We Share Because We Care: Data Ecosystems

In the conservative culture of most manufacturing-based businesses, competitive advantage is usually perceived to lie in ownership, secrecy, control, and sometimes adversarial relationships with suppliers and partners. It goes without saying that such a culture does not blend well with the notions of openness, transparency, and trust.

Dis-Integration: Platform Business Models

To date, most of the successful platform businesses are “consumer” or “user” focused. Fewer B2B markets have embraced this type of business model. We predict this will soon change. Freight logistics, genetic sequencing, order management, and asset management are examples of new beachheads for platform models in the B2B sector.

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Future Proof: Fathym’s Low Code Data Solution

Fathym is uniquely positioned at the intersection of these three evolutions: batched, wireless, and embedded. None of their competitors has been able to bend their story away from the supply-side technical development cultures, and this prevents them from clearly seeing this future. Fathym’s value is rooted in helping businesses evolve,…

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The Physical Gets Metaphysical

As more and more companies delve into developing smart systems, they are quickly finding that competitive differentiation shifts away from unique, vertically focused product features. The new focus will be on how the product is actually used—how it fosters interactions between and among users in a networked context.

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Creative Software Evolution Part 2: Taking the Plunge

Note to OEMs venturing into software: Those millions of lines of code are a whole different animal. They’re not a physical good like the things you know and build. They’re also not easy to create, price, sell, or support, and you’d better not confuse them with your existing business.

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Creative Software Evolution Part 1: The Trillion-Dollar Risk

If you’re trying to figure out how big the impact of Smart Systems and the Internet of Things could be, just start adding up the annual product revenues of the largest manufacturers on earth. By the time you sum the top dozen diversified companies, you’re over a trillion dollars. That’s…


When we read Internet of Things commentary by our colleagues in the consulting profession, we’re often perplexed by the two-by-two charts they have showing company activity. The upper right-hand corner of the upper right-hand box—the “magic quadrant”—is usually empty, and the favored firms are clustered in the upper right-hand corner…

The Future of High Performance Networks
The Future of High-Performance Networks

We’ve been speaking professionally about pervasive computing and the Internet of Things since the late 1990s when most people in business had no idea what we were talking about. Now everybody knows what we’re talking about, and many companies are trying to take part in it, but “giving the world…

Taming the Complexity of Smart Building Systems

Harbor Research has long examined the evolution of Smart Systems in intelligent buildings. During all our time observing the space, siloed, vendor-specific solutions have always been the norm in building automation, leading to unnecessary inefficiencies for customers. In order for OEMs, service providers, and building managers to harness equipment data…

Smart Cities Blog
Smart Cities: Dream or Privacy Nightmare?

Smart City programs cannot be defined by a single “top down” approach or central organizing schema that sets preprogrammed limits. They will be defined by individual citizens, who are motivated to collaborate with each other to create new use cases and applications that solve specific local problems. Smart cities will…

Slip Sliding Away to the Edge

The IoT is a distributed computing challenge. Smart Systems and IoT deployments are by their very nature distributed systems. We hear lots of talk about the “cloud” as it relates to the IoT to the point that in many cases it seems like the “cloud” is being presented as the…

A Brave New Distributed Energy Future

We have portrayed a vision of smart energy driven by real-time, interactive communication networks that provide services and are adopted in a manner very similar to the evolution of the web and the Internet. In this vision, customers and consumers would be able to see variable pricing changes in real…

Back to the Future – Smart Systems and IoT Evolution Challenges

Many IT equipment suppliers, silicon suppliers, enterprise software players and wireless carriers have re-elevated their interest in the Smart Systems and Internet of Things arena because of the arrival of 5G wireless technologies.  Many of these players are “old hands” having focused on connected opportunities for some time and many…

Smart Home Blog
The Key to Unlocking Smart Home Ecosystems

The “Smart Home” has always had the potential to unleash unprecedented value for comfort and convenience as well as safety and security.  The sheer volume of manufacturers, service providers and tech companies addressing the residential arena is a testament to its potential. However, today’s smart home market remains fragmented with…

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