”Things” and the applications/services that support them are changing the way we live. Wearables in the sports and health sectors will grow to nearly 170 million devices by 2017 — an annual growth rate of 41 percent. Specific to the enterprise, if you thought the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) craze was a headache, just wait until button cameras, smart watches, fitness trackers, and connected glasses are a daily occurrence in the office. Workplace wearables will be a huge challenge in the coming years as more devices, clothing and pretty much any 'thing' with a chip or sensor become commonplace in society.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in The Wearable Future report found that 77% of respondents thought that a top benefit of wearable technology is the potential to make employees more productive and efficient. If the technology is simple to use and integrates with other devices, that should boost productivity and lift profits. Industries that could benefit immediately from the wearable market include:
Entertainment will be more 'immersive and fun'
Social Media gets real time updates from clothes
Gaming can be more visually and physically engaging
Advertisers will also want that space someone’s back
Healthcare will track vitals
Retail could offer “pleasant, efficient” shopping experiences
Clothing is just one example of many. Organizations will also be able to manage assets and office building more efficiently. Imagine the connected home automation today, but geared toward commercial properties. Security, HVAC, assets, lighting, employee access and so forth is all handled by sensors and monitors. Smart cities are already being built with IoT on a metropolis scale. Energy, environment, street lights, sanitation, water supply, transportation and other civic related functions are all automatically controlled by meters.
The automotive industry is also taking advantage of sensors with self-driving cars, in car Wi-Fi, seamless integration with mobile phones, car to car communications, software updates and even their own in-car apps for streaming entertainment, navigation and other connected activities.
By all accounts, everything that is a noun – a person, place or thing – at some point, will have or wear a sensor/actuator/IP-chip that gathers some sort of data and all that traffic is headed for a data center somewhere. The digital society has emerged.