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Platform Assessment
and Analysis Summary

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After displaying signs of relative indifference for so many years, traditional IT systems, enterprise software, telecom and network equipment players have finally awakened over the last few years.  Meanwhile, the world of Smart Systems and Services has continued to evolve, particularly in the emergent software player communities serving this opportunity.  In this new cycle, physical assets and devices are being connected and enabled with sensors on a daily basis.  Recognizing this scenario, technology suppliers around the world are now devoting major resources to addressing the opportunities associated with Smart Systems, but are, for the most part, failing to bring any new fundamental innovations to market.

For most IT and telco equipment vendors, selling existing servers, switches, PCs, storage devices, and enterprise applications will be a recipe for shrinking revenues, given the impacts new architectures are having on these markets and applications. But demand for these technologies will not disappear. A few vendors that focus on being the “consolidators” of these shrinking but still large product markets will be able to survive.

The functional requirements for new digital, Smart Systems and IoT platforms increases with the complexity of the use cases as well as the scope of assets to be targeted; the IoT is not a simple environment to navigate.  High value use cases enabling widespread visibility and collaboration can be achieved using today’s technology however, significant time and money is required to integrate and manage the software and diverse development tools from numerous vendors.


Who will be the winners and who will lose as the Smart Systems Platform opportunity develops?  In the complex world of sensors, machines and software technologies, there is no vendor that has the clear leadership position.  While the “Internet of Things” platform opportunity represents a market of vast potential, technology developers must be aware of the current technical and competitive dynamics if they are to successfully navigate the market. How well will various supplier groups align with the Smart Systems opportunity as it develops?

This growth opportunity requires new technology innovations and new relationships between and among large established players and small emerging specialists. All participants will need to carefully pick the horizontal technologies that they want to master and/or the verticals that they want to dominate and give up the others. Sadly, this does not appear to be the current state of affairs in the collective digital, Smart Systems and IoT arena, particularly for platform development. 

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