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The Internet of Things' Big Software Challenge

By Jeffrey M. Kaplan
Feb 9, 2016 5:00 AM PT
internet-of-things-software-vendors

More than half of major new business processes and systems will incorporate some element of the Internet of Things by 2020, according to Gartner. That means that every piece of software that supports those business processes and systems must be redesigned to accommodate the requirements of the rapidly evolving IoT market.

Nearly every major independent software vendor is making moves to respond to the IoT challenge. Some are adding new functionality to their existing applications organically. Others are making acquisitions to enhance their established capabilities.

Callidus Connects to Customers

Callidus Software recently announced an IoT platform that connects customer devices to its Lead to Money application suite.

The platform will enable businesses to generate price quotes and send replacement parts based on data about the use of sensor-enabled equipment, the company said. It also will use the data to generate more targeted marketing campaigns, customer satisfaction surveys and sales commissions for IoT-enabled follow-up sales, as well as to initiate automated training programs.

It is working with a customer that is in the process of connecting 100,000 devices to the Callidus IoT-enabled Configure Price Quote solution, the company said.

SafeNet Controls Access

SafeNet, which was acquired recently by Gemalto, provides data security, software license management and monetization solutions. The company has been helping ISVs convert their applications from the perpetual license model of the past to the new world of subscription pricing for the cloud.

Now, SafeNet is working with a growing number of ISVs and other businesses that need new methods to apply software licenses to sensor-enhanced things to can control who has access to the data being transmitted and monetize the transactions they trigger.

PTC Buys In to IoT

PTC is among the most aggressive ISVs pursuing the unprecedented new market opportunities the IoT has created via acquisitions. The company, which has a long history of delivering product, service and application life cycle management software to the biggest companies in the world, is betting its future on IoT.

Over the past two years, PTC has made a series of acquisitions worth nearly $1 billion in rapidly growing IoT companies, including ThingWorx, an IoT platform provider; Axeda, which orchestrates the data collection from machine-to-machine and other IoT devices; ColdLight, which provides powerful data analytics for IoT environments; and Vuforia, a leader in the augmented reality arena.

Customers Need to Catch Up

Those are just three examples of ISVs that are rethinking how software will operate in the brave, new world of IoT.

The truth is that they and other ISVs pursuing similar IoT strategies are still ahead of their customers in responding to the new demands IoT will create. Most enterprises still are trying to understand the real implications of IoT and how they should incorporate it into their business strategies and operations.

Today's leading ISVs are matching their software redesign endeavors with comparable marketing efforts to educate their customers about today's IoT realities and future requirements.


Jeff Kaplan is the managing director of THINKstrategies, founder of the Cloud Computing Showplace, and host of the Cloud Innovators Summit executive forum series. He can be reached at jkaplan@thinkstrategies.com.


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