What are the top IoT companies

Internet of Things (IoT)

The IoT seems to be a success story. This is shown by the results of the current IoT study, the CIO and COMPUTERWOCHE together with the partners A1 Digital Deutschland, Telefónica Germany, Concept Reply, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, Device Insight, NTT Security (Germany), Q-Loud, TÜV SÜD Sec- IT and OpenText have realized. To this end, 444 decision-makers from the DACH region were asked about their views, plans and projects relating to the Internet of Things. Important parameters such as the number of IoT projects, the success rate or investments only know one direction: up.

A good half of the companies (51 percent) have already implemented IoT projects, mostly across locations and / or countries. Last year the value here was 39 percent. And there is no longer a company without IoT activities. The details: 19 percent of the companies have already implemented their first IoT projects (previous year: 20 percent), in 27 percent of the companies there are already some or very many IoT use cases (previous year: 21 percent). A broad roll-out is planned or already implemented in three percent of the companies. A fifth of the companies each want to start their first IoT projects in the short or medium term or are currently developing an IoT strategy.

The number of projects is increasing

The number of IoT projects is also growing steadily. 30 percent of the companies have implemented between six and 20 projects, 12 percent between 10 and 24 use cases, and six percent between 25 and 49 use cases. As in previous years, the pioneers in IoT applications are still large companies. However, the gap to small and medium-sized companies continues to narrow.

Click here for the study "Internet of Things 2019/2020"

The relevance values ​​for the IoT have only increased slightly. Currently, 56 percent of companies (2018: 51 percent) rate the relevance of the IoT as very high or high, 19 percent as rather low to very low (2018: 20 percent). The value increases with the size of the IT budget. In only 40 percent of companies with an IT budget of less than one million euros, the IoT is currently important to very important. In the case of companies with an IT budget of between one and ten million, this is the case for 61 percent of companies; for large companies with more than ten million euros, the IoT is very relevant in 86 percent (previous year 61 percent). In the next few years, the IoT will gain in importance compared to today (71 percent very high to high); However, the value is only two percent higher than in the last study (69 percent).

High success rate: added value achieved faster

93 percent of the companies (previous year: 94 percent) are very satisfied or somewhat satisfied with the results of their previous IoT projects. Only seven percent are either not satisfied or not satisfied. There is a slight shift here compared to the previous year. While 69 percent of the companies were very satisfied or satisfied last year, this year it is "only" 63 percent. This may also be due to a fundamentally higher expectation.

After all, the success rate of the IoT projects has increased compared to the previous year. While last year 15 percent of the companies could not find any added value such as higher productivity or lower costs, this year it is only eight percent. One percent of IoT projects failed (2018: two percent).

Interesting: The added value of the IoT projects was a little faster on average compared to last year. As in the previous year, the value for immediate added value is nine percent. What is striking here is the outlier among large companies with an IT budget of more than ten million euros, where almost a quarter (24 percent) benefited immediately from their IoT project. In 19 percent of the companies, the added value was achieved after four to eight weeks (previous year: 15 percent), in 35 percent after three months (previous year: 26 percent).

This indicates that companies are working more purposefully on the subject of IoT and have learned from their previous experience. Because when defining use cases, designing and implementing their IoT solutions, they were on average three months faster than in the previous year (15 instead of 18 months). The most important criterion for the success of IoT projects is still higher productivity (55 percent), followed by cost reductions (46 percent) and increasing sales (41 percent).

Many application scenarios - especially in industry

The IoT shows many faces in companies. The areas of application of the IoT are widely spread in a wide variety of areas. Compared to last year's study, however, the order of the most important categories has changed slightly. 40 percent of the companies wanted to improve their quality control with their previous IoT projects. This category thus replaces the long-standing front runner connected production (Industry 4.0), which achieved 37 percent, followed by Smart Connected Products and Sales (sales management) with 35 percent each. Further categories are logistics, building management and, with predictive maintenance, another topic from the field of Industry 4.0.

