kiosks. They will be autonomous mobile units able to service rural areas as well as city outskirts, especially as city infrastructures become smarter as per Alibaba’s Hangzhou based smart city project.”

Medical internet of things

“The big names in electronic patient record (EPR) systems – Cerner and McKesson – will spend much of 2019 upgrading their healthcare IT systems to handle more complex data in the Cloud. In the wake of 2018’s string of cyber-attacks on hospitals some IT providers, like IBM, will look to rebuild EPR systems from scratch using blockchain technology.

“By 2019, Verb, the 2014 joint venture between Google and Johnson & Johnson, will launch a 4.0 surgical platform that integrates AI, visualisation and advanced instrumentation.

“In 2020, Microsoft will become a MedTech player as its HoloLens mixed reality glasses gets adopted in medical training and possibly surgery.

“Similarly, Apple will make healthcare a priority in 2019 with a range of wellness apps and a reboot of Healthkit, Apple’s iOS framework for sharing health and fitness data on apps.”

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