More than every third company in Germany uses remote-controlled devices or systems via the Internet. 36 percent of companies with at least ten employees used this so-called "Internet of Things" last year, as the Federal Statistical Office announced on Wednesday. This technology – in which the virtual and real worlds grow together – is used more frequently than the European average. The EU average is 29 percent. These technologies are used most frequently in Austria (51 percent), Slovenia (49 percent), Finland (40 percent) and Sweden (40 percent).

The Internet of Things refers to interconnected devices and systems that are often referred to as intelligent or smart. They collect and exchange data and can be monitored or remotely controlled via the Internet. "Companies in Germany use security technologies networked via the Internet particularly frequently," the statisticians determined. These include, for example, intelligent alarm systems, smoke detectors, door locks and security cameras. These are used by 21 percent of companies, which corresponds to the EU average.

Devices networked via the Internet are also used relatively frequently for energy management (Germany eleven percent, EU nine) and for recording the maintenance requirements of machines (Germany nine percent, EU seven). Other areas of application include logistics management (Germany six percent, EU six), monitoring and controlling production processes (Germany five percent, EU five) and tracking customer activities (Germany three percent, EU four).

The application in Germany is slowed down by the fact that there is no nationwide supply of gigabit-capable Internet connections.

According to a study by the credit insurer Euler Hermes, small and medium-sized companies are slowing down in certain regions because companies with weak Internet connections could work less effectively.

This prevents the implementation of important new applications such as the "Internet of Things".