We’ve reached the sharp part of the adoption curve for IoT, as a recent study shows skyrocketing adoption of the technology across all business sectors for a huge range of different purposes.
Vodafone’s annual IoT barometer this month found that 84% of the 1,278 senior IT decision-makers who responded had increased their adoption and use of IoT solutions in the past year. 12% of the respondents had at least 10,000 connected devices in use at their company, while 6% had more than 50,000 in operation.
Big adoption numbers underline that companies are seeing tangible upsides from their IoT deployments. The survey found that virtually all – 95% - of respondents said they had realized measurable advantages from their implementation of the technology. Just over half said that IoT is either enhancing existing revenue streams or opening up new ones, which could help explain why 88% of those experiencing benefits from IoT report ploughing additional investment into the technology in the past year.
Larger companies tended to lead the way in IoT adoption rates in previous years, but the gap has closed substantially in the latest figures. While smaller (less than 1,000 employees) and medium-sized companies (between 1,000 and 10,000 employees) sat at 12% and 11% respectively in 2014, those numbers have surged to 28% and 31%. Big enterprises with more than 10,000 employees went from 26% in 2013 to 32% in 2017.
Even the omnipresent issue of IoT security seems to be less frightening to companies than before – just 7% of those with bigger (10,000+ devices) deployments said that security was their top concern, although most still acknowledged its importance. Roughly two-thirds of all respondents said that their IoT deployments were “mission-critical” and admitted that a security breach would be catastrophic.
Even though the study found growth largely across the board, some verticals saw particularly strong uptake – retail, transportation and energy all grew at better than 17% year-on-year, while other sectors – including those like healthcare and automotive, where IoT has been popular for somewhat longer – continued to grow at a respectable 9% and 12%, respectively.