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IBM Set to Invest $3bn in Internet of Things Unit

Tim Maytom

IBM CEOIBM has announced it plans to invest $3bn (£2.03bn) over the next four years to establish a new unit focused on the Internet of Things that will built a cloud-based open IoT platform for clients and partners.

The computing pioneer has already worked on IoT applications with its Smarter Planet and Smarter Cities projects, which delivered solutions for water management, traffic congestion and customer loyalty, among others.

The new platform will enable manufacturers to design a produce a new generation of connected devices optimised for the Internet of Things, and help business leaders across a variety of industries to create systems that combine enterprise and IoT data for more informed decision-making.

"Our knowledge of the world grows with every connected sensor and device, but too often we are not acting on it, even when we know we can ensure a better result," said Bob Picciano, senior vice president of IBM Analytics. "IBM will enable clients and industry partners apply IoT data to build solutions based on an open platform. This is a major focus of investment for IBM because it's a rich and broad-based opportunity where innovation matters."

According to IBM, 90 per cent of all data generated by mobiles and connected devices is never analysed or acted upon, with up to 60 per cent of this data beginning to lose value within milliseconds of being generated.

The company's IoT cloud platform will aim to challenge this by providing new analytics services that will then be used to design and deliver vertical industry IoT solutions, as well as enabling users of IBM's Bluemix platform-as-a-service to integrate IoT data easily into their operations.

As part of the commitment to IoT platforms, IBM also announced a new global strategic alliance with The Weather Company, collecting data from more than 100,000 weather sensors and aircraft as well as millions of smartphones, buildings and vehicles to help industries understand the impact the weather has on their business outcomes.

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