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2015: Enroute to a hyper-connected world

Wong Heng Chew, President, Fujitsu Singapore | Feb. 24, 2015
In 2015, opportunities for individuals and businesses are expected to be plentiful as Singapore continues to pave the way towards becoming a Smart Nation.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

As Singapore picks up on its momentum to become the world's first Smart Nation, the year 2015 looks likely to be the "Year of Innovation", focused on the need for increased connectivity. We are already seeing the need for hyper-connectivity, in the new era of the Internet of Things (IoT), a world where the digital space connects everything. In 2015, opportunities for individuals and businesses are expected to be plentiful as Singapore continues to pave the way towards becoming a Smart Nation.

Opportunity for Innovation
In a hyper-connected world, connected devices will form the basis of connectivity. Sensors will be embedded into virtually any everyday object, from items at home (refrigerator, washing machine, door lock) to the tools you need for work (car, machines).  According to Gartner, there were 2.5 billion connected devices in 2009 globally, most of which were mobile phones, PCs and tablets. This number is likely to cross 30 billion in 2020, with far greater variety in the types of devices. We have started seeing the launch of connected spectacles and watches. 2015 could be the year for new innovations that will help facilitate a more efficient and convenient lifestyle.

New Career Opportunities
With the number and types of connected devices increasing, the amount of information that society has access to will also increase. However, the data deluge will not be valuable unless we are able to make sense of the information in a manner that is relevant to society. The ability to discover insights, even from seemingly unconnected data sources, will become an important competency. Professionals such as data scientists who are able to perform analytics and provide in-depth insights from collected data, will naturally be in demand accordingly.

Emergence of Digital Ecosystems
Currently, most businesses operate in silos, with value chains enclosed within the particular organisation, usually including suppliers and partners. Going beyond 2015, we envisage the emergence of digital ecosystems with an open web-like form that encompasses both commercial and public entities across different industries. In this hyper-connected world, businesses are able to collaborate dynamically, linked by shared information. This operating model allows businesses to take advantage of the scale and diversity of the ecosystem to provide services that are low cost but high in value, as it has been customised to meet the different needs of consumers. Businesses that move towards a connected infrastructure and an open business model will definitely stand to benefit in the near future.

Security Remains Essential
Increasing connectivity between devices and access to information forms the foundation of a Smart Nation, and also highlights the importance of information security and privacy protection. The ability to build security into data itself will help to lower the barrier for businesses to collaborate. It will also enable businesses to build and exploit cross industry connections to maximise the value of information on each individual for a more personalised experience.


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