5 themes that dominated tech and IoT conferences in Q2 2020

The first round of virtual conferences among the Covid-19 pandemic is behind us. The IoT Analytics team attended 12 virtual conferences during the second quarter of 2020, each with a focus on the enterprise technology stack and each with some relevance for the Internet of Things.

The 12 virtual conferences attended include :

Alibaba Cloud Summit
AVEVA World Digital
AWS Summit
Microsoft Build
Cisco Live
Huawei Analyst Summit
IIOT World Days
PTC LiveWorx
Siemens Realize Live
Rockwell Automation ROK Live
SAP Sapphire Reimagined
Wirepas Go

IoT Analytics corporate research subscribers have access to the complete 50-page summary document of all conferences, titled: Technology Vendor News – Q2/2020

These are 5 of the top themes that emerged when comparing the insights gained at each of the conferences:

1.   “Digital” has been accelerating during the pandemic

Tech vendors unanimously echo that adoption of many digital technologies has been accelerating. A survey presented by Oden Technologies at IIoT World showed that 71% of organizations give greater importance to digital transformation now. PTC, at their Liveworx conference, highlighted that factory collaboration tools and data security are two hot themes for them and that the migration to the cloud is accelerating. Schneider Electric and AVEVA highlighted “remote everything” as well as “digital for sustainability” as two of the themes accelerated by Covid-19.

2.   Customer needs are changing.

“Covid-19 has shown companies what it means to have IT capacity as a fixed cost in P&L. A clear trend towards modernization is emerging”
Klaus Buerg, Managing Director, AWS, Germany

Siemens, at their Realize Live conferences, reported an increasing demand for rapid application development (with bookings for Siemens Mendix rising 145% yoy) as well as fast production of new products in need enabled by 3D-printing. For Schneider Electric CEO Jean-Pascal Tricoire, the new theme for customers is “resiliency”, either in terms of cost reductions (e.g., the transportation industry) or more capacity and robustness (e.g., food&beverage industry).

3.   Tech vendors were quick to create tools that help during the pandemic

Many tech vendors quickly reacted to the pandemic and created tools to help customers and the public. SAP for example teamed up with Deutsche Telekom to co-develop a Corona warning app in Germany which was in use by ~20% of the German population just 3 weeks after release. Both AWS and Microsoft created a centralized database for relevant Covid data (AWS Covid data lake, Microsoft open machine readable research database). Amazon also provided support for testing and made disaster response credits available to communities who were looking for business continuity in the cloud....