I came across an article today which talked about why IoT has fallen short of expectations (check it out here). In summary, the key themes were:
- Optimism of prediction
- Niche consumer value
- Privacy concerns
- Inconsistent standards across hardware/software
- Costs and limitations
- Slow promise of the smart home use case
Reading this reminded me of what tends to happen with the adoption of most disruptive (or new) technologies, whether the Internet, AR/VR, AI, blockchain, or cryptocurrency. It is best represented by the Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies who shows the rise-fall-rise of how markets tend to adopt innovations.
Below I’ve pasted in a Hype Cycle dedicated to IoT:
The key takeaway from the above charts is time. People always overestimate how quickly the mass market will adopt new innovations. There’s an entire body of work dedicated to explaining the reasons and not for this post. But it’s just not easy to get technology to a cost/performance level that works beyond the early adopters. A lot of things have to go right. And that includes one of the biggest things beyond technology: changing human behaviour.