Authored by Mr. Rishi Bhatnagar, President, Aeris Communication and Chair, IET IoT Panel

India has always topped the charts when it comes to IoT opportunities and continues to be the forerunner in the number of connected devices and boasts of a 35% CAGR for IoT industry till 2023. However, what will it take for us to be the leaders in IoT?

In our view, 3 sectors play a crucial role in crafting India’s IoT leadership story. Manufacturing (Devices & Sensors), Telecommunications and IT/ITeS. While each of these sectors have had their own fascinating individual journeys, we’re now at a juncture where they will have to grow at pace, and in tandem to leverage the opportunities that exist. This, however, depends on how 3 major ecosystem players steer themselves through these sectors – Industry, Academia and the Government.

On the governance and policy front, the success of these sectors depend on how well the existing key policies (National Electronics Policy, National Digital Communications Policy and National Software Product Policy) and formation of new policies (Data Protection, Cybersecurity and IoT Policies) support the sectors. This requires consultation and collaboration of the fragmented ecosystem.  Key schemes like Start-up India, Stand-up India, Make in India, Bharat Net also need to be leveraged to their fullest potential.

The ways ahead are fairly similar across sectors for Academia and Industry. Industries need to move quickly from pilot projects to scalable implementations, earmark adequate budgets for IoT implementation, focus on R&D to solve societal challenges, explore new business models to leverage IoT technologies and lastly (but most importantly) identity and appoint Digital Heads / IoT heads to navigate them through the transformation.

Academia need to focus on establishing IoT Centres of Excellence for students where students and faculty can work on live problems and challenges in industry and research. IoT also needs to get into mainstream curriculum and a credit course should be offered on fundamentals of IoT.

All the players in the ecosystem need to work as ‘One Unit’ for such an interconnected and seamless framework to be effective. We at the IET IoT Panel are committed to being the neutral voice shaping the IoT movement and making India the leader in IoT.