IoT will be everywhere in 2023 as an essential part of digital transformation. Philippe Cases, Co-Founder and CEO of Topio Networks, joins Ryan Chacon on the IoT For All Podcast to discuss how IoT will change in 2023 and beyond. They explore what is meant by the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0, dataspaces and data sovereignty, digital twins, and where sustainability fits into digital transformation.
Philippe Cases is the Co-Founder and CEO of Topio Networks, an industry catalyst accelerating the formation of markets by creating communities. Topio Networks has a community of 1.2 million professionals dedicated to making the business of connected things a reality. In addition to running the company, he specializes in artificial intelligence, big data, smart cities, and mobility (connected cars and automated vehicles). He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and runs the weekly ReadWrite Labs webinar.
Prior to Topio, he was a general partner of venture funds and made investments consistently as a venture capitalist in data technology with companies such as Rightpoint (Acq. by e.piphany), Adknowledge (Acq. by CMGI), Inquira (Acq. by Oracle), Vue Technology (Acq. by Sensormatic), Jaspersoft (Acq. by Tibco), Silk Technology (Acq. By Palantir), and Akili Interactive.
His entire life he’s been interested in innovation. While in engineering school, he helped launch the school local radio station and his home town’s first job fair. During his first job in the mid-1980s, he became interested in big data and AI. At the time, he helped develop one of the first commercial rule engines to select loans and build a report generator focused on evaluating company financial risks. Both products were used at the time in the bank branches.
As part of being an investor, he spotted SaaS as a trend in 1997 and made his first investments in the space then. Following the early 2000 meltdown, he developed a model to spot financial trends and evaluate timing of investment opportunities. This approach contributed to top decile fund returns in the two funds he was involved with. The landscapes Topio develops are directly inherited from this methodology.
Specialties: Smart Cities, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, Dapps, Open Source, SaaS, Low-Cost Business Models, Edge Computing, IoT
Interested in connecting with Philippe? Reach out on LinkedIn!
About Topio Networks
Topio Networks is an industry research platform for all facets of digital transformation, accelerating markets and businesses by providing detailed information about use cases, verticals, and industries. We are an industry catalyst for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, bringing in the age of autonomy, where figuring out the interoperability between humans, machines, and cloud-based systems is essential. Smart spaces, smart objects, AI, and humans, all interacting with each other, will comprise the new autonomous intelligent world. By leveraging our open platform, businesses can benefit from meaningful data insights, market feedback and surveys, and information about the effectiveness of their company thought leadership. We provide market access through events and lead generation.
Key Questions and Topics from this Episode:
(00:47) Introduction to Philippe and Topio Networks
(02:57) What does Fourth Industrial Revolution mean?
(04:52) How IoT will change in 2023
(09:16) Dataspaces, digital twins, and data sovereignty
(14:26) Where sustainability fits into digital transformation
(18:33) Exciting developments for 2023 and beyond
(20:11) Priorities at Topio for 2023
(20:57) Upcoming Topio conferences
(21:26) Learn more and follow up
– [Ryan] Hello everyone, and welcome to another episode of the IoT For All Podcast, I’m Ryan Chacon, and on today’s episode, we are going to be talking about The Fourth Industrial Revolution, and the IoT landscape and changes we may see in 2023. With me today will be Philippe Cases, the CEO and co-founder of Topio Networks, and they are an industry research platform that focuses on all facets of digital transformation. Before we get into this episode, please give this video a thumbs up, subscribe to the channel if you have not done so already, and hit that bell icon so you can get the latest episodes as soon as they’re out, other than that, let’s get onto the episode. Welcome, Philippe, to the IoT For All Podcast, thanks for being here this week.
– [Philippe] Thank you so much for having me, Ryan. It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to yourself and your audience today.
– [Ryan] Yeah, it’s super exciting, I’m super excited to have you here. I know our audience is gonna get a ton of value out of this. Let’s kick this off by having you give a quick introduction about yourself and Topio for our audience.
