Comment by Peter Roberts
Australians have a habit of clutching onto any small breakthrough or new development and labeling our country a global leader or somesuch in a particular field.
One of the latest areas where we are supposed to lead is in the industrial internet of things, the linking together of masses of individual sensors across a supply chain (among other things).
The latest Aussie first euphoria comes from reports of the latest IDC Worldwide Semi-annual Internet of Things Spending Guide.
According to the guide, Asia-Pacific (excluding Japan) is projected to be the global leader in IoT spending in 2019, accounting for approximately 36.9 percent of worldwide spending.
Hence Australia as leader headlines abound.
This is likely true of the region, given the dynamism and speed of reaction of Asian business in general and Chinese business in particular. There are few trends China does not embrace and then lead.
But Australia represents only a few per cent of Asia Pacific and cannot make up more than a few per cent of IoT deployment.
Yes there are plenty of examples of Australian companies deploying IoT in heir plants and across supply chains, but anecdotal evidence is weak and it is not backed up by overall Australian figures for deployment.
Ultimately, successful IoT initiatives will rely heavily on interconnection, requiring digital infrastructures that can physically link dispersed sensors.
It is here that Ausralia is looking less like a leader..
Our NBN has been grudgingly accepted by the public – what choice do we have – but it is painfully slow for many and patchy compared to global leaders such as Korea.
Built with the idea that downloading movies is its main use, it will ultimately be proven to be the wrong technology mix, and in need of replacement to service a vibrant industrial future.
I have friends who presently get two Mbps download – how can this possibly link devices and machines so they can exchange information in real time?
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