A new study recently released by Gartner has found that use of the Internet of Things is growing, and an increasing number of devices now have IoT capabilities.

According to the report, 4.9 billion connected things are expected to be in use next year, an increase of 30 percent from 2014. The number of IoT devices is believed to be on track to reach 25 billion by 2020. Gartner researchers estimated that total spending on services supported by the IoT will reach $70 billion in 2015 before rising dramatically to $263 billion in 2020.

Part of the reason connected devices have seen such a dramatic growth recently is due to the powerful force the IoT has shown itself to be in terms of business transformation. The report discovered that while the increased number of connected things is being driven by consumer applications, enterprises will account for most of the revenue in the market.

"The number of connected intelligent devices will continue to grow exponentially, giving 'smart things' the ability to sense, interpret, communicate and negotiate, and effectively have a digital 'voice,'" said Steve Prentice, Gartner fellow and vice president. "CIOs must look for opportunities to create new services, usage scenarios and business models based on this growth."

Researchers also noted that traditional, mainstream products will start to be reinvented to include computing capabilities and provide them with a digital voice. The enhancement of objects once viewed as passive products will completely change their value propositions and create new services and business models. The study found that by 2020, the three industries with the highest level of IoT use will be utilities, manufacturing and government.

Security a major part of IoT expansion 
​A major point touched on by the report is the security repercussions of the IoT, as dozens of new platform options are brought into enterprise digital security architecture. Increased use of the IoT will also bring new security standards to each industry individually and provide a new view of applications. These changes will cause IT leaders to create a more comprehensive technological approach to IoT risk and security going forward. According to the study, 20 percent of companies will have digital security services devoted to protecting business initiatives using IoT devices and services in the next two years.

"The IoT highlights the tight linkages between information security, information technology security, operational technology security and physical security like never before," a statement from Gartner noted. "Executives now face a decision regarding the future of security in their enterprise and who governs, manages and operates it."