Kathy Gibson reports from the MTN IoT Conference in Sandton – The sharing economy is rapidly becoming a reality as a means of solving problems associated with congestion and underutilisation of expensive resources.
Jimmy Zhu, IoT regional director at Huawei, believes this can extend from cars and bicycles to things like office seats and more.
The sharing economy will be enabled by the Internet of Things (ioT) as a means of tracking, monitoring and managing resources, he says.
The key question in building IoT businesses, Zhu says, is where does the money come from.
“There are two ways to do it: pay as you use, or pay as you gain.”
He cites the example of smart water solutions. This goes beyond smart metering, but involves monitoring the full network and thus improving its efficiency by reducing waste and understanding usage more thoroughly.
Telematics insurance is another example, where short-term insurers can tailor premiums according to driving behaviour. Importantly, this raises the opportunity to change bad behaviour and improve the overall claim landscape.
Connected city lighting is an area that affects every citizen.
“By using IoT-enabled city lighting, cities can save up to 80% of the lighting cost,” Zhu says. “And they can save on labour as well, leading to more cost reductions.”
Huawei provides the data centre, networking and storage solutions that enable data centre and cloud environments for IoT.
“The ecosystem is the most important thing for IoT,” says Zhu.