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IBM’s Sky Matthews | The Impact of 5G and Edge Computing on IoT Design & Development

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#IoTMakers E061

In episode 61 of the IoT For All Podcast, IBM’s CTO for Engineering Lifecycle Management Applications Sky Matthews joins us to talk about the impact of 5G and new edge computing developments on the design and development of IoT solutions, specifically in the enterprise space.

Sky has a great deal of experience working with clients in complex and embedded systems development across many industries, including telecom equipment, aerospace and defense, automotive, and electronics. At IBM, his focus is on the application of artificial intelligence and analytics in system engineering, designing for IoT, and the creation and management of digital twins.

To kick the episode off, Sky gave us some background on IBM and its role in the IoT ecosystem. We also discussed how that landscape has matured as the focus of companies in the space moved from the technology to the tangible ROI that IoT solutions provide. Sky shared some insight into the perspective of their customers, companies that are often just realizing that what they’re seeking isn’t a solution to a specific problem, but a complete digital transformation.

Sky also spoke to IBM’s position on partnerships, specific to the IoT space, and how integral they are to the success of IoT deployments. Sky said, “partnerships are really essential – we wouldn’t pretend for a second that IBM covers all of IoT… we certainly have our focus areas, but the ecosystem is hugely important and those partnerships are fundamental to our business.”

Changing to a more industry-wide topic, Sky spoke to the impact he expected 5G and hybrid multi-cloud computing would have on the industry as a whole, especially at the enterprise level – allowing for a host of new and unique use cases to become available. And while he said 5G will be transformative, Sky said that large-scale adoption was still a few years out. Much like autonomous vehicles or IoT itself, Sky said that it would take time for the technology to become accessible enough to really transform the landscape.

From his experience designing and developing IoT solutions, Sky spoke to the changes he expected there, including the new mindset that will be required as the line blurs between edge and cloud computing.

To bring the conversation to a close, we spoke on some of the obstacles facing the IoT industry – both with COVID-19 bearing down on us and some of the longer-term challenges that the ecosystem faces. Sky said that the coronavirus pandemic is a transformative event, saying that “the understanding of how connected our world is and how connected our systems are is just made so glaringly clear, here.” Across organizations, Sky said he believed the challenge would be increasing transparency to reduce the silos of our current companies and industries.

“If there’s a good side to this, it’s that it will spur an incredible amount of creativity and innovation,” Sky said.

Interested in connecting with Sky? Reach out to him on Linkedin!

About IBM: IBM is one of the world’s most trusted provider of Information Technology products and services, and a world leader in AI, Cloud, and Quantum computing. They are leading their clients in their next chapter of transformation, as they build agile organizations fueled by data, guided by AI insight and able to work in any cloud environment. Next, quantum computing will become part of the journey to the Cognitive Enterprise.

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Key Questions and Topics from this Episode:

(02:32) Introduction to Sky Matthews

(07:38) How is IBM positioning itself in the IoT landscape?

(12:33) Where is your role in the development of an IoT solution? Who’s your customer?

(15:54) Are there any parts of an IoT solution that you don’t do in-house? What value do you look for in partnerships?

(19:43) As it becomes more widely available, how will 5G impact enterprises?

(24:48) What is hybrid multi-cloud and what impact will it have on the ecosystem?

(28:40) How will these technologies affect the development of IoT solutions?

(34:29) As an industry, what are the biggest challenges facing IoT adoption?

(41:11) Given the uncertainty of the coronavirus, what effects are you seeing in IoT?

(45:37) Are there any announcements we should keep an eye out for at IBM?

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