If you are an avid follower of Quardev Thoughts, you will have no doubt heard of the Internet of Things (IoT). In essence, it’s a network created by connecting everyday electronics, refrigerators, thermostats, etc., to the internet. The IoT has been ever-expanding over the past couple of years and will undoubtedly continue to grow as more convenient products fly off the shelves. As a result of IoT, an additional network and system currently developing is the Internet of Behaviors (IoB). Just as the IoT is a network of physical products sharing data and being remotely controlled, in the future, IoB will analyze behaviors through the lens of human psychology and control marketing and IoT gadgets to influence consumer actions or optimize the performance of hardware.
A recent Forbes article discussing the IoB came to the astute conclusion that “The IoT revolution was driven by hardware – connected devices that exchange data over the internet – but software that integrates this data will give rise to the IoB.” For example, your smart-thermostat could communicate with your smartwatch, adjusting the indoor temperature to optimize energy and keep you comfortable according to your vitals. This is just one example of how the IoB could be seriously impactful, but there’s one massive problem: data.
Inherently, IoB systems would have to synthesize multiple datasets from many different hardware sources to make suggestions to marketers and IoT networks. However, teams that work on IoT systems are separated, both between companies and within siloed organizations. It’s incredibly difficult, right now, for a developer to synthesize all of this data and use it all together. As we move into the future, agile, intermixed teams will be vital in developing IoB networks. Currently, companies like Apple are most poised to employ such techniques.
Apple, for example, has a sizable immersive ecosystem of products that draw in consumers. They could use this to their benefit and develop robust IoB systems that employ all of their products working in unison. Other, smaller companies may need to work together to build such an ecosystem. For example, a smart-lighting company could work with a phone company to suggest adjusting your lights-out time if you must wake up early the following day.
The key to building IoB systems will be collaboration and data. Corporations will need to adjust their teams to be less siloed and more agile, allowing for more holistic integration. Additionally, IoB systems will likely be the future of both software and marketing. If data is shared more readily, it will undoubtedly result in more accurate marketing, using an individual’s day-to-day behavior. However, as with any new technology, there are privacy and ethical concerns that have yet to be considered. Securing data seems to be a challenge currently, so clearly, a different system is needed if you would like to feel safe indulging in these futuristic luxuries.