Canonical argues IoT monetisation bigger challenge than security for professionals

You can try and clue up on the Internet of Things (IoT), read all the articles and go to all the meetings. But the question remains: can we make money on this?

According to a new study from Canonical, the company behind Linux operating system Ubuntu, more than half (53%) of industry professionals say quantifying return on investment (ROI) was their biggest immediate challenge. This was followed by device security and privacy, cited by 45% of those polled, and lack of IoT infrastructure, cited by 40%.

More than a third (34%) of respondents, comprising developers, vendors and enterprise users, added that ‘quantifying the business benefits’ of the IoT should be the primary goal to encourage greater adoption. A quarter (24%) argued an improved understanding of the technology’s benefits was key, while 17% opted for improved security.

Given monetising the IoT was seen as the biggest issue, the report delved into various routes for achieving ROI. Almost four in five (78%) said they would expect to make money through value added services, with hardware rentals (57%), one off hardware fees (55%), ongoing software and security fees (55%) and consultancy and deployment (54%) all much of a muchness below.

One other method considered by the report is an IoT app store, or an ‘app store for things’. Organisations can theoretically offer add-ons to existed connected devices, tying in to the 55% who said they wanted to make money through ongoing software fees.

“In a world where every connected device generates data, the opportunities for monetising this data are limited only by your access and your imagination,” the report notes. “We’re likely to see a number of until now unpredicted methods of monetisation emerge as the industry develops further.”

You can read the full report here.

Postscript: As part of its research, Canonical used Meltwater, a monitoring tool, to scrape a year’s worth of news and found more than 23,000 English language articles had been published on IoT security between June 2016 and 2017. This publication is responsible for 94 and counting.

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