– [Philippe] Awesome. So I’m the co-founder and CEO of Topio Networks. For those who don’t know Topio, we’re an industry catalyst focused on this next evolution of digital transformation. We call it “the age of autonomy”. Gartner speaks about hyper-automation, I’m sure we will clarify those terms later during the podcast, but you know, those are where we’re focusing on. On my side, I’m in the latter part of my career. I started in the eighties building a group focused on data science and artificial intelligence for a bank in France, and then moved on to become a venture capitalist for more than 30 years.
– [Ryan] Wow.
– [Philippe] I started my career as a venture capitalist in Europe in the ’90s, and then moved to Silicon Valley in 1994, right at the time where the Internet was starting. So, I’ve been blessed to see the Internet growing, the emergence of cloud computing and SaaS, and then the mobile application platform, and now IoT. So I’ve seen a lot of those digital transformation happening. And I’m really humble, right, to have seen all those all those trends happening in Silicon Valley and having me be part of it. I’m also very excited by this new, huge, new one that is coming up, I talk about a tsunami. Because it’s gonna transform our society. It’s gonna productize services, so provide an additional layer of productivity. And it’s gonna free ourself for more creative and executive work. And so my daily work, right, consists of providing advisory services to companies and helping them transform themself. We do education, so we have the Topio Networks Academy. And we are running two large scale events, one is Edge Computing World, and the other is Intelligent Infrastructure. And all in all, we have now a community of about 1.2 million people.
– [Ryan] That’s fantastic. That’s awesome.
– [Philippe] Thank you so much, yeah.
– [Ryan] Yeah, that’s great. So, I wanted to actually refer to something that you spoke about, I believe, or you wrote about, talking about the Fourth Industrial Revolution and interoperability of artificial intelligence in humans. Can you try to talk a little bit about kind of what that means for our audience?
– [Philippe] Yeah, so yeah, you know, we call this new phase the “age of autonomy”, right? And so, if you think about it, the last 20 years has been about connecting human, you know, first with their PC, and then, you know, make them mobile through their smartphones. And then, in this new age, we are now connecting devices with IoT, and we are also making them intelligent. And, so now, we have robots, autonomous products, that are coming up to play. And then, by adding camera and sensors in entire spaces, we can make, now, the physical spaces becoming intelligent as well. So, you can have, you know, an intelligent store, an intelligent factory, an intelligent city. And, if you think about it now, we are gonna able be to have robots, an autonomous device, working with augmented human in intelligent spaces, collaborating, doing stuff, right? And, in the same way electronic trade platforms talk to each other at a millisecond transaction in the financial services industry, we’re gonna be able to do the same thing in the real world, right? So, intelligent objects, robot, operating at the speed, you know, almost real time, communicating with intelligent space, cloud-based system, in real-time. And that’s gonna improve productivity and provide more agility and resiliency in companies while being sustainable, believe it or not.
– [Ryan] Totally agree, yeah, that’s fantastic. Appreciate you kind of elaborating on that. And then, as it relates to the IoT industry, and kind the current landscape we have now, what do you see changing the most in 2023, and what factors are really kind of contributing to that change?
– [Philippe] Well, so, if you think about it, right? So, if you think about it, there are many technology at play in the age of autonomy, right? So, IoT is gonna collect data in real-time, and then, also, send insight about what to do to those objects, or to the space. Age two cloud is gonna enable the cost effective and sustainable and loop-latency processing. You’re gonna have digital twins, A.I. simulations, blockchain, all those technologies are gonna be at play. And so, if you think about specifically IoT, right? IoT is playing a major, it’s a major layer of that new infrastructure. And, on a macro basis, more device are becoming connected and those device are becoming smarter. They are also becoming cheaper and more sustainable with technologies, emerging technologies, like Ambient IoT. I don’t know if you’ve covered that in your podcast. But, I think it’s an interesting trend to look at, and that is emerging now. then, you know if you’re thinking about where we are, right? So, as we discussed, right? We need to connect, we need to create intelligence space, we need to connect the device and make them smarter. We need to connect with the cloud, and then we need to, with the platforms into those in intelligence spaces. And, if you think about it, right, the use case have emerged now to create intelligent and connected space, such as factories, stores, hospitals, and you know, this vision is not far away, right? Like, for instance, Kroger, today, partners with Nvidia to optimize the efficiency of the store through the use of digital twins that are updated in real time with customer data moving in the store. Amazon in same thing, is now, you know automating their entire warehouse, and creating a same-day delivery approach while keep, while being at zero carbon emissions. So, all of us are com- are intelligent spaces, intelligent stores, so those are happening, right? So, so we need sensors, we need IoT, and IoT is being implemented there. Where there is less of, of a growth at this point, and we are not seeing the use case yet, but they are gonna come for sure as virtualization technology on device are taking hold, and TinyML is also taking hold, is on the intelligent objects, right? So, so it’s happening, but it’s not happening as fast as the intelligent spaces.
