Technology giant IBM today said it will invest USD 3 billion (about Rs 18,770 crore) over the next four years to establish a new Internet of Things (IoT) unit to help its enterprise customers make better business decisions.
IoT helps in harnessing relevant information from massive amounts of data collected by smartphones, tablets, connected vehicles and appliances. This insight helps companies manage their businesses in a better and efficient manner. IBM is building a cloud-based open platform designed to help clients and ecosystem partners build IoT solutions, the company said in a statement.
The new unit will be led by Pat Toole as General Manager, it added. IBM is gradually shifting its focus from its traditional hardware and consulting business to cloud. It is targeting USD 40 billion in annual revenue from cloud, big data, security and other growth areas by 2018.
The US-based firm is already working in areas like smart cities offering solutions, ranging from water management to retail and customer loyalty to traffic control. "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," IBM Analytics Senior Vice President Bob Picciano said.
The company estimates that 90 per cent of all data generated by devices like smartphones, tablets, connected vehicles and appliances is never analysed or acted on. "With new industry-specific cloud data services and developer tools, IBM will build on that expertise to help clients and partners integrate data from an unprecedented number of IoT and traditional sources," IBM said.
These resources will be made available on an open platform to help manufacturers design and produce a new generation of connected devices that are better optimised for IoT, it added. It will also help business leaders across industries create systems that better fuse enterprise and IoT data to inform decision-making, it said. More than 2,000 IBM researchers, software developers and consultants will be dedicated to delivering real-time insights delivered via the cloud to business and government clients, IBM added in a blog.