The Internet of Things (IoT) software market is poised to experience significant growth over the next several years.
Organizations of all sizes are increasingly using IoT to communicate real-time data from networks of devices and sensors.
At this point, there are billions of physical devices around the globe connected to the internet to collect and share data. As computer chips have come down in price and wireless networks have become nearly ubiquitous in populated areas, IoT adoption has increased significantly across industries. As a result, the world has become “smarter” when it comes to merging the digital world with physical objects.
Just about any physical object can be designed with IoT capabilities that communicate data to owners.
IoT software platforms make it possible to manage the networks of devices and sensors many organizations use to communicate real-time data around supply chains, manufacturing floors, security systems, and more.
Examples of IoT-based solutions include:
- Smart, app-controlled light bulbs
- Smart, self-adjusting thermostats
- Cargo temperature monitoring sensors
- Smartwatches and fitness bands
See below to learn all about the IoT software market, from the technology to companies in the space:
State of the IoT Software Market
In its report, “Internet of Things (IoT) Market, 2021–2028,” Fortune Business Insights estimates that the global IoT software market size was $309 billion in 2020.
The research firm expects the market to grow to more than $1.8 billion by the end of 2028 — a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.4%.
A 2020 article in The Economist, “How the world will change as computers spread into everyday objects,” points to various reasons for the large-scale trend we see in IoT adoption.
“As computers and connectivity become cheaper, it makes sense to bake them into more and more things that are not, in themselves, computers — from [diapers] and coffee machines to cows and factory robots,” the article says.
The world is becoming tuned into the usefulness of IoT-acquired data insights, as computers have made their way into multiple aspects of everyday life. The Economist article reports that one economic forecast predicts that by 2035, the world will be using around a trillion connected computers that are built into everything from food packaging to bridges and clothes.
Key Growth Drivers
The primary growth driver across the IoT software platform market is the increased adoption of IoT technology across a wide range of industries, institutions, and entities. Increased personal use of IoT, like smart wearables, is also at play here.
Fortune Business Insights points to COVID-19 responses in the health care industry as another key driver. For example, devices like linked thermometers and pulse-oximeters that patients use at home can be monitored remotely by medical staff, reducing the need for patients to be seen in person.
As the internet becomes more accessible globally — especially with the advent of 5G — we can expect to see IoT software adoption increase in tandem.
IoT software usage is particularly widespread in these sectors:
- Health care
- Supply chain
Features of IoT Software
IoT software helps organizations make sense of the tremendous amount of data being transmitted back and forth between IoT devices and sensors.
From a centralized desktop interface, users can view real-time data and apply insights about the data immediately. For example, if an IoT temperature sensor reports that the temperature inside a product warehouse is not ideal, a company can make adjustments (often remotely, with smart thermostat systems) and address any needed HVAC repairs.
IoT software typically includes centralized, cloud-accessible desktop interfaces, so organizations can easily share data insights and collect data from the field. Other typical features include:
- Data management tools
- Data analytics tools
- Device management
- Security features aimed at protecting IoT endpoints
- Application development support
- Alarms and alerts
Benefits of IoT Software
In a broad sense, IoT software makes it possible for users to gain the promised benefits of IoT.
Notable benefits of IoT software platforms include:
- Easing the process of collecting and using big data
- Real-time insights from sensors and other smart monitoring devices
- Centralizing and organizing incoming and outgoing data from networks of IoT devices and sensors
See more: Internet of Things (IoT) Security Market
IoT Software Use Cases
Indoor Environmental Quality Monitoring
Wireless IoT sensors report information about air quality and other indoor climate measurements to IoT software platforms, so building managers, service industry providers, and others can make adjustments as needed for health and comfort. This IoT application has been especially welcome in the post-COVID-19 era, ensuring that spaces are as hygienic as possible.
Energy Consumption Management
IoT software can help reduce energy costs by providing insights about data from IoT sensors. Some systems can even integrate with automated HVAC controls to maintain pre-determined energy settings. Users can opt for real-time notifications about significant changes in energy consumption, as well, which can help reduce repair time for electrical and plumbing issues.
Throughout the service industry, IoT software platforms are helping managers keep track of the consumables their guests are using. For example, a hotel can use IoT sensors to report data about the status of consumables in guests’ rooms — a figure that can vary significantly room to room. When supplies like hand soap or in-room coffee machine supplies run low, staff can target specific rooms, cutting down on wasted time checking rooms with plenty of supplies on hand.
Transportation engineers can use IoT sensor data from intersections, traffic lights, and public transportation to analyze traffic patterns, which informs the decisions they make about transportation projects and repairs. IoT sensors can count vehicles, monitor speed, and check road temperature conditions, leading to more efficient weather preparedness ahead of traffic surges during the winter.
Predictive Repairs and Maintenance
Wireless IoT sensors can record data about the status of appliances, factory machines, fleet vehicles, tools, and essentially any equipment companies need to keep in good working order. This data can help reduce repair costs and improve maintenance programs, leading to less downtime.
On a large geographic scale, regional IoT programs can help city and regional planners create cities and communities more efficiently. Sensors and mobile devices can feed data into IoT software platforms to help planners determine where to place traffic signals, make infrastructure improvements, and take a look at how residents actually use their community.
Supply Chain Improvements
When perishable goods, in particular, need to be transported, a great deal of money is at stake. If goods arrive damaged or spoiled, money is lost throughout supply chains, from producer to consumer. IoT sensor data about shipment conditions provides invaluable information related to how well goods are holding up within current shipping conditions, allowing transporters to make adjustments on the fly.
See more: 85 Top IoT Devices
IoT Software Providers
These 10 companies represent the majority of the IoT software market share globally:
- Amazon Web Services (AWS)
- Robert Bosch
- Cisco Systems
- Texas Instruments
IoT software platforms will continue to play an integral role in how companies apply IoT data insights. Without a reliable analytics engine at the center of operations, IoT data is unable to be used to help teams make informed decisions that impact everything from guest comfort to creating safer, more resident-friendly communities.
See more: Best IoT Platforms & Software