Where will you be when the digital transformation wave hits?

By Steve Proctor

Within five years the Internet of Things (IoT) will be so ubiquitous, it will be as invisible as Wi-Fi today. Every industry will have rolled out an IoT strategy, big data will be fundamental to success of even the smallest operations, and an explosion in robotics will reshape the manufacturing sector.

For the Boomer still waiting for the helicopter to emerge as the commuting vehicle of choice, predictions about the future can provoke raised eyebrows and healthy degree of skepticism. Show me the proof, they demand.

Absolute proof may elusive, but the next best thing will be showcased May 5 at ITAC – IDC Directions 2016 and CanadianCIO Symposium in Toronto. There senior thought leaders and global researchers will gather to explore how IoT, AI, robotics, mobility, and third platform tools will fuel digital transformation.

“As I travel the country for CanadianCIO Roundtables, I’m struck by the way senior leaders struggle to see the practical application of IoT to get business results – even as their company has first generation of product in the field,” says Jim Love, ITWC CIO and moderator of a conference panel.

“Perhaps at this conference as we explore transformative power of emerging technologies, there will be user cases that will help unleash the potential that has been bottled up.”

Love’s panel discussion session will focus on the dynamics of technology investment to leverage a competitive advantage. His guests in conversation will be Charaka Kithulegoda, Charaka ,  chief information officer at Tangerine, Rob Meikle, CIO City of Toronto and Helen Polatajko, CIO CIBC Mellon.

“Digital transformation is inevitable,” says Love. “Those who do it right will thrive and survive. Those who fail, will simply disappear.”

Other sessions at the conference: IDC research director Nigel Wallis will muse on the power of the Third Platform to solve pandemics, redfine aircraft and outlaw driving in favour of autonomous cars: IDC Reseach Analyst Vlad Mukherjee will explore the role of robotics in the workplaces of the near future; and Bryan Ma, IDC president of client devices, will detail Asian technology trends which may or may not make it to North America.

Frank Gens, IDC’s senior vice president and chief analyst will open the session with his take on how a massive scale up of the Third Platform is going to “flip” the industry’s competitive landscape.