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CES 2014: IoT and wearables have enterprise CIOs scheming

Emily McLaughlin, Associate Site Editor

The 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show had the Twittersphere agog last week with information on such new gadgets as bendable televisions, 3-D printers, solar-powered cars and -- of course -- a veritable runway of new technology wearables.

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One image that kept popping up was the wrist shot. Conference attendees oohed and ahhed over one watch after another, ranking their favorites for consumers. Other popular wearable devices were different takes on Google Glass and this year's favorite holiday gift, the FitBit.

Business wearables?

The technologies seem great for consumers, but what influence will they have on the enterprise and CIOs in particular? SearchCIO headed to Twitter to ask those talking about #CES2014 just that, unleashing a torrent of suggestions:

Our tweeters might be ahead of the curve on this. In the Harris Poll of 2,250 U.S. adults surveyed online by Harris Interactive (Nov. 2013), 37% of respondents say they're "not at all familiar" with wearable tech, and 33% say they've heard the term but don't know anything about it. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, opening keynote speaker at CES, said wearables aren't taking over the market today because they aren't solving real problems.

While they aren't all over the market now, wearables are expected to be a $10 million market by 2016:

The Internet of Things

The IoT isn't new; according to our favorite encyclopedia, Kevin Ashton proposed the term in 2009. But the concept continues to gain in popularity. Why? For starters, it represents a ton of money. Cisco CEO John Chambers values the Internet of Things at $19 trillion. If that number isn't enough to catch a CIO's attention, industry analysts expect to see $50 billion in IoT connected devices in use by 2050, communicating with PCs, tablets, smartphones or whatever the network-connected device of choice will be in 36 years.

But CIOs should not wait until then to incorporate IoT into their IT strategies. Within the enterprise, IoT connected devices can offer a whole new level of efficiencies and insights, according to Maureen Ohlhausen, commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission, who spoke about the opportunities and risks of the IoT at CES:

After following Twitter coverage of IoT talks at CES, we here at SearchCIO are still left with several unanswered questions: What bandwidth will IoT connected devices run on? How will enterprises keep data protected? Feel free to weigh in. For another overview on wearable technology, read Senior Features Writer Karen Goulart's Searchlight column. Follow SearchCIO for more updates about how these new technologies are influencing the enterprise.


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