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Supply Chain Management Fuels IoT Investment Boom

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A new study is predicting that Internet of Things (IoT) technologies will see a major boost in investment over the next five years, mostly due to projects in inventory and supply chain management.

The data, from consulting and advisory firm Forrester Research’s report, “Internet-Of-Things Spending Forecast, 2017 To 2023 (Global),” found that companies will spend $434.9 billion annually to design, plan, build, and run IoT solutions by 2023, an increase from $186.1 billion in 2017.

The report divided those numbers into six sectors — including IoT-specific security software, platform software, service provider connectivity, application software, hardware, and professional services — and discovered that the largest use for IoT applications will be in inventory and supply chain management. The sector is expected to grow at 20.2 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR), hitting $113.5 billion by 2023 — making up more than a quarter of the total investment for that year.

Other sectors for major IoT growth are expected to include smart products, which are set to reach $50.3 billion by 2023; smart buildings, predicted to reach $49.6 billion by 2023; and fleet management, which should hit $10.4 billion by 2023.

This is just the latest report to predict huge growth in IoT. In July, a study from Juniper Research estimated that the IoT cybersecurity solutions market will hit $6 billion globally by 2023, with spending by product and service providers and end customers rising close to 300 percent from now until 2023.

“The interconnected nature of the IoT means that even innocuous devices like the connected fridge can become a threat. Vendors see that risk as low, while little has been done from a regulatory perspective to protect consumers,” said research author Steffen Sorrell.

And according to data from the PYMNTS IoT Tracker, IoT growth is not only likely to continue, but likely to continue to pick up. In fact, there will be an estimated 18 billion IoT-connected devices on the market by the end of 2018, with retail applications from groceries to yoga pants, to beer and beyond.

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