The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the increasing connectivity of our devices, creating a network that includes not just computers but also things such as vehicles, wearable devices, and even household appliances. Many industries are exploring the ways that IoT can improve their businesses. It is estimated that nearly 40 billion devices will be part of the IoT, although some estimates place the number much higher. With so many devices connected to the IoT, the benefits of it are nearly endless.
Within supply chains, IoT devices are already beginning to play a role in vehicle and asset monitoring. Vehicle brains (like Routeique’s Vehicle Intelligence Hub) are an IoT device that is currently being used to monitor driving habits, location, and condition of both the vehicle and the cargo within. Other devices improve the functionality of warehousing, and offer the potential to automate large sections of the supply chain. Another major benefit of the IoT is the communication between devices (known as Machine-to-Machine or M2M) which allows the devices to share information with each other rather than data being manually input into each device. This allows for data to be aggregated and examined all together.
The Internet of Things brings us an enormous and ever-increasing amount of data which can be used to improve decision making throughout the industries in which it is utilized. Improved decision making allows for greater revenue and reduced costs, saving companies time and money. As the IoT grows and increases in power, we may identify benefits we haven’t even begun to think of.