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What is the role of Data and Analytics in the development of the Internet of Things (IoT)

Waqar Zaidi
Anyone working in IT knows that the ever-evolving state of play means changes are continuous and inevitable; yet only a few innovations truly revolutionise the way we live, work and play. The coming of age of the Internet of Things (IoT) is one of those moments, and now questions mount as to how best to utilise the huge resource of information that is available from such technology. 

A key factor in developments will centre on how adaptations in Data and Analytics can be successfully linked to the new working and domestic environments that the IoT will create.

Assistants make the changes

The latest range of voice controlled assistants from major companies like Google and Amazon are perhaps one of the most obvious ways that an IoT culture is already entering homes and offices. These devices – being essentially gateways that trigger responses from other connected smart devices or services – are already having an impact in Data Analytics because they often ask for information themselves.

This means that there is now a classification of Data known as ‘Internet of Things query results’ (IoTQR). These search results (based on the query phrases consumers say to a smart device) actually have significant differences from the more familiar search engine results page (SERP) data. 

Online marketers are already taking into account how these query phrases and keyword search patterns should drive their efforts to maximise traffic and website hits whilst using newly developed analytics to process the information. On a wider scale, companies can benefit from using data analytics as it allows for more effective decision making and the fine-tuning of business practices. 

By using IoT connected devices, it’s possible to gain information that is even more complete, detailed and organised. As developments continue, this analysis and information gathering could be performed at greater speed, efficiency and accuracy. 

Growth trends

Although most of us are still a few steps away from (for example) accepting that our fridge will directly contact an online delivery service to arrange a fresh delivery of milk; we’re not miles away. A market report from Credence Research Inc – titled ‘Internet Of Things Market- Growth, Share, Opportunities, Competitive Analysis and Forecast 2016 – 2023’ has revealed that the global IoT market is expected to grow steadily over the next few years. 

The report suggests that IoT “has become a mainstream technology in the IT industry, utilised to connect all the smart objects over an integrated network through internet” and cites the healthcare and transportation sectors as having adopted the tech to a great degree already. It also forecasts a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for the sector in excess of 19% between 2016 and 2023.

With more IoT devices being autonomously linked to the internet, there comes the growing realisation that anyone working in Data and Analytics must contend with an increased awareness of privacy and security issues amongst the public end users. However, the bigger picture means that living in a world of interconnected devices, with each relaying information to a global network of product and service providers, will soon be as normal as going online via your smartphone.

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