Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak revealed his concerns about the future of the Internet of Things industry, saying it is about to reach the bubble phase. Wozniak warns that the expectations and hopes of founders are too high, as the industry is not yet ready to be commercialized.
He compared the current situation in the industry with the dotcom bubble of 1990s, when internet startups failed to turn a profit despite huge amounts of money poured into the industry.
“I feel it’s kind of like a bubble because there is a pace at which human beings can change the way they do things. There are tonnes of companies starting up,” Wozniak said during his speech at the World Business Forum in Australia.
Wozniak still remains an employee at Apple, although he left the company in 1987 to start working on new projects. Nowadays, he dedicates a lot of time to educating people and giving presentations about innovations and technology.
While speaking at the World Business Forum, he also described his career at Apple and spoke on the future tendencies that will change technology.
“The most important thing for the future, which all of the leaders of our time with brains like Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk and Bill Gates are talking about as the biggest threat to humanity, is that once machines have intelligence and can think themselves, that’s a turning point,” he said.
Wozniak has also unveiled his fear that one day super-intelligent machines will outstrip their human developers. “I’m hoping they only ever reach our level, because otherwise the outcome of that is like the movies show, like it’s pretty negative,” he noted.
While comparing the role of engineers and managers in creating innovative products, he said “managers are the key between engineers who know how excellent something can become and what people actually want.”
According to a study, conducted by research firm Markets and Markets, the world IoT industry is forecasted to reach $US290 billion by 2017, showing an annual growth of 30%. Meantime, Cisco predicts the number of Internet-connected devices globally will increase from 25 billion in 2015 to 50 billion in 2020. That explains why such tech giants as Google are actively working on smart and connected appliances.
Wozniak is not the only one who doesn’t believe in the success of IoT industry. Last year, a Vice President of IoT at IBM, Paul Brody, stated the sector is in “a classic bubble phase,” adding that all information on these devices is useless.
However, the bubble hasn’t formed yet and the investors have to actively pour money like they did in late 1990s before the dotcom crash.