Industry leaders have been looking toward and anticipating the Internet of Things for quite some time. EDUCAUSE Review asked five experts in the field to share their insights on lessons learned, on current problems solved and created, and on the possible future impact of the IoT.
Predictions for the growth of the IoT vary considerably: some experts forecast that about 20 billion devices will be connected by 2020; others put the number closer to 40 or 50 billion. What does all this mean for colleges and universities? Considering the key role being played by vendors in this market, we decided to ask some industry leaders in higher education a few questions.
How we can truly unpack the value of the IoT?
The contributors were all asked the following five questions:
- The Internet of Things has evolved over many decades as wearables, RFID, BYOD, wireless devices, and more have increased in both number and usage. How do you define the IoT today?
- What game-changing IoT devices and uses do you expect we’ll be seeing on campuses within the next one to three years?
- What are the most exciting academic and administrative benefits enabled by the IoT for higher education?
- How will the demands of a more connected student and a more connected campus influence—positively and/or negatively—the systems, processes, and infrastructure of the current higher education landscape?
- Will issues of privacy and data ownership stand in the way of a fully realized IoT? What other barriers or challenges will need to be addressed?
Great set of questions that lend themselves to a good discussion with your student cohort, as well as with industry experts! What does the average lecturer and/or student think or even understand about the IoT impact or potential?
To be honest, I haven’t seen very little impact yet in my day-to-day work on campus for administration or connection with students. I wouldn’t mind a few connected objects – would you?