12. Smart Businesses: Better Working Through Technology

The Internet of Things (IoT) promises improved efficiency in offices, factories, and retail stores. In fact, the IoT might make things so efficient that businesses won’t need as many workers in the future. Think robots in the warehouse, intelligent assembly in the factory, and tiny chips embedded in office machines that enable office workers to more fully control the devices—or just collect data from it. It’s all about automating repetitive and predictable processes, and making all sorts of devices and systems talk to each other.

Experts believe that the IoT for business—what some call the Enterprise Internet of Things, or EIoT—will be the largest of the three main IoT sectors. (The other ...

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