IBM invests £2 billion in Internet of Things unit

Tech giant is building a new cloud-based open platform
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IBM has today announced that it will invest more than £2 billion ($3 billion) over the next four years to establish a new Internet of Things (IoT) unit.

The cloud-based open platform is being built to help clients and ecosystem partners integrate real-time IoT/enterprise data and insights.

IBM has already worked on a Smarter Planet and Smarter Cities plan, which was based on the practical applications of IoT in the enterprise and led to the development of offerings to reduce crime, minimise risk for firefighters and monitor water conditions. 

IBM estimates that 90 percent of all data generated by devices like smartphones, tablets, connected vehicles and appliances is never analysed or acted upon. As much as 60 per cent of this data "begins to lose value within milliseconds of being generated". To address this challenge, IBM is announcing it will offer:

IBM IoT Cloud Open Platform for Industries: This is a new analytics service delivering vertical industry IoT solutions for clients on the IBM Cloud. For example, IBM will introduce a cloud-based service that helps insurance companies extract insight from connected vehicles. 

IBM Bluemix IoT Zone: The Bluemix platform-as-a-service will allow integration of IoT data into cloud-based development and deployment of IoT apps.

IBM IoT Ecosystem: Expansion of its ecosystem of IoT partners – from silicon and device manufacturers to industry-oriented solution providers (such as AT&T, ARM, Semtech and The Weather Company).

“Our knowledge of the world grows with every connected sensor and device, but too often we are not acting on it, even when we know we can ensure a better result,” said Bob Picciano, senior vice president at IBM Analytics.

“IBM will enable clients and industry partners apply IoT data to build solutions based on an open platform. This is a major focus of investment for IBM because it’s a rich and broad-based opportunity where innovation matters.”

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