– [Ryan] No, that’s great. Yeah. It’s a very interesting kind of outlook to focus on. I mean, with, you know, IoT and AI, and just lots of different things that are happening across industries, IoT’s gonna play a pretty prominent role. And I think
– [Philippe] Yeah, absolutely.
– [Ryan] the growth of, or the maturity of the technology, the cost coming down, the new use cases and kind of successes companies are seeing in this space that’s gonna contribute to more adoption, and all of that data is just gonna enable so much more for organizations to, kind of, be able to do and industries to be able to do, so. It’s a very-
– [Philippe] Yeah, I mean I think, the big year, sorry to interrupt you, Ryan,
– [Ryan] No, you’re fine.
– [Philippe] The biggest there is, is really about people understanding that it’s a new paradigm shift, and that they need to start to think through things a little bit differently. Think about Amazon, right? So, Amazon is saying, we are gonna do same-day delivery with zero carbon footprint. That’s kind of their mantra. And when they do that, right, they look at everything and they look at maybe instead of just looking at implementing one use case, they they implement 10, 15, 20 use case. And so, they are looking at it very differently and I think right now, a lot of companies are short-changing themselves by just focusing on one use case instead of really focusing on what do we want to do different? And how are we gonna use technology such as autonomy to actually make that happen.
– [Ryan] Absolutely. No, I couldn’t agree more. So let me ask you, when it comes to kind of, we talked about IoT as a whole in, in 2023, but when it comes to, like, dataspaces, digital twins, data sovereignty, those kinds of areas, what do you, what are you kind of, what are your, like, thoughts around, like, or your vision for kind of those areas going forward?
– [Philippe] Yeah, so, those areas are happening as we speak, right? Because, people are starting to understand that their enterprise cannot work in a vacuum. They are working across, they have ecosystems, they are working in industry, and they know that now they are gonna share, they need to share data with those, with those partners. And you know, from, for logistic for supply chain logistics standpoint, for visibility, there are many, many reasons why they’re doing that. And for the age of autonomy, it’s gonna be very important to be able to do that because we are gonna have to share data in real time to make our robot works with other robots coming from our partners that are operating in the same space. So, it’s very important to be able to do that, and it’s happening today. So if you think about the two things that people are talking about, one is data space. So, a data space is, is a space that is basically shared by an entire industry, and the the industry starts sharing, provides the information in that space, and then people from that, other people from that industry need to use that data will come there. And so, there is a, there is a notion of security, of course, there is a notion of understanding who the person who is gonna use the data is. So it’s a it’s a concept of trustworthiness, right? Or, you know, so people are gonna be ranked and you are gonna say, this guy, you know, knows how to use the data, and so you’re gonna be much more comfortable to share that data. So, those are, those are called data space and it’s happening now with our foundation like Gaia X in Europe, and they have about 8,000 individual contributors, about 500 companies that are building those data spaces in automotive, in everywhere. And then, and then those data space need to be sovereign, right? So, you need to be able to know who the people you’re working with are, you need to be able to provide them with the right data. You need to tell them the data need to be updated in a certain way. And right now, there is a lot of work to be done because I mean, companies don’t know, don’t like, don’t know how to trust their data. So that’s
– [Ryan] Sure.
– [Philippe] the data space, data sovereignty. And then the other thing you mentioned is digital twin which is a little bit different.
