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The ecosystem of everyday objects embedded with computing devices (also known as the Internet of Things) is growing rapidly. Soon, every item we interact with in our daily lives could be controlled through another device. But why does that matter?
Why you should care about the IoT
The Internet of Things is already expanding. Modern factories are now highly automated and integrated with technology. Owners in every industry are starting to use smart buildings to improve energy efficiency. And this will affect you personally as a CRE professional.
One of the biggest shifts in CRE joining the Internet of Things is the integration of e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retail. This has been exemplified by Amazon’s recent acquisition of Whole Foods. Amazon has made it clear they intend to integrate IoT technology into Whole Foods stores, making checkout lines a thing of the past and changing the face of retail CRE forever. If you sell retail spaces, you need to be ready to talk with your clients about how they can follow Amazon’s example and integrate IoT technology with the spaces they’re considering.
But retail is not the only CRE category that is poised to transform as a result of the growth of the Internet of Things. For example, an uptick in IoT-based smart home technology in multifamily buildings could cause a boom in residential interest. If multifamily building owners start using smart home tech before homeowners, people will want to move to live in the most advanced homes.
And in offices, IoT technology like cameras using biometrics to recognize faces will allow for seamless security at entrances and exits. Additionally, apps will make it easy to book open spaces for impromptu meetings––even in other office spaces and buildings, making office real estate an even larger part of the sharing economy.
Will you be prepared for these sorts of shifts and others that come with the integration of the IoT with CRE?
What’s happening now with the IoT
Consider ridesharing apps as an illustration of the current state of the IoT. In true IoT fashion, apps like Uber and Lyft use a representation of a car operating in a virtual world to connect riders with actual cars and drivers in the physical world. The almost seamless process of connecting passengers with drivers is optimized based on the location of each user’s device.
And at home, services like Nest, Lutron, IOTAS and Stockrose work to connect everything from light switches, door locks, thermostats and security systems to personal devices like smart phones so they can be customized to maximize efficiency and make your life easier. But what’s next?
The future potential of the IoT
The true value of the IoT will be realized in the efficiency it creates once it becomes ubiquitous and optimized. According to Google, the IoT will have a net negative power consumption once it becomes the norm. Both energy and time waste will be a thing of the past.
And not only will our daily lives and resource usage become more efficient as a result of the growth of IoT, but we’ll be safer as well. In buildings, smart sensors, cameras and detectors that connect to our personal devices will be able to guide us to safety in the event of a building fire or other catastrophic event. Additionally, the growth of IoT-powered self-driving rideshare cars will eliminate the human error that causes accidents when driving.
But what potential does the IoT hold for CRE specifically? To find out how the future of the IoT will affect each CRE property type and what it means for you as a CRE professional, view our newest resource “The Internet of Things meets CRE: what’s happening and what’s coming.”
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