We never saw Captain Picard sit down at a computer. That vision takes place in the 24th century. However, that future may not be as far off as Star Trek portrays. We may not be sitting down in front of a computer as much either. First it was apps on cell phones and tablets. Next it’s sensors embedded all around us and eventually in us!
Amazon is taking one small step in the direction of the Internet of Things. With the aim to be the world’s largest online store, they are getting very good at making ordering easy. It started with the patented 1-click ordering system that streamlined the ordering process and changed the way e-commerce sites handled the shopping card. Then it was their subscription service “Prime”. Now it’s the “Dash”.
Amazon is positioning itself to be a prime player (no pun intended) in the coming Internet of things. A future predicted some time ago where not only all our devices would be interconnected, but also connected to physical objects through sensors. Those objects would be us too.
One of Amazon’s partners, Whirlpool, will soon release a washer that will automatically order more detergent from Amazon when you’re running low. There are a lot of companies working on sensors that will interconnect everything.
IBM has allocated $3 Billion to building a system that will collect data from all these devices. Amazon will also surely be collecting data all along the way, something which Amazon has proven to be a viable business model.
Furthermore, in regards to automation and integration, Uber is positioned to deliver more than just a taxi. They’re a logistics company. They started with a service where you can easily order a taxi, then in select cities you can order lunch and dinner. With that infrastructure, the possibilities are huge. That’s why they’re worth $40 Billion with only a couple Billion in revenue. That’s the value of potential.
Add to that the fact that planes can already fly themselves (but passengers don’t yet trust the machines and pilots fight to keep their jobs, so the humans are still flying) and self driving cars in development from Google and most major car companies.
As entrepreneurs, this is all very exciting and maybe terrifying, depending on your business. How can you take advantage of new technologies?
This site has some fun examples of what the Internet of Things may hold:
The Amazon echo is a serious step in the direction of Captain Picard’s deck