Towards collaborative, inclusive IoT Ecosystem

Published in News

By Datuk Madius Tangau

Imagine the street lights adjusting their level of lighting according to visibility on the road to improve drivers’ safety; the community participating in the police forces and local authorities to combat crime; having public transportation information in real time right in your hand; traffic lights communicating with vehicles on the road to ease congested areas; real time early disaster warning, and enhanced and efficient first respond management system.

This scenario is possible by leveraging Internet of Things (IoT) technologies.

The Internet is evolving to give better insight and foresight to us humans to enhance our daily operations and processes through a world of networked smart devices equipped with sensors, connected to the Internet, which in turn through the exploitation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics translate the gathered data into new economic opportunitiesthrough new applications and services.

The growth of population, growth of global economy, and the advancement of communication technology has added pressure to existing finite resources. As a result, this has created the ideal environment for the IoT technology to flourish.

Of late, there are majorIoT implementations focusing on energy, water, transport, healthcare, agriculture, and government service deliveries. For example, Finland has implemented national energy management system, Korea recently introduced elderly care while in China IoT is employed to monitor pollution levels to control the number of vehicles entering major cities.

Like any ground breaking new technology, IoT enables cross fertilisation of market applications and services resulting disruption of business model such as everything-as-sharing and application-based economy.

Take the taxi industry for example, IoT has clearly revolutionized the traditional taxi hailing from the street curbs through taxi booking through mobile applications. As the IoT technology is fully embedded and new business model is further defined, created innovative companies where taxi services are displaced by the concept of ride sharing.

To create new value out of IoT, several challenges must be addressed to unleash its full potential.

The fear of technology adoption and information silos needs to be eliminated to facilitate the creation of innovative applications and services. Malaysia must garner all her resources through the support of inter-Government agencies and collaborate with industry players and academia to develop the right ecosystem for IoT industry.

We have set the Vision in the National IoT Strategic Roadmap to chart the path for Malaysia to become the Regional IoT development Hub to create a RM9.5 billion of yearly economic contribution by 2020, and RM42.5 billion in 2025.

We need to first develop an IoT industry ecosystem which is conducive to accelerate the implementation of IoT technologies;secondly strengthen the capabilities and capacities of technoprenueurs in developing IoT-based application and services; and thirdly to position Malaysia as The Regional IoT Development Hub.

Talent is always top-of-mind for implementing any initiative of a nation. Thus, technopreneur development is identified as the short-term strategy to strengthen and revitalise Malaysian technopreneurs to be participate in the global competitive arena. Technopreneurincubation initiatives should be intensified to grow service-based entrepreneurs to harvest the 80pc IoT-driven market opportunities which gravitate towards applications and services.

Currently, many industry players are not familiar with the implementation of IoT. IoT itself is a big idea and there are many elements contributing to the realisation of the IoT concept. It is akin to a jigsaw puzzle that requires all pieces to fit together in the right way to achieve defined goals. Seeing is believing, therefore the strategic roadmap has identified but not limit to the four market segments to demonstrate the value of IoT in convincing users to willingly adopt emerging technologies such as IoT.

The selection of the focus areas is premised on the strength of existing national ICT initiatives, which shall provide a strong springboard for Malaysia to leapfrog towards widespread advances of IoT in the identified strategic focus areas.

Agriculture being the strategic segment will utilise IoT to boost income the B40 (below forty percent income level)community by enhancing the sectorial productivity while preserving national food security.

Both Healthcare and Manufacturing segments are identified as growth segment, with the former aims to improve healthcare service delivery, and the latter with objective to enhance the supply chain efficiency and reduce the gap between small & medium enterprises and multinational corporations. The transportation segment is identified to serve the community’sneeds by improving the efficiency and service levels of transport operations. The market deployment strategy is aimed to manifest visible value and illustrates how an array of IoT-related technologies is being deployed in different scenarios.

This will facilitate stakeholder adoption of new solution and reduces implementation complexity.

Furthermore, in aligning with Malaysia aspiration to position Cyberjaya as Global Technology Hub, several initiatives currently undertaken between Cyberview, MCMC and MIMOS to formulate Cyberjaya as the IoT Application and Service Technology Development Hub, which target to be fully operation in early 2017. The Hub will be equipped with IoT Service Platform that enable local technopreneurs with competitive capacities and capabilities which are on-par with global players, and subsequently participate in global IoT arena. As mentioned earlier, technology complexities and data silo are the two main concerns that may prevent participation of local technopreneurs. Henceforth, in RMK11, MIMOS, an agency under my ministry has developed an open technology platform to harmonise the myriads of the multi-standard of IoT-related technology. The open technology platform will lower the entry barriers for local entrepreneur and enables for local industry players to leverage and harness breakthrough convergent technologies for the development of applications and services.

As for data sharing, the key concerns are the protection of privacy personal data and the commercial rights of the data owners that can be alleviated through the open technology framework. The framework will embed with mechanism in preserving data privacy and security for both users and enterprises. Through the open technology platform the industry will be able to cross develop new solutions that work seamlessly across a wide range of applications with flexibility, scalability and compatibility. Consequently, this framework provides a competitive advantage and new opportunities for Malaysian technopreneurs to diversify and increase revenue streams.

Furthermore, strategic and active promotion of the Malaysia ecosystem via various government agencies’ community will generate demand, which in turn will broaden the market beyond Malaysia. We could position the Malaysian IoT ecosystem as the IoT value-based partner of the world, to create the country new economic source and new jobs for Malaysian.

Looking ahead, consumers, the government and businesses are moving inevitably towards the IoT.

While we are concerned about information security and privacy, information storage and management and the digital divide, it is imperative that the growth of IoT in Malaysia occur within an ecosystem driven by key strategic thrusts that establish a framework for its endeavours. The enablers shall harness the intrinsic values of the three strategic thrusts towards the institutionalisation and recognition of Malaysia as the Premier Regional IoT Development Hub.

Source: Daily Express

M.Hanis