– [Ryan] Yeah.
– [Philippe] And it’s gonna leverage the data space because each company is gonna want to start to build a digital twin of everything, a digital twin of their product, a digital twin of, of their space. And, by the way, Ryan, a digital twin, you probably know that, and your audience knows that, but it’s a replica of what’s happening of a real time object that is updated in real time, right? So, think about, I mean the way I like to think about them is like a map that, like, if you are in, if you like games, right, video games, you know, video games are running on maps that are running in real time. It’s the same thing here. It’s like your building those maps that are now going to be able to be leveraged by your data teams through simulations, through AI, and running games in AR, like “Ready Player One” or
– [Ryan] Right, right.
– [Philippe] in VR, right? So, you’re gonna be able to do that. I mean it’s already happening and you’re gonna be able to do that more and more in your real life working in companies.
– [Ryan] Oh, I totally agree. I think it’s very interesting to kind of think about how data spaces are gonna be used. And then, to your point about being able to trust the data, and then, obviously, digital twins, like you said is a little bit different, but the digital twins and the the simulation elements are very, have a huge area to play value in, and they have for a number of years. But, as companies are able to understand how to utilize digital twins, and when it comes to solutions, I think it’s very exciting space to pay attention to.
– [Philippe] Well, I mean, you know, it’s a new, it’s a new, if you think about it, it’s a new paradigm of application development.
– [Ryan] Absolutely.
– [Philippe] Today, you know what people are thinking about, like Gartner talks about hyperautomation, but they are very focused on, you know, developing techno- developing applications the same way it has always been done, but there is another type of application that are gonna be built that are fundamentally games. And those applications are gonna be, are gonna have the economics of games and need to be sort through as games. So, so it, and it, it’s gonna be, so you’re gonna see, like, games like that emerging in companies spending 10, 20, 30 million dollars to develop games that their workers are gonna use.
– [Ryan] Totally agree. Absolutely. Now, let me ask you, kind of as it relates to the sustainability side of IoT, right? Like we have, you know, tons of connected devices in the, you know, millions of billions to eventually trillions of connected devices, more data is being processed every year going forward, energy consumption is going up. How is, how does sustainability really fit into this picture of the growth that we’re projecting?
– [Philippe] Yes. So, if you look at the different technologies that are at play, whether you look at AI, IoT, and device, as you said, trillions of, hundred X more device than there was before.
– [Ryan] Right.
– [Philippe] The amount of data being processed that is gonna be you know, a hundred to 200X more, you know. It’s fairly clear that the age of autonomy, if we are not managing it, is gonna increase significantly power consumption and carbon footprint. Now, you know, if you look at what happened with the cloud, you know, we have seen the same amount, not at the same scale but we’ve seen the same amount of increase in term of processing and data processing and the like. And, yet, the energy consumption of the industry only increase by 10%. So, you can, you can manage that, but in order to manage it, you need to put in place infrastructure that is gonna enable you to track, very granularly, what’s happening on an hourly basis. If you look at the hyperscaler now, people like Google or Amazon, they’re tracking their
– [Ryan] Right
– [Philippe] carbon footprint and energy consumption on an hourly basis. So, if you can, so if you can think about, as your first use case for your edge computing device, your edge computing framework, if you can start thinking about sustainability being that, you can start tracking those, everything that is happening at the edge and start, and start understanding what you need to do in order to in order to process, I mean, have less carbon footprint. And at the end of the day, I would think that for edge computing is killer hub for sustainability because, as you said, you know, it’s gonna process a lot more, and so, we need to be able to track it, and sustainability is a killer hub for edge because we need edge computing to track in real time what’s happening. And, I would say that, for me, one of the things that I tell companies when they talk, when we talk about it, is that today we are not talking about carbon footprint and sustainability when we look at evaluating projects, and we need to. We need to, we need to think about features, we need to think about ROI, we need to think about latency, we need to think about data sovereignty, but one criteria should be sustainability. We need to develop applications that are gonna be carbon footprint, at least, neutral, if not negative.
