Last week Microsoft announced that it will commit $5 billion to its Internet of Things (IoT) programs. Over the next four years they will focus on IoT security, creating development tools and intelligent services, as well as edge networking.
With a roughly $1 billion investment per year many industry pundits believe there will be huge market growth around 2020. With the advent of 5G, it could speed a new golden age of connectivity with smart services and products popping up everywhere.
This move puts Microsoft in a solid position to offer solutions to most segments of the IoT Ecosystem, including their Cloud services, which the company has been developing and pushing over the last few years. The goal is to smooth the path for companies and organizations to start their IoT project regardless of the scope, expertise, budget or industry.
This is where the Intelligent Edge comes in, which Microsoft believe will have a pervasive effect on homes, cars, manufacturers, utilities and Smart Cities. Recent examples include Johnson Controls and their Smart Thermostat, Schneider Electric who uses Microsoft IoT to perform remote maintenance on solar energy installations in Nigeria, and the Alaskan road department which built smart roads that monitor road conditions with the company.
“With our IoT platform spanning cloud, OS and devices, we are uniquely positioned to simplify the IoT journey so any customer can create trusted, connected solutions that improve business and customer experiences, as well as the daily lives of people all over the world. The investment we’re announcing today will ensure we continue to meet all our customers’ needs both now and in the future,” said Julia White, CVP at Microsoft Azure.
For many, IoT is a term that’s past its prime. However, the idea of a more connected future is no longer on the horizon. With one of the largest companies in the world backing the development of a more easily obtained and defined IoT, even other Fortune 500 companies could soon be knocking on Microsoft’s door for partnerships and product development.
“We’ve been invested in IoT before the term was coined, when enterprises had these endpoints in their factories, buildings and other devices that were totally “dark.” Today, we’re planning to dedicate even more resources to research and innovation in IoT and what is ultimately evolving to be the new intelligent edge. With our IoT platform spanning cloud, OS and devices, we are uniquely positioned to simplify the IoT journey so that any customer – regardless of size, technical expertise, budget, industry or other factors – can create trusted, connected solutions that improve business and customer experiences, as well as the daily lives of people all over the world. The investment we’re announcing today will ensure we continue to meet all our customers’ needs both now and in the future.”
It’s surely exciting times, and one we’ll be keeping our eye now. How do you think Microsoft’s ramped up involvement will affect the IoT market and the smart IT sector as a whole?
To learn more about Microsoft’s plan for securing the IoT, attend the Trusted Computer Group’s Securing the Vulnerable IoT Workshop at IoT North America. http://iotna.com/schedule/securing-vulnerable-iot-workshop-trusted-computing-group/