Over the next few years, hundreds if not thousands of “connected devices” will hit the market, many with open APIs. Often the capabilities of these products are dramatically improved by third-party apps. A great example is the Philips Hue, a high-quality connected lighting system which has a very mediocre mobile/web interface, but which has an API that others are exploiting to make better, more powerful interfaces.
I think there is an incredible opportunity for mobile and web developers to act as the connective tissue between these products and make them better with apps. These apps can be monetized by selling them in the App Store or Google Play, and/or by charging monthly fees for valuable ongoing services.
The Internet of Things will move quickly, and for mobile/web developers who want to play a role in the growing industry, now’s the time to get started.
Bio: Zach is CEO of Spark, an Internet of Things start-up based in the twin cities. Over the last year, we have launched a very successful Kickstarter campaign (raising nearly $600K in crowdfunding), shipped tens of thousands of products, grown our company to 10 people, and raised VC investment from the bay area.