Analytics, digital twins separate pack in industrial IoT, says Forrester

The research firm says C3 IoT, IBM, Microsoft, PTC and SAP are leaders in the industrial IoT game.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

The technology behind the industrial Internet of things is maturing rapidly and the leaders--C3 IoT, IBM, Microsoft, PTC and SAP--are all winning via analytics, integration with enterprise software and digital twin technology, according to Forrester.

In a Forrester wave report analyzing 15 industrial IoT technology companies, the research firm named C3 IoT, IBM, Microsoft, PTC and SAP leaders in the market.

Common threads among the leaders included a public cloud profile, analytics capabilities and API-led integration. What's also interesting is how some companies like C3 IoT are focusing on the analytics part of the industrial IoT equation and leaving the actual connecting of devices to players like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure. C3 IoT is a partner of both AWS and Azure.

Here's a look at how Forrester sees the industrial IoT platform market.


Forrester ranked the software vendors based on their current offerings, strategy and market presence. Strategy and offerings were broken down into components and weighted. For instance, C3 IoT scored high on multiple fronts such as connect functions, management console, security, data and services.

IBM scored well on application enablement and analytics and data. Microsoft and PTC partnered well and had good installed bases. SAP was differentiated with its Leonardo IoT efforts even though Forrester noted that the "product portfolio terminology is confusing."

Leaders that had their own public clouds tended to favor them, according to Forrester.

Other key items worth noting in the Forrester report:

  • Hitachi is emerging in digital twin technology and is strong in Japan, but not known well elsewhere. The company needs to develop a set of prepackaged apps for customers.
  • GE Digital has moved Predix beyond hype, but will struggle to prove it's in the IoT game for the long haul. Indeed, GE Digital is reportedly for sale.
  • Oracle's strategy revolves around preintegrated apps.
  • Siemens MindSphere is becoming increasingly open and that bodes well for its developer, digital twin and hardware at the edge.
  • AWS' IoT efforts are evolving and cover a lot of turf. Forrester dinged AWS somewhat because "it has few industrial-focused prebuilt applications compared with others in this analysis."
  • Cisco is the laggard of the group, but has some assets with Jasper and its Kinetic platform. The catch is that those two parts aren't integrated.

Related: C3 IoT raises $100 million, eyes global expansion | 3M taps C3 IoT as Internet of Things, AI platform | C3 IoT's Tom Siebel: CEO, boards driving IoT, digital transformation deals


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