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  1. Blog
  2. Article

Amrisha Prashar
on 5 January 2017

Big movements took place in the space of IoT last year from voice-controlled home assistants to block chain solutions. As we enter 2017, Maarten Ectors has put together predictions across the IoT ecosystem that will shape the way industries interact with the online world.

We saw big movements in the space of IoT last year with the rise of home voice-controlled assistants, ethereum and block chain solutions as mainstream disrupters through to the rise of more personalised app-store toys!

As we enter 2017 we’re predicting what could be in-store across the IoT ecosystem from devices, analytics, networks and security that will shape the way industries interact with the online world.

Big Data and Machine Learning

  • Deep Learning Generative Adversarial Nets (GAN) and similar next big thing approaches will find its way into tools and become mainstream in Tensorflow and others
  • OpenAI and other open source platforms will start out-innovating closed platforms or one company only solutions. Open source large community will win from big budgets closed sourced
  • Voice and gesture recognition but also emotion recognition will start pushing back the keyboard and mouse as the default way to interact with devices. Hype in 2017. Products at scale in 2018
  • Security cameras will go from raw video stream towards meta data producers, i.e. unknown person detected in the premise or Maarten entered at 8:57:13 through the main entrance and went to the office on the 5th floor

Internet of Things (across the board)

  • Hype meets reality. First production-ready mid-sized volume products become a success. 2018 will see the real volume though
  • Lots of IoT startups will run into financial troubles or get acquired by companies that are late in the game or played their cards wrong
  • Ubuntu will power an Arduino designed board. Not on the micro-controller of course but micro-controller + regular Linux on one board or FPGA + regular Linux on one board will become the next big thing
  • Open source hardware with app stores will pop up in multiple markets and be the most disruptive any regular hardware product vendor has ever seen

Other technologies

  • After “the DAO” false start, smart contracts will come back with a vengeance. 2017 will be the year smart contracts will meet the enterprise for the first time
  • Augmented reality will jump from the mobile [Pokemon Go] to enterprise devices. First Google Glass for enterprise type of products that don’t make you a Glasshole but a Connected Worker will get early traction
  • Autonomous drone and robot competitions will be organised everywhere. It will be a great year for 10 year olds and their parents “buying it for the kids”…
  • 10 cities will allow self-driven taxi services and 100,000 people will experience a robot driving them


  • The software-defined product revolution is starting. You don’t buy a single purpose product. You buy an open platform product. Think Amazon Echo + Apps
  • Advertisement-based models will reach saturation. This will be reflected in the stock price of only advertisement companies. As-a-Service, App Stores, and alternative models will start substituting them
  • IoT meets fun in 2017. Entertainment will substitute health as the main reason for buying connected devices
  • Old generation of connected devices and broadband modems will need urgent updates because of security problems. Mirai offspring will result in the Anti-Virus for Things market booming. Telcos will be the key victim of having bought millions of insecure broadband modems. Expect Mirai offspring to become a lot worse before it becomes better. Governments will oblige telcos to update or substitute modems


  • Open source telecom hardware with new revenue generating app stores will be the thing of MWC. The telecom infra project will embrace and accelerate it. Software defined radio will go mainstream
  • Network White Boxes = FPGA + App Store. Just download an app and you will redefine your network box to do whatever you want it to be, i.e. a router, firewall, deep packet inspector, loadbalancer or all of the above
  • NFV is dead, long live Cloud-native or Cloudified Network Functions
  • The only telecom problem that matters = new revenues


  • Open source app-enabled programmable logic controllers or ALCs will go from prototype to real product and will disrupt the low-end automation market
  • IoT gateways will disrupt distributed control systems market
  • Industrial disruption will be the hype term. Nothing new for media and telecom companies but lots of industrial players thought that they were save from new disruptive entrants because of “industrial-grade” thinking. Very similar to only telcos can make a “telco-grade” global network. Now they can’t stop wondering how Google has outrun them

Financial Services

  • Fintech will see first big challenger successes. Next-generation mobile retail banking will find customers
  • Fast block chain alternatives will start disrupting traditional sectors of banking
  • Car insurance stocks will start falling because of self-driven cars being rented in the future, not owned


  • Next-shoring, produced in your neighbourhood by automated robot factories according to your personal preferences will see boom in high-end markets with premium personal shoes coming to a capital city close to you.
    Talk and chat to order will be the cool thing to do
  • Online-first brands will start disrupting long known brands. The millennials who grew up with Google, Snapchat, Tesla, Netflix, Uber, AirBnB and many others will continue their “brand unloyalty” into “known brands”
  • Coca Cola, H&S, Lego, and others will find that their brand is becoming less valuable every day. Only more innovation will fix this, not more marketing

And…last month we held a webinar on IoT predictions with Dominique Guinard (CTO & Co-founder EVRYTHNG), Ian Skerrett (VP Marketing, Eclipse Foundation) and Maarten Ectors (Canonical.) If you missed it, you can watch it here!

Original source of the blog can be found here.

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