Internet of Things Is Most Certainly Coming to the Workplace and It Wants Data

Workplace data from IoT can prove invaluable aiding corporate planning for deployment of rooms and tech solutions. But who should own that data?

Josh Srago
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With the Internet of Things (IoT) gaining popularity and momentum by the day, the professional technology community is focused on preparing for the impact it will have on workplaces.

On May 9 in Santa Clara, Calif., commercial audio video industry trade organization InfoComm International hosted the inaugural IoT Insights event aimed at teaching the technology professionals about how the Internet of Things (IoT) is going to affect them, and help them as it continues gaining more traction in our everyday lives.

Speakers offered unique perspectives on how the IoT evolution is going to impact the way technology integrators and workplace end users, including IT professionals, do business.

Several of the presenters, including Michael Carter, VP of business development and marketing for the Clarient Group, Gary Hall, CTO-federal defense for Cisco, and Daniel Jackson, manager of research and development for Crestron, discussed the potential of incorporating IoT into the managed services future for integration firms.

Photos: More on IoT in the Industry

By having more of the devices located on the network and capable of communicating equipment status, issues, or for troubleshooting, integrators are able to easily incorporate these into their service plans.

IoT, though, goes far beyond just monitoring and troubleshooting. As I’ve written, the Internet of Things is providing data that can be incorporated to aid in corporate planning for deployment of rooms incorporating technology as well as system design. By knowing what equipment is being used and which rooms are most frequently occupied, a company can determine what they need to add more of to support its staff as it expands or to make it operate more efficiently.

Related: How the Internet of Things Will Help Your Company in the Future

All of this planning and the ability to provide service is about access to data.

AV professionals need an accurate reporting tool that’s providing the information as to what is being used, how it’s being used, and when it starts to have problems so that action can be taken and informed decisions can be made by the client or on their behalf.

Nearly every presenter at IoT Insights talked about the need to own that data. Personally, I’m not so sure that’s the best advice for technology integrators. Telling someone to own the data implies that it’s theirs to hold and disseminate, as required, to any party that wants to put that information to use.

This also means that they are responsible for protecting that data from hacking. As many integrators are still working their way through providing network technology and truly understanding IT networks, it seems like a large task to suddenly expect them to be able to provide their own security measures for the data they are now storing.

It was unanimous that IoT is a future development that will yield leaps and bounds on how AV systems are deployed, utilized, and serviced moving forward. It is what will allow for the development of smart buildings and, on a grander scale, smart cities. The sensors that allow all of our things to communicate are being incorporated into our world at an alarming pace with an estimate of up to 50 billion devices on networks by 2020.

IoT will have a place in the future of AV and understanding how to gather and interpret the information these sensors detect and share will allow for more educated clients, integrators, consultants and manufacturers as to how AV systems we provide are being utilized.

For further information, or to get into the weeds of IoT yourself, make sure you sign up for the IoT Insights event at InfoComm 2016 in Las Vegas on Super Tuesday, June 7. I hope to see you there.

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