Just over 20 years ago, the world experienced a massive technological revolution as digital information began to represent our physical reality through the popularization of a phenomenon called the Internet. Since then, with the ability to access information and communicate remotely from virtually anywhere on the planet, the Internet has made the world more connected than ever before. Today, we are on the cusp of another massive technological revolution, and this time it is our physical reality that will represent digital information.
A vast array of objects can now receive information from and be controlled by the Internet. Information is not only widely distributed, but is now physically manifested by actions generated from devices with a connection to the web. Things like smart phones, heart monitors, drones, washers and dryers, TVs, thermostats, etc. can now be controlled through the interconnected web of information. This concept is referred to as the Internet of Things (IoT).
IoT and Evolving charging models
For as many modern conveniences the IoT creates, there are also many complications. Offerings will take on a whole new definition with the move from physical products to digital ones. Devices with Internet connections will account for many one-time sales; however companies will need to feed digital products to these devices to keep revenue flowing. This has already been seen with music and videos as more people stream rather than buy physical copies. This creates enormous opportunities for companies that are flexible enough to change the structure of their business. Many companies that cannot adapt to this change will struggle significantly.
IoT and the Importance of Billing
Surprisingly, billing will play a critical role in the survival of the enterprise in this brave new world. Billing solutions that cannot efficiently conform to these new offerings will inevitably create obstructions to revenue recognition. Companies need systems that can adapt to change quickly and effectively, because change is the only reliable constant in this evolving world of communications and technology. Businesses with billing flexible enough to adjust to ever-changing norms will greatly surpass their competition.
The IoT Billing Solution in the Cloud
To effectively bill in the IoT, companies must look at the source of their power. Billing is greatly enhanced by the same disruptive technology that powers the majority of the IoT: the cloud. The IoT requires processing power, storage, and interconnectedness; these are all provided through the cloud. The cloud also offers a lightweight, cost-effective billing solution that is ideal for the IoT because it is customizable and constantly updated to conform to new trends in technology.
Companies must proactively take advantage of this ubiquitous trend in technology. With the ability to effectively bill for these new offerings, the enterprise will prosper in the new Internet of Things. While the IoT comes with a set of challenges, it also bears great opportunities; now is the time to seize them.