The Internet of Things (IoT) is considerably growing in Italy, especially thanks to smart meters and connected cars according to a research of the University of Milan.

Regulations are the driver of the Internet of Things

As every year, the University of Milan published a research on the status of the Internet of Things in Italy in 2016. As happened last year, they emphasised that the major growth is due to the adoption of gas smart meters (+34%) which according to Italian law shall be installed in at least 11 million units by 2018.

However, even without considering the segment of smart meters, the growth was of 20% compared to 2015, with 7.5 million connected cars (+20%) and a considerable growth of also smart building technologies (+18%) followed by smart logistics (+9%) and smart home devices (+7%).

Smart city projects are the “black sheep” of the country with 51% of the Italian medium/large municipalities that launched a smart city project, but over half of them that are still in the testing phase.

The Industrial Internet of Things is still at its very beginning

I believe that the most surprising figure of the report is that over 25% of the interviewed companies do not know much about the potentials of the Internet of Things. This scenario might have changed during the last months, following the granting by the Italian Government of a major tax discount for investments in IoT technologies.

There is no doubt that convincing a company to change the way they do business on the basis of something that is still unclear to them is difficult. But

the IoT is a revolution that might not give time to catch up to late adopters!

I published a blog post some time ago about the legal issues of the Industrial Internet of Things. And one of the main challenges of the Internet of Things is that it leads to new legal issues never experienced before by several companies.

The digital revolution cannot wait!

The lack of skills in companies to deal with the Internet of Things technologies is one of the main issues of the current delays by some of them in their adoption. This is interesting as a global KPMG research outlined in the chart below had identified the same issues

Click here to view chart

Many companies do not have the skills to tackle the IoT, but they do not even have the vision and the understanding of the potential impact on their business.

This makes the current period very interesting. Lawyers are no longer just legal advisors (maybe I have never been just that!), but they are “evangelists” of business opportunities and legal risks.

This is confirmed by also the tendency of some business consultants to seek partnerships with us, as they see that an essential components for their clients’ shift to digital is the implementation of an adequate legal protection.