The Internet of Someone Else's Things

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EVANS J., The Internet of Someone Else's Things,, 11.11.2014

Type Article
Topics Business Model, Property, Technology, Interoperability


The IoT "will subtly redefine ownership as we know it. You will no longer own many of the most expensive and sophisticated items you possess. You may think you own them. But you’ll be wrong.".

"Ownership will become a three-legged stool: who physically owns a thing; who legally owns it; …and who has the ultimate power to command it."

For example, cars were prevented from starting because payments were days late; Belkin's routers apparently have to connect to Belkin’s servers before they would connect to the rest of the Internet.

"The fundamental issue here is that the Internet of Things will not have a standard set of open APIs for consumers." And, even if when there are open APIs, providers usually decide to mantain control over them (e.g. Nest).

There is a problem of walled gardens: notwithstanding a system is opened or closed, it is for the most part a walled garden.

In point of architecture, the author suggests a more decentralized IoT: not acentral server, not a cloud, but a peer-to-peer.

"I’m not necessarily opposed to a subtle redefinition of “ownership.” But I don’t want it to come to mean “transferring de facto control over every interesting thing in my possession to distant corporations"."