3 technologies that will impact the next wave of digital transformation
October 11, 2019 08:59
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The new industrial infrastructure comprises three specific features that perform critical business functions: connectivity, computing, and transactions. Together they facilitate and manage information flows - generation, storage and processing, and secure exchange - creating a foundation on which businesses can operate. Although rooted in the digital world, this infrastructure is as real as the glass, concrete, and steel on which companies are made - and just as critical and important.
As we think about these three features, it is also important to look at three technologies that make them possible:
Connect: Wi-Fi and other types of connectivity
Wi-Fi enables perhaps the most critical part of connected technology infrastructure. Connectivity is itself a key piece of the digital and physical mix across geographical boundaries. Wi-Fi and other connectivity and communication technologies (such as 5G) connect a wide range of devices, from laptops to IoT sensors, between locations, and pave the way for extending a digital-physical layer across a wide range of Locations.
This proliferation of connectivity enables organisations to expand their connectivity to new markets and geographies more easily. Within organisations, this can provide the opportunity to transmit and share information across multiple assets and locations, creating a more connected and transparent business.
Cloud computing: Store, analyse and manage
The cloud has revolutionized the number of organisations that deliver critical storage and computing functions. Just as Wi-Fi can free users from access to the Internet in geographic regions, the cloud can free individuals and organizations from dependence on nearby physical servers.
Cloud can serve as a key element for the next wave of technologies. All companies produce data, the ability to store, maintain and analyse data. So, this can be critical in providing a holistic view of operations enabling intelligent decision-making. Simply put, the cloud provides a place to archive critical data and the infrastructure needed for businesses to manage it.
Blockchain: Trade and trade
If the cloud allows remote storage and computation of data - blockchain supports in exchanging that value. It enables the secure transaction of valuable data from anywhere in the world where a node or transaction is located. Blockchain is about to become a mesh of industrial and commercial transactions, bringing together data from sensors, stakeholders and systems.
With the ability to connect via Wi-Fi, leverage cloud computing and storage, and secure transactions worldwide via blockchain, companies can scale an initial idea or a product for a global reach more easily. Using this infrastructure, organisations can link data across sites, aggregate it, extract insights, and manage a large amount of information with a relatively small footprint - even in the absence of traditional facilities, servers, or other large capital assets.
The bottom line:
As a crucial first step, organisations and leaders must invest time in understanding them. Disruption is inevitable, but it is too simplistic to consider these changes as technology "dominating" or "subverting" specific industries or companies. By moving away from the idea that information technology exists in their environment, leaders should take a broader view and recognize that digital transformation is a proposal for an organisation or ecosystem. With that in mind, it is important to move beyond IT-focused discussions to a more holistic conversation about digital transformation.