– [Ryan] Yeah, for sure. Yeah. It’s an interesting kind of thing to follow mainly because it’s not a situation we’ve really been in with the growth of an industry like this when it comes to the devices that are gonna be out in the world. And the devices, not only does device number grow, but the types of devices grow, the use cases, the applications, the environments, everywhere these are gonna be deployed is changing and growing, and being able to, kind of, handle the sustainability side of things, and keeping that in mind as the industry grows is gonna be something that’s very important and gonna be something that I know a lot of people are paying attention to.
– [Philippe] And they have to, right? But they need to put in place infrastructure in order to do that, and right now, the last 20 years, they’ve been relying on the hyperscaler to do that for them in the cloud. But now, now they have to do it, they have to do it within, within their own premise, and so, they have to equip themselves to make that happen.
– [Ryan] Totally agree. So, I have two quick questions I wanna ask you before I let you go, here. The first is around, kind of, we talked about the landscape in IoT and, kind of, factors that are kind of influencing it, but, let me ask you, what are you most excited about, kind of, throughout the rest of 2023 into next year? Is there anything that’s kind of really catching your attention as far as things you’re most looking forward to happening in the industry?
– [Philippe] Well, I mean, I think we are, I’m talking at Edge Computing World in November, we’re gonna have an entire segment of the conference dedicated to intelligent objects.
– [Ryan] Okay.
– [Philippe] And, intelligent objects is something that we really want to accelerate because we need to have those intelligent objects, and people need to understand that they have now those resources, right, that are in the field, that they can capture data from what happening for their projects, for their product in the field. And then, start helping customers do better interesting stuff, coming up with new products. So we are gonna, I’m fairly excited about pushing that agenda, and I’m looking forward to see more intelligent spaces being built, especially in the intelligent infrastructure, smart cities. We have those, we have this, you know, 2.1 trillion dollar, 2.1 trillion dollar bill coming from the federal government that we have to spend, and I would love to for it to be spent on digital infrastructure. So, not fixing some things from the old, but, like, really preparing the U.S. economy and the U.S. infrastructure for the year to come.
– [Ryan] Yeah, absolutely. On the Topio side, what what do y’all focused on for the rest of the year? Like, what’s big priorities, things that people should be looking out for?
– [Philippe] So, the big priority is our second cohort for the Topio Academy, which begins May 28th. So, we are gonna cover everything that we’ve talked about, right? So, we are gonna cover that in, during two months program, and that starts with May 28th. And then, we have the Intelligent Infrastructure conference, which is very focused on smart city and utilities in Austin, Texas on June 6th and 7th. And then, Edge Computing World, and, also working with you guys to really make that new industry a success. I mean, we have a lot of work to do. It takes a, it takes a village.
– [Ryan] Yeah, it totally does. Aside from Edge Computing World, are there, are you going to any other events this year, or speaking at any events?
– [Philippe] Yeah, yeah. So I was, I’m not gonna be at Mobile World Congress, but I’m gonna be, I’m gonna be at Smart City, the Smart City conference in Colorado. I’m gonna be at the Sing conference. I mean, yeah, I’m attending conference almost every month, so.
– [Ryan] Oh, that’s awesome. Well, that’ll be fun. I know I’m gonna try to attend as many as I can, as well. But, last thing I wanna do is for our audience out there who wants to follow up on this conversation, learn more about Topio and what y’all have going on, stay in touch that kind of thing, what’s the best way they can do that?
– [Philippe] Well, I mean, they can reach me, right? So, email@example.com, which is one way to reach out to me. They can go and register on the website, topionetworks.com, we are kind of news turns. They can subscribe to our newsletters, as well. Yeah, and, you know, reach out. If they want to participate to the academy, it’s really where the academy, the industry come together to think about things and fix things, so, that’s one way to do it as well.
– [Ryan] Fantastic. Well, Philippe, thank you so much again for taking the time, Fantastic conversation, I know our audience is gonna get a ton of value out of this, so, thank you so much for being here.
– [Philippe] Thank you so much, Ryan, for having me. It’s always fun to discuss those type of topics.