The Internet of Things will be a $3 trillion industry by 2020

So many connections, so much opportunity
So many connections, so much opportunity

The worldwide Internet of Things (IoT) market will increase 133% to $3.04 trillion (about £1.8 trillion, or au$3.3 billion) in 2020, according to a new IDC forecast. The number of IoT-connected units will reach approximately 30 billion in 2020.

The forecast predicts vendors, service providers and systems integrators will have to find ways to integrate products and solutions in order to be successful in the market. IDC also expects innovation from smaller vendors and startups to hasten innovation from large, traditional technology vendors.

IDC is less bullish on the IoT than it was earlier this year. In February, it said services revenue for the IoT will increase from $4.8 trillion (£2.9 trillion, AU$5.3 trillion) in 2012 to a staggering $7.3 trillion (£4.4 trillion, AU$8.2 trillion) in 2017, with a compound annual growth rate of 8.8%. Today's research predicts a compound annual growth rate of 13.3%, but a much lower annual revenue rate.

Believe the hype?

IDC isn't the only research firm predicting big things for the IoT. Gartner's annual "Hype Cycle" report said the IoT will soon become mainstream.

IoT vendor Cisco has recently been an aggressive evangelist of IoT technology. In March, it said it would invest $1 billion (about £605 million, or au$1.1 billion) to build what it said would be the world's largest Intercloud network to tackle the Internet of Everything.

Cisco's projections are a bit more optimistic about the IoT. According to Cisco's research, 50 billion things will be connected to the internet globally by 2020, creating a $19 trillion (around £11 trillion, or au$11.9 billion) ) opportunity for businesses around the world.