Consumer v. Enterprise IoT with CallPass
On this week’s episode of Real World IoT Podcast, host Ken Briodagh discusses the differences between the consumer and enterprise IoT markets and the impacts of “gold rush mentality” with President of the CallPass companies, Jason Ashton. CallPass consists of CallPass Tech and CallPass M2M Solutions Inc, both of which specialize in asset tracking through GPS technology, working directly with consumers and enterprises alike.
Defining the Difference
Over the past few years, it seems that many suppliers and vendors, along with the media, have been treating consumer and industrial IoT the same way. However, as Ken and Jason discuss, it is important to understand these markets as separate entities. New technologies will always be desired by the consumer, but it is up to developers to look for new utilizations of IoT to improve products and connectivity as a service on a greater scale. If IoT is only developed for the cash in the consumer’s pocket, the market will quickly become oversaturated with identical devices of solitary functions, failing to connect, streamline, or revolutionize the technological world.
The Problem with Rushing In
Starting several years ago, “IoT” and other buzzwords, like “Smart Home Technology,” caused great excitement within the industrial market. This lead to developers and device manufacturers making quick business decisions for an early profit, creating what Jason calls a “gold rush.” In this same vein, as these new technologies were being released, early adopting consumers purchased the first products to market. While this resulted in high revenue in the beginning, the problem was clear: the hasty tech development and partnerships were yielding in subpar IoT products which were ultimately a disappointment to consumers, leading to a decrease in sales. This soon lead to a repeating cycle of new ideas, underdeveloped tech, and underwhelming products. Though profitable, this approach is not sustainable nor progressive in the advancement of IoT technology.
Scaling for the Long Run
Jason offers advice to growing companies trying to scale their business. First, he says to make sure you are going down a path that is designed for longevity. Though the gold rush is tempting, it never pays off. Second, Jason believes you need to have a reliable telecom provider. Sensor communication is the next big evolution in the business to business IoT market, and companies need the communication and reliability to get information back. In his words: “If you don’t have it you’re not going to be dead in the water, but you’re really going to struggle to try to swim up the stream.” Lastly, Jason stresses the necessity of the partnership ecosystem in this industry. He says “look inward, out” and make sure your partners can scale with you. Though it may feel more cost-effective to do everything in-house, Jason feels that anyone that tries to be a stand-alone company ends up either making a product that no one really wants or simply failing altogether. In the IoT, there is so much complexity and so many moving parts, all of the vendors, suppliers, and solution manager companies have to learn to work together with at least some partners to provide full solutions to the end-users and enterprise-level people.