[SPECIAL REPORT] 10 Mobility / IoT Predictions For Oil & Gas

Tim Haïdar

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In 2015, there were an estimated 2.6 billion smartphone subscriptions worldwide. It is estimated that by 2020 this number will potentially swell to 6.1 billion. According to Cisco, the total number of connected devices expected to be in place by 2020 will number 50 billion. That is six pieces of connected hardware for every human being on Planet Earth. McKinsey estimate that the industry will be worth $11 trillion by 2025.

Twenty years ago it would have been pure science fiction to imagine that such a large percentage of the developed world could access the internet from a pocket-size computer. Today, the mobile revolution and the much evangelised “Internet of Things” (IoT) has taken citizens and businesses to the next stage of real-time device/machine connectivity, data access and decision processing.

In a commercial context, IoT can be understood in the following ways:

  • The ability to connect dissimilar devices in order to hasten communication, operation and functions.
  • The expansion of machine-to-machine (M2M) technology to incorporate all physical/virtual objects in our environment.
  • The interconnection of uniquely identifiable embedded computing-like devices within the existing internet infrastructure.
  • The ability to access data and interpret it to positively impact business workflow. 

Utilising the cloud and parsing information through big data engines, coupled with the capacity to visualise and analyse data while accessing business process rules engines to automate decisions on workflow, can be a driving force for a lean and cost-effective operations. Big data, analytics and IoT are here to stay and are gaining further pervasiveness as more devices are connected and the methods to capture and usefully employ data expand.

In the following analysis, we look at 10 of the trends that we expect to emerge in the mobility and IoT story, and the kind of effects that they will have on an oil and gas industry that is in the throes of a once-in-a-generation price depression.

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