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The IoT poised to accelerate in coming years

3/23/2016 8:21:21 AM

Arguably the most popular piece of the Internet of Things thus far has been smartwatches, which were among the first ultra-mobile devices to be released onto the market that fall into the trend's scope as well. The average business is likely already beginning to see at least some demand for smartwatch enablement and support from its employees, or is offering the gadgets through a corporate device policy. 

Either way, smartwatches represent the tip of the iceberg for the larger wearables segment of the IoT, which is expected to excel in the coming years with respect to orders, shipments and market revenues. Smartwatches and other wearables will surely present unique and progressive opportunities to leaders who want to boost employee engagement, drive productivity and maintain optimal communication across their lines of business in the coming years, but management will be key. 

A look ahead
International Data Corporation recently released a report on the wearables market and explained that smartwatches are not only enjoying strong growth right now, but they are also beginning to evolve in terms of market offerings. As always, the increased competition seen as a result of rising demand has pushed manufacturers toward more innovative ventures, and one can expect the smartwatch to become even more advanced in the near future. 

According to the analysts, the wearable market at large is forecast to expand by 38.2 percent this year compared to 2015, with 110 units shipped by December. IDC also provided insights related to manufacturers' behaviors and the likely demands of consumers through the end of the decade. 

Smartwatches are beginning to evolve. Smartwatches are beginning to evolve.

"Although smartwatches like the Apple Watch or Android Wear devices capture the spotlight, they will only account for a quarter of all wearables in 2016 and will grow to about a third by 2020," IDC Mobile Device Trackers Research Analyst Jitesh Ubrani explained. "It's time to start thinking about smarter watches - traditional watches with some sort of fitness or sleep tracking but are unable to run apps - built by classic watch makers. These devices have the potential of making the technology invisible while still integrating themselves within day-to-day activities."

What's more, business leaders will certainly want to begin researching the ways in which the apps will need to be managed a few years down the line, as manufacturers are already beginning to cultivate larger, more diverse app stores specifically for wearables.

How will firms excel?
Should an organization have a lackluster mobility program in place, or a less reliable approach to data management and IT service delivery at large, it would likely struggle to get the most out of the IoT and, more specifically, wearables. However, by tightening up shop in IT departments and leveraging the support of managed services firms for maintenance, service delivery, security and other solutions, companies will enjoy a smoother deployment process and greater returns over time. 

A healthy combination of cloud computing technology, mobile devices, and application management software, security tools and network fortifications, smartwatches are sure to have a positive impact on businesses. 

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