A recent report about the "future Internet" by the UK's national innovation agency, Technology Strategy Board, has some illuminating information about the emerging Internet of Things. It suggests that converged services and a brokerage model, amongst other things, will define the future Web. The report is available as a free PDF download, but as it's 59 pages long we'll summarize some key points in this post.

The report defines the future Internet as "an evolving convergent Internet of things and services that is available anywhere, anytime as part of an all-pervasive omnipresent socio-economic fabric, made up of converged services, shared data and an advanced wireless and fixed infrastructure linking people and machines to provide advanced services to business and citizens."

The report goes on to state that "the Internet was initially about communications and then a means of delivering services. The next stage in this progression is a convergence of services, together with massively shared data." One example it gives is health services that are "designed around the individual, specified by the patient and clinical practitioner and delivered as part of a brokered set of services."

Convergence is a key term used throughout the report, the crux being that data will increasingly come from many sources and that services will need to mix and filter that data.

A big opportunity for entrepreneurs in this future Internet will be to become a service broker:

"A new class of service provider will emerge that will create and market service elements that can be applied across multiple sectors. These elements will be aggregated together in any number of ways by a 'broker', to provide the end user with contextually aware applications and decision support services."

The whole report is worth diving into, but the following selection of graphs gives a good summary of the key points.