The most important goals of Industry 4.0 are low-cost production (34 percent) and increased productivity (30 percent). Large companies in particular (40 percent) want to reduce their production costs with the help of the IoT. With a slight gap (20 percent each), predictive maintenance and faster set-up times follow as motives for the use of IoT in production. In addition, the companies hope to use the IoT to establish new production processes such as batch size 1 and to monitor and reduce their energy costs.

The IT department is primarily responsible for the success of the IoT projects. As in the previous year, responsibility for the planning and implementation of IoT projects in most companies is concentrated in IT. The IT manager and the CIO together make up 50 percent (IT manager 28 percent, CIO 22 percent). In only eleven percent of companies, the managing director has his hat on when it comes to IoT. This is especially true for small businesses. They are followed by the Technology Board (seven percent), the CDO and the Head of Development & Research with five percent each. Only five percent of the companies have a special IoT team for developing, planning and implementing IoT activities.

AI and Robotics: New Fields for Investment

However, the willingness to invest is falling. In 46 percent of companies, IoT projects result in very large or large amounts of additional investments. The values ​​are thus clearly below the previous year's level. Last year, 59 percent of companies said that their investments would increase very sharply or sharply. Companies with an IT budget of more than ten million euros spend a particularly large amount of money (32 percent rising sharply; last year 23 percent).

The changing of the guard in the investment fields is also astonishing. In the last two years, the focus of the expenditure was in each case on cloud services, security and network technologies. Now, surprisingly, a trio of "newer" technologies are ahead with 26 percent each: blockchain, AI and robotics. Only a fifth of companies want to invest in security technologies, although privacy and security concerns are the most important argument against broad-based IoT activities. Other important investment areas are cloud computing, network technologies, mobility, IoT platforms and analytics.

The companies need additional resources primarily for the selection and implementation of IoT platforms and for IoT project management. These two topics are thus replacing the long-standing leader in software development, whose value has fallen from 40 to 22 percent and has almost halved. Companies also have to step up with security / safety concepts, hardware development and business case advice. Only five percent of companies do not need any additional IoT resources.

Partner in the boat

In order to master the IoT challenges, most companies work with external partners. Almost two thirds of the companies (65 percent) develop their IoT solution together with an external partner; In 2018 it was 59 percent. The proportion of medium-sized companies with between 500 and 999 employees (72 percent) is above average. 16 percent have their IoT solution developed completely externally (previous year: 17 percent), five percent cooperate with other companies from their own industry (previous year: eight percent).

The proportion of companies that develop their own IoT solution has fallen from 44 percent to 41 percent. There are no differences in company sizes, but there are differences in IT budgets. 52 percent of the companies with an annual IT budget of more than ten million euros take the design and implementation of their IoT solutions into their own hands.

When choosing an IoT provider, companies place great value on a good price-performance ratio, trust in the provider and technological know-how. Process know-how, industry competence (in the previous year still criterion number 2), innovative strength and scalability also play an important role. Further criteria when choosing an IoT partner are a transparent price structure, good cooperation on another IT / ICT project and a permanent contact person. The least important thing for companies (ten percent) is that the partner is headquartered in the European Union.

The most important sources of information when choosing a partner are direct personal advice from IoT service providers (52 percent), product videos (46 percent) and the website of the IoT service provider (44 percent).

Study profile

Editor: COMPUTERWOCHE, CIO, TecChannel and ChannelPartner

Study partner:

Platinum partner: A1 digital

Gold partner: Telefónica

Silver partner: Alcatel Lucent, Concept Reply, Device Insight, NTT Security, Q-loud, TÜV Süd

Bronze partner: opentext

Population: Top (IT) responsible for companies in the D-A-CH region: strategic (IT) decision-makers in the C-level area and in the departments (LoBs), IT decision-makers and IT specialists from the IT area

Participant generation: Sampling in the IT decision maker database of IDG Business Media; personal e-mail invitations to the survey

Total sample: 444 completed and qualified interviews

Investigation period: September 12 to September 16, 2019

Method: Online survey (CAWI)

Questionnaire development: IDG Research Services in coordination with the study partners

Execution: IDG Research Services

Technological partner: Questback GmbH, Cologne

Survey software: EFS Survey Winter 2018

Click here for the study "Internet of Things 2019/2020"