The Internet of Things (IoT) has the potential to connect virtually anything to the internet and accelerate data-driven logistics. Everyday objects can now send, receive, process, and store information, and thus actively participate in selfsteering, event-driven logistics processes. IoT promises far-reaching payoffs for logistics providers; they can use the data from the connected objects to generate actionable insights that drive change and new solutions.

Key Developments & Implications

IoT presents an immense $1.9 trillion opportunity in logistics. However, until now only a few IoT applications in logistics have experienced widespread adoption, due to the total cost of deployment, security concerns, and an absence of standards in the fragmented logistics industry. With the global connected logistics market estimated to substantially grow to $27 billion at a CAGR of 7.6% until 2023, breakthroughs in the development of low-cost IoT networks (see Next-generation Wireless) and continually falling sensor prices will enable large-scale IoT deployments in logistics. Furthermore, early adopters will have exciting opportunities to develop new, IoT-based business models.

  • Connected warehouses can increase the transparency of all assets through the tagging of individual items, pallets, and operational equipment. These smart items can transmit information about their current task, condition, and position, enabling powerful analytics to improve planning and visibility, process efficiency and asset utilization, as well as maintenance. IoT can also drive higher levels of worker health and safety through a connected workforce concept, and may be additionally used to optimize facility management through the integration of IoT in the warehouse infrastructure.

  • Intelligent transportation solutions can increase transparency and integrity in the supply chain through innovative smart truck concepts. For example, in-vehicle telematics can collect data on movements and idle time to maximize fleet and asset utilization as well as dynamic route planning and optimization. IoT can also be used to reduce vehicle downtime via the prediction of asset failure and automated maintenance scheduling.

  • The connected consumer and the proliferation of smart homes (e.g., smart locks) will enable new IoT-based delivery concepts such as secured in-home delivery services. This can offer more visibility to the consumer and help to avoid unnecessary deliveries.

IoT in Logistics

A connect pallet can tell its owner the whereabouts and condition of their shipment. A connected truck can intelligently predict its own maintenance needs. A connected street light can sense the presence of cars and send environmental intelligence to drivers. Download this trend report to explore the many intriguing possibilities for IoT in logistics.

Questions answered in this report:

  • What is the Internet of Things, and why is it a big deal?
  • What are some of the leading practices and applications of IoT that are generating value across sectors?
  • What are some of the key use cases for IoT in the logistics industry specifically, and what will be their implications?

Talk to an Expert

Dr. Markus Kückelhaus

Vice President
Innovation & Trend Reserach
DHL Customer Solutions and Innovation

Markus Kückelhaus is heading the global research and innovation activities of Deutsche Post DHL and is in charge of the DHL flagship Innovation Center near Bonn. He joined DHL in 2012 as Director Trend Research monitoring and leveraging trends with his team that will impact the logistics industry in the future. Previously he worked as a free-lance consultant for DHL, supporting the development of a group wide innovation system and implementing strategies and business models for innovation initiatives.

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