Since the launch of Malaysia’s Internet of Things (IoT) Strategic Framework in 2015, the country’s journey to become a Regional IoT hub has been slow and riddled with challenges. The journey has taken many turns, with high ambitions often outpacing tangible action and real-world progress. This post will explore the issues, efforts, and future prospects of IoT adoption in Malaysia.

Firstly, it’s worth noting the lack of a dedicated agency to monitor and guide the development and implementation of the IoT strategy. Without specific action items, budgets, and oversight, the strategic framework has remained largely theoretical. This lack of direction and focus has hindered the country’s ambitions, creating a nebulous path forward for IoT.

The issue resurfaced in 2018 when Malaysia launched the Industry 4wrd policy, aimed at accelerating the digital transformation of the manufacturing sector through the use of Industrial Revolution 4.0 technologies, including IoT. Yet, even this move was not enough to speed up the pace of IoT growth.

The two-year-long Covid-19 lockdown revealed significant gaps in Malaysia’s digital landscape. Despite efforts to transform, it became clear that a large part of the country still grapples with limited digital and Internet access. This discrepancy has posed a substantial challenge to widespread IoT adoption.

There are several factors that have contributed to the slow growth of IoT in Malaysia. Awareness about the potential benefits and applications of IoT is still lacking, impeding its adoption. In addition, the country faces a talent gap in IoT, with a shortage of skilled professionals capable of implementing and managing IoT solutions.

Lastly, a low-risk mindset is prevalent, hindering the willingness of businesses and organizations to invest in and adopt new technologies like IoT. A more open mindset, willingness to take calculated risks, and proper planning of IoT solutions could spur the growth of this technology.

Despite these challenges, there’s reason for optimism. The current situation indicates that the Malaysian IoT market is still in its infancy, presenting significant growth opportunities. With the right interventions and capacity building efforts, the country could harness this untapped potential.

To truly harness the power of IoT, Malaysia needs a concerted effort to increase awareness, invest in talent development, encourage a more risk-tolerant mindset, and provide the necessary infrastructure for IoT deployment. If done right, Malaysia has the potential to overcome its current challenges and become a significant player in the regional IoT ecosystem.

To conclude, the journey towards IoT adoption in Malaysia may be slower than desired, but it is not without potential. With the right approach and commitment, the country can rise to meet the challenges and become a thriving hub for IoT innovation and development.

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