I would love to have a few words of opinion from everyone …

When I listen to talks or follow research literature, I do observe a fuzzy usage of terms around the IoT field. Here comes my definition – and I’d love to hear/read yours (beware: this may be provocative)

Internet of Things

A fuzzy description of the fact that devices are directly connected with the Internet (here, the term “device” describes anything from an implanted sensor up to a mobile phone and can be built into whatever from humans to power plants). Newly developing now: “Internet of Everything” – seems that understanding fluctuates, hence definitions need to become even more fuzzy …

Industrie 4.0

A German term describing the 4th industrial revolution (the 1st being “steam”, 2nd “mass production”, 3rd “digital and IT in the industry”, 4th “IoT”, mainly). Despite otherwise claimed in a German wikipedia site, “Industrie 4.0” is not the invention of a German governmental initiative. Industrie 4.0 – put simply – describes the totally interconnected and Internet-connected production process.

Industry 4.0

Same as above – just English. Despite varied claims of speakers that the term “Industry 4.0” does not exist and the term “Industrial Internet” had to be used, Industry 4.0 is widely accepted and used as a term in the definition given above.

Industrial Internet

In spite of many claims, that this was a term mainly introduced to describe and drive GE’s IoT strategy, truth is that this term’s popularity can mainly be retraced to the founding of the Industrial Internet Consortium. Otherwise the term would still lurk around low and not fuzz-up definitions so much.

Digital Business

The broadest of terms describing the disruptive change that a thought-through IoT will bring to all businesses and consumers when connected thoughtfully and efficiently with data, analysis and other business process oriented backend systems. Also, this term refers to a changed user experience, brokerage of information, better info tailoring, etc. – so essentially the term is describing all of the change that the more technology-oriented definitions bring along for anyone and any business.


describes the enrichment of business processes through more accurate information – generated mostly digital and through IoT technologies

Cyber Physical System

This term describes an ecosystem capable of bringing together physics (humans, things – which are connected to the net) with cyber (IT) systems. In essence, the term can be used to describe what lies behind all the IoT/Industry4.0 stuff – what brings them to life in a business process oriented interconnected IT (possible across enterprises and industries). Main aspect in CPSs: Integration (of devices as well as systems (of systems)).

what’s your take on all this?


{feature image found on this blog – hope, the author doesn’t mind reuse}

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