More than 40 percent of organisations, representative of all major global markets, expect the Internet of Things (IoT) to transform their business or offer significant new revenue or cost-savings opportunities in the short term (over the next three years), rising to 60 percent in the long term (more than five years).
But according to a recent survey by Gartner, covering 463 IT and business leaders from all corners of the planet with knowledge of their organisation's IoT strategy, most organisations have still not established clear business or technical leadership for their IoT efforts.
"The survey confirmed that the IoT is very immature, and many organisations have only just started experimenting with it," says Nick Jones, vice president and distinguished analyst, Gartner.
"Only a small minority have deployed solutions in a production environment.
“However, the falling costs of networking and processing mean that there are few economic inhibitors to adding sensing and communications to products costing as little as a few tens of dollars.
“The real challenge of the IoT is less in making products 'smart' and more in understanding the business opportunities enabled by smart products and new ecosystems."
Jones says a useful indicator of the degree to which organisations are prepared for the IoT is whether they've identified technical and business leadership for their IoT efforts.
The survey found that less than one-quarter of survey respondents has established clear business leadership for the IoT, either in the form of a single organisational unit owning the issue or multiple business units taking ownership of separate IoT efforts.
"Organisations need executives and staff to understand the potential of the IoT if they're going to invest in it," adds Steve Kleynhans, research vice president, Gartner.
"While a single leader for the IoT is not essential, leadership and vision are important, even in the form of several leaders from different business units.