October 26, 2017 - Across three rows, with laptops and smartphones in hands sit nearly 40 young men and women from a generation whose only recollection of the last great technological shift was a time when they could order the newest Harry Potter book online and when Apple announce the iPhone. Students at Georgia State, most them about 20 years old, joined their regular Tuesday, Computer Science class at 1:00 pm eager to learn about what is undoubtedly the next great technology era of our time – the Internet of Things.
By the year 2020, it is predicted that there will be over 50 billion connected devices. This statistic has been tracked for the last three years and is the barometer for what’s known as the fast growing IoT industry. As Steve Latham, chief executive officer and founder of Banyan Hills Technologies explained to GSU students, “the Internet of Things, or IoT as it’s called, is nothing more than the ability to connect any device with an on and off switch to the internet or each other.”
Building a business and riding the rails of IoT
Students not only learned a great deal about the Internet of Things from Steve and during the conversation, but they also learned what it takes to start a company and become an entrepreneur. Steve shared his story and experience as chief technology officer of the Entertainment division at NCR Corporation. Through the knowledge he attained throughout his career, and in working with various customers, each having large fleets of kiosks and self-service devices, all of which are IoT endpoints themselves, he too realized what a tremendous opportunity there was by helping to connect and manage IoT devices. Steve talked to the students about how he built his business and a product around IoT; and how he continues to look for talent and experts that understand how to build and implement solutions in this area.
The future is more than bright—it’s connected
The students walked away not only with a deeper understanding of the Internet of Things, but optimistic about the types of jobs and opportunities they will find as the Internet of Things begins to mature and change our personal lives.
As one student said, “Having to hear Steve Latham’s presentation on IoT opened my eyes on how the future will mostly rely on enabled devices.”
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, employment for software developers is projected to grow 17 percent from 2015 to 2024, and at a much faster pace than the average for other jobs. Contributing to this growth is the increasing demand for software solutions. And with more and more IoT devices comes the need for software to monitor, manage and maintain these devices so businesses can operate more efficiently in a connected world.
Another student perfectly captured Steve’s validation of this trend when he said, “The greatest two sources of revenue growth in the IoT market will be from IoT applications investment and services.”
Making a connection…
While the Internet of Things is all about connecting devices and information, Steve has always been about connecting ideas and fostering an innovate and entrepreneurial spirit in others. His time at GSU accomplished that and then some! Just read what students had to say about Steve, Banyan, IoT and the industry. It is an exciting time and we all are excited for tomorrow’s innovators, inventors and creators.
“I really enjoyed the presentation by Mr. Steve Latham on Tuesday. I enjoyed his enthusiasm and passion for what he was doing…”
“I honestly felt inspired and motivated after hearing Mr. Latham speak. Recently I began to wonder what it would feel like to accomplish something so large and encompassing.”
“Near the end of the lecture, our professor joked on how Mr. Latham could be the “Steve Jobs” of IoT and that made sense to me.”
“At the beginning of the year, I had little understanding of IoT and brushed it off as another branch of computer science. However, because of Mr. Latham’s presentation, I am genuinely interested in pursuing a career in that field.”
“All in all, Steve’s presentation was wonderful. I enjoyed everything that he shared with us. I plan on reaching out to him about visiting the company and possibly job opportunities.”
“I enjoyed Latham’s presentation, because he is an entrepreneur and provided our class with his rise to the top. I believe that Banyan Hills Technologies will become very big in the future, and I may even hope to work for him.”
I’ve been working at Banyan Hills Technologies for just over a year now, but have seen the company grow over the past four years. It’s truly a gift to work for this company, and it doesn’t surprise me in the least that after hearing Steve speak for an hour, so many want to come work at Banyan.