Chris Medina has been embracing disruptive technologies throughout his career, starting as a stockbroker just as electronic trading was completely transforming global financial markets, then moving into the fast-paced world of media and entertainment, helping build digital businesses as the Internet grew back in the “dot.com” day. From leadership positions at PrimeStar, DirectTV and Dish, working in IT, R&D and product development, Medina became part of the Consumer Electronics revolution working with Best Buy as the IT Director of Digital Content, Mobile and Connections, then moved into martech working with Epsilon in the digital retail space.
We caught up with Medina as part of our ongoing series featuring IoT Innovators and he generously shared his vision for the future of Smart Cities and IoT generally with us.
What drew you to IoT?
It is the next leap in the 4th Industrial Revolution and it has proven to be easily adapted and normalized to the point that without it, life satisfaction is impacted. IoT will bring about a greater satisfaction in social and behavioral experiences that will become part of everyday life.
When were you first introduced to IoT?
About 8yrs ago when we started to learn more about artificial intelligence and big data, that’s when software companies started to pull away from digital transformation and focused software efforts on machine to machine communication and learning. Use cases of its success and impact on economic growth quickly followed. Now that 5G has the capacity to expand that data transfer capability the next generation will ‘talk’ or communicate with everything in their surroundings and even within themselves.
What was your first IoT project?
Strategizing the eco-system at Clovity that now has become the differentiator in the market with our IoT accelerator product called CSensorNet. Since inception, CSensorNet has evolved with the IoT capabilities in the market but was not end to end. Fast forward to today and after our hard work and dedication, we have simplified a complex solution into a complete ease of deployment product, something we call “Edge to Experience.” From Sensor to Digital experience, our eco-system is now complete and highly manageable.
What are you doing/working on today?
As Chief Strategy Officer I am constantly looking for how Clovity and our solutions best align with our verticals and or problems that can be solved with data interoperability, always with some social or societal impact in mind. That said, I am working on making cities smart by aligning with those cities who are in various stages of IoT deployment. Second to that I am helping our company ‘white-label’ our product so that hardware providers can now have a software ‘plug-in’ to give their clients an Edge to Experience solution. Lastly, I am working to further diversify our product roadmap. Our solution is expanding and has served the Retail, Financial Services, Industrial, Telco, Agricultural and now Smart Cities (Public Sector) verticals.
What are your predictions for IoT?
By 2025: 5 Billion Connected People, $4 Trillion in Revenue Opportunity, 25+Million Apps, 25+Billion embedded and intelligent systems, 50 Trillion GBs of data.
Where do you see the most value being created?
The price and scale of the 5G network will make IoT concepts that haven’t been tried a possibility, (think remote nationwide surgeries with Virtual Reality and IoT Robots performing the surgery based on real time data). the technology and price have now come into parity thus pushing once again boundaries and enabling innovation.
What are the most inspiring/meaningful IoT initiatives you’ve seen?
anything health related, one such example is in a client partner of Clovity’s, a west coast company called Kenzen. With Clovity’s help, and in partnership with Gore (makers of Gore-Tex) Kenzen deployed a small, flexible device that helps you better understand the users’ physiology. Worn during the work shift for workers in distressed or high heat or extreme weather conditions, users can receive personalized health insights and monitored notifications to help you stay safe in the most strenuous scenarios.
Is there anything that you would like to see change i.e. regulations, policies, etc. in the current way the development of IoT initiatives/solutions are undertaken?
Clovity is part of a standards organization for IoT and we are striving to create a common nomenclature for IoT deployments so that with our platform we can accelerate the ease of deployments. As companies start to take on IoT, they will use and hopefully adopt those common terms and practices to deploy.
In your opinion, what is the biggest risk associated with IoT?
The biggest risk in any situation when dealing with mass amounts of data both at rest and in flight is security. Clovity has partnered with military grade security provider Dispersive Networks to protect data from the edge all the way to cloud. It is a risk not to include any high-grade security capability in your IoT plans early and up front.
What is one piece of advice that you would offer a business leader that is interested in IoT?
Look at Clovity’s accelerator program that can get you up and running with Azure quickly and the ability to easily add edge devices and quickly start seeing your data in visualization form. the message is, START somewhere. Your data is out there telling you things that if you don’t start with some type of pilot or accelerator, you will spend most of your time trying to figure out COTS vs “Build-your-own” and your competition will pass you up. Use accelerators as a starting point and build out from there.
Rocket Wagon Venture Studios is proud to sponsor this series on Enterprise IoT and IIoT Innovators. We will be profiling a different personality each week. Our innovators include highly accomplished business minds and thought leaders in the field of IoT and IIoT, including CEOs, CSOs, and CTOs of IoT companies of the highest caliber, revealing common challenges, risks, trends, and much more.
Arti Loftus is an experienced Information Technology specialist with a demonstrated history of working in the research, writing, and editing industry with many published articles under her belt.
Original published in The Smart City by Arti Loftus on August 22, 2019 and can be seen at https://www.smartcitysentinel.com/news/articles/443055-smart-cities-be-key-better-quality-life-all.htm