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94 percent of businesses will use IoT by the end of 2021 according to a Microsoft report

What you need to know

  • Microsoft released a new IoT Signals report which breaks down IoT stats and trends.
  • The report claims that 94 percent of businesses will use IoT by the end of 2021.
  • The report states that 47 percent of surveyed companies that have adopted IoT believe there aren't enough skilled workers in IoT.

Microsoft released an IoT Signals report (opens in new tab) that shows trends and statistics surrounding the Internet of Things (IoT). The report shows that IoT is extremely common in the core industries of manufacturing retail/wholesale, transportation, government, and healthcare. The report claims that 94 percent of businesses will use IoT by the end of 2020.

IoT growth shows no signs of slowing: adoption is projected to increase by 9 points over the next two years, meaning 94% of businesses will be using IoT by the end of 2021."

Microsoft commissioned Hypothesis Group to perform the research. The data comes a "20-minute online survey [that] was conducted with over 3,000 decision makers at enterprise companies across the US, UK, Germany, France, China, and Japan who were currently involved in IoT."

The report lays out adoption across major industries, with retail/wholesale (90 percent) and manufacturing (87 percent) leading the way. It also states that growth doesn't show any signs of slowing down and that by the end of 2021, 94 percent of businesses will use IoT.

The report also shows that nearly all companies are concerned with the security of IoT. 97 percent of companies surveyed are "concerned about security when implementing IoT." It's noteworthy that despite this concern, the report states that security concerns do not hinder adoption.

Despite high adoption rates, the report states that 47 percent of companies that have adopted IoT believe that there are not enough available skilled workers in IoT.

The full report sheds quite a bit of light on the Internet of Things, including both the challenges it faces and the primary areas which it is successful.

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Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

1 Comment
  • Part of my job include Lean Six Sigma facilitation and training. Part of the IoT struggle is nestled in two aspects that I routinely observe in this capacity. First, leadership, at all levels, has a tendency to seek expedient solutions to problems--firefight--rather than make the investment of time and human capital to figure out the best way to do something. This can either lead to immature rollout of something like IoT (because it's the new hotness) that is planned, chosen and deployed badly, or it can lead to a resistance to employing IoT because it's not well understood how or if it can help the problem. As indicated by the article, a huge challenge is seeing how ANY innovation solves a problem. I contend daily with "good idea fairies". They are the worst. They frequently bend the ear of a leader who then sees it as the Next Big Thing, subsequently directing use of limited resources for dubious ROI. It's all about data driven decisions. Do KPIs point to a performance gap in your processes, particularly where customers are telling you a critical x (CtX) is not being met? In that case, if it turns out that IoT is a viable countermeasure, what form should that IoT solution take? You don't "sell" leadership on IoT. You SHOW leadership how an IoT implementation solves a problem, improves performance, meets the Voice of the Customer (VOC). Personally, I'm a huge fan of properly staged IoT. What I HATE is IoT (or any innovation) for its own sake, especially when it isn't a real solution to my issue. I like to refer to the whole digital assistant issue. I basically hate all of them but Cortana. The my voice, if you will. And I already have a multitude of connected devices that have eyes, ears and voices. The exact WRONG answer is to tell me I have to buy MORE devices to access my data, my entertainment or any of my other IoT devices (pronounced 'home automation'). As a customer, I demand an IoT standard by which I can use any combination of IoT devices in conjunction with any software, any network, any digital assistant. I'm not surprised security is of utmost concern. This is especially true in the healthcare arena, where HIPAA rules. When always-connected implants could be hacked for health or biometric info or hijacked altogether, it's a legitimate potential weakness.