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Experts Share 18 Surprising IoT Statistics for 2019

IoT Spending Statistics | Stats About IoT Adoption | The Financial Impact of IoT | IoT Use Cases by the Numbers | IoT Statistics in Manufacturing | The Future of IoT

You’ve seen the charts, you’ve read the reports, you’ve been to the conferences: IoT statistics and reports indicate that everyone in the world owns a connected device!

IoT stock photo showing connected world
Example of a classic IoT stock photo

Ok, maybe not, but it seems like every day there’s a new report predicting the billions, even trillions of dollars that will be spent on IoT solutions in the upcoming years.

Look, we all know the IoT is here to stay, and the market is growing exponentially. That’s why I reached out to some experts in the field and asked to hear about the most surprising IoT statistic they’ve come across recently and their thoughts on it.

IoT Statistics: Spending

coins on a table

Ok, I know I promised surprising statistics but let’s face it, what’s an article about IoT statistics without some numbers on spending?

IDC has predicted that IoT spending will reach $745 billion this year and surpass the $1 trillion mark in 2022. That’s a 15% increase over 2018’s $646 billion. –IDC, Worldwide Semiannual Internet of Things Spending Guide

According to the same report, the U.S. and China will be the spending the most at $194 billion and $182 billion respectively. They are followed by Japan, Germany, Korea, France, and the U.K. However, the fastest increase in spending growth will be from Latin American countries: Mexico, Colombia, and Chile.

Who is Using IoT? Stats About IoT Adoption

Manufacturing Icons

Aaron S. Birnbaum, Chief Security Officer at Seron Security LLC said, “As a security professional, the IoT explosion has been great for my business, but the reasons behind that are due to an appalling lack of security safeguards by the manufacturers.”

According to a stat he shared, there are over 23 billion IoT connected devices worldwide. This number is expected to reach 30 billion by 2020 and over 60 billion by the end of 2025.

A number that I found surprising comes from Gartner. Their report predicts that by 2020 more than 65% of enterprises will adopt IoT products.

However, the report also states that a lack of data science specialists will inhibit 75% of organizations from achieving the full potential of IoT. –Leading the IoT: Gartner Insights on How to Lead in a Connected World

Ian McClarty, President & CEO of PhoenixNAP Global IT Services shared a statistic from Business Insider. They say that 75% of cars will connect to the internet by 2020.

Some of these cars will drive an park on their own, and others will learn the habits and preferences of drivers.

Ian thinks that, “cars connected to the internet of things could communicate with tons of other devices to make life much easier for everyone involved. People will be able to turn their cars on and off from their smartphones, and they can even see their car’s exact location if someone tries stealing it.”

cattle in a field

However, there are some places that are not completely ready to start implementing IoT solutions.

John McDonald, CEO of ClearObject says, “Nearly 40 percent of rural areas lack reliable internet to make IoT in agriculture work seamlessly, if at all. AgTech solutions are growing faster than ever, and it’s kind of like putting the cart before the horse to develop IoT solutions without first creating a sustainable infrastructure to make it all possible.”

The Financial Impact of IoT

Trisala Chandaria, Co-Founder and President of Temboo shared a stat from McKinsey’s 2018 survey of IoT practitioners.

The report states, “the first 15 or so IoT use cases typically have a modest payback—and the average payback continues to rise until companies have implemented around 30 use cases.”

The chart below illustrates this point – companies that implement around 20 use cases will have a greater impact than those that only implement 10.

IoT statistics - Chart showing financial impact per IoT use case

However, even a small improvement can have a large impact on the world manufacturing operations.

GE estimates that a 1% improvement in productivity across their global manufacturing base could contribute $10-15 trillion to worldwide GDP over the next 15 years.

Ian McClarty also shared an interesting statistic about Barcelona’s smart city efforts. The city estimates that they save around $37 million per year from smart lighting alone.

IoT Use Cases by the Numbers

manufacturing workers

IDC’s Worldwide Semiannual Internet of Things Spending Guide has an overview on IoT uses cases that are predicted to get the most investment in 2019.

They estimate manufacturing operations to have the highest spending at $100 billion, followed by production asset management ($44.2 billion), smart home ($44.1 billion), and freight monitoring ($41.7 billion).

Another interesting statistic from that report outlines the fastest growth in spending on IoT use cases.

It’s expected that airport facility automation, electric vehicle charging, agriculture field monitoring, bedside telemetry, and in-store contextualized marketing will be the top growth use cases.

IoT Statistics in the Manufacturing Industry

With manufacturing topping all other industries in IoT spending, it seems worthwhile to take a look at some of the numbers to find out more.

bottles on a production line

To start with, McKinsey reports that the average factory today is 25 years old, with machinery that’s going on nine years old.

It seems like those machines would benefit from an IIoT monitoring solution and according to this article, 30% of manufacturers surveyed believe that the IIoT will help them better understand machine health in their factories.

Circling back to the number of use cases, Cisco’s research shows that 61% of manufacturers who have implemented an IoT strategy believe, “they have barely begun to scratch the surface of what IoT can do for their business”.

Terry O’Shea, CTO of Nytec shared his thoughts on IoT in manufacturing as well. According to this article, a GE jet engine produces 5,000 data points per second which tallies up to 500GB for a single flight.

Coupled with this statistic, which shows that there are 39.8 million flights predicted in 2019, that comes out to 109,041 flights per day.

Terry says, “If they were all GE engines then that’s 5.452054795E16Bytes of data a day, or 54 Petabytes of data a day from aircraft engines alone, I’d hate to see that AWS storage bill.”

Chart showing IoT statistics - YoY Canadian manufacturers use of IoT technology
Image source

Another expert we spoke to highlighted the surprising fact that many manufacturers, at least in Canada, are not currently using IIoT technologies in their operations.

Dale Kehler, VP of Product Services at SYSPRO Canada says, “It’s concerning that so many manufacturers are not adopting digital manufacturing technologies. Customers are pushing for more customization, smarter products and better delivery — all of which are achievable with IIoT. Those who take advantage of these new technologies benefit from quantifiable gains in production efficiency, competitiveness and flexibility to respond to market demands.”

Looking to the Future: Where IoT is Going Next

Illustration of a man looking through binoculars

Now that we’ve seen where we are, its only reasonable to ask what is coming next. While we can’t make any statements for sure, future projections have showed some surprising numbers.

One such surprising statistic comes from Cisco who says that only .06% of things that could be connected to the internet currently are. That leaves a lot of room for growth obviously.

Looking forward to 2025, McKinsey has estimated that IoT has the potential to drive improved productivity to the tune of $36 trillion in operating costs across multiple industries including healthcare, mining, and manufacturing.

Speaking of the future, jobs are something that are always a concern when it comes to automation and new technologies.

But according to John McDonald, we shouldn’t worry too much. He says, “Figures from McKinsey Global Institute show that almost 65 percent of auto industry jobs have the potential to be automated within the next 10 to 15 years. Some argue that a rise in automation will replace jobs, but with a low unemployment rate and access to talent a challenge for so many, I’m optimistic the jobs aren’t gone for good, just shifting.”

John also shared his thoughts on the future of machine learning. He says, “With Google’s recent announcement that Google Duplex can make hair appointments and order pizzas, machine learning is closer than ever to passing the Turing Test, or becoming indistinguishable from a human being. This means we’re closer than ever to chatbots that can more seamlessly address customer issues, even autonomous vehicles that can sense when we’re tired and order us coffee at the next highway exit.”

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