The Internet of Things represents the following step towards the digitalization of our society and economy, where the objects and people are interconnected through communication networks and they inform about their situation and/or the environment. According to a study of the European Commission, the market value of the IoT in the EU is expected to surpass the billions of euros in 2020.
In March 2015, the European Commission released an Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation (AIOTI) in order to support the creation of an innovative European ecosystem, fostered by the industry of the Internet of Things. In May 2015, a strategy of Digital Single Market (DSM) will be adopted. The strategy of DSM includes elements that take Europe a step forward in the acceleration of the development of the Internet of Things. In particular, the strategy remarks the need for avoiding the fragmentation and fostering the inter-operability for the IoT to reach its greatest potential.
In order to satisfy the needs of the strategy of DSM and to inform the future policy, the European Commission published in April 2016 the working document “To Promote the Internet of Things in Europe”. This document is part of the initiative “Digitizing European Industry” (DEI) and specifies the EU’s vision on the IoT, which is based on three main points: a prosperous IoT ecosystems, an IoT approach focused in the human being and a single market for the IoT.
In addition to the political initiatives, the EU has established concrete objectives of investigation and innovation in the IoT within the framework of the current programme Horizon2020.
The category Internet of Things (IoT) intends to add value to the European development related to the new technologies that will allow to improve the competitiveness of the EU in this sector and the increase of the use of TIC’s in the society.
The most important eligibility criteria are the following: