Guest Column | June 23, 2016

Why The ‘Internet Of Things' Is Driving Infrastructure Spending By Retailers

6 IoT Predictions For 2015

Featuring Todd Cripe and Velda Goodin

There is a lot of buzz today about the Internet of Things (IoT)—but is it a small wave to let pass, or is this a “big one” that RSPA members should be ready to ride out?  This technology trend touches many parts of the retail IT market and is expected to be a bigger part of retail IT budgets in 2016 and 2017.  In this article, Todd Cripe of Best of Breed Solutions and Velda Goodin of ScanSource explore what’s driving these expenditures and how RSPA members can benefit from these trends.

What is the definition of the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT)?

TC: IoT or IoE (Internet of Everything) can be defined as enabling physical objects in the real world to be visible in the virtual world.  The phrase Internet of Things was originally coined in 1999 by Auto-ID labs during an RFID project.  Devices that enable physical objects to become virtual include passive sensors that allow a one-way monologue or active sensors that offer a two-way dialogue. 

Is IoT all hype or is it soon to become table stakes for Retailers?

TC: IoT is absolutely being hyped today, just like NFC was being hyped a few years ago. Fortunately, IoT doesn’t have the same drama surrounding it that NFC did a few years ago where the payment and telecom stakeholders engaged in battle over secure element schema adoption. There are multiple real world usage cases for IoT that will potentially become table stakes that don’t require industry or vendor hype in order to be recognized by Retailers and VAR/Resellers as having significant value.