On the eve of 2020, it was easy to predict that innovation would accelerate in the year ahead. But nobody could have anticipated the pace of reinvention and innovation spurred by the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Business processes have been tested, shattered, and rebuilt. Supply chains have been overloaded, stripped to their essentials, and forged anew. Technologies that keep us in contact while keeping us safe have become everyday tools for huge numbers of people, all over the planet.
Even after the last pandemic-related restrictions finally lift (a milestone we won't reach at least until the end of 2021), we will continue to experience a distinctly new normal, one in which connectivity plays a much larger role than it did a year ago. The Internet of Things (IoT) will power this new normal forward, improving coordination and efficiency even as it makes connected systems smarter and cities and businesses who use them better prepared to respond to similar risks.
Here's a look at the road ahead for IoT and related technologies in several sectors.