About 10 years ago, the Internet of Things (IoT) was a far-fetched dream that was one part reality, one part science fiction. Yes, everyone had a smartphone, but the prospects of other smart devices going mainstream were rather bleak.
Then, IoT start-ups like Nest started popping up. That was followed by huge investments into IoT from mega-tech companies like Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), which was subsequently followed by a bunch of product launches and mass consumer interest.
Now, the internet of things is everywhere; everything seems to be smart. There are smartwatches, smart TVs, smart thermostats, smart cameras, smart appliances, smart glasses, smart speakers, smart cars, so on and so forth.
This transition is still in its early stages. As AI technology improves with big investment over the next several years, the capability of these smart devices will only grow. As capability grows, so, too, will adoption rates.
Owing to this dynamic, IoT is a big growth space for many years to come. But which internet of things stocks will fare best during this secular growth period?
Here’s a list of my 3 favorite internet of things stocks to own over the next several years:
IoT Stock to Buy: Micron Technology, Inc. (MU)
The core products that chip-maker Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU) makes and sells, NAND and DRAM chips, are essentially the building blocks of the IoT universe. Without them, IoT doesn’t work.
Consequently, as IoT grows, so too will demand for MU products.
More than that, IoT growth is accompanied by even more robust growth in data. Each smart device collects multiple data points, so each new smart device on the market is producing an additional 100-plus data points. This explosion in data as a result of IoT growth will create even more robust demand for MU’s NAND and DRAM chips.
Yet, despite this favorable demand backdrop, MU stock still trades at around 5-times forward earnings.
Why? Because MU’s earnings are notoriously cyclical due to lumpy supply-demand dynamics in the comapny’s core NAND and DRAM chip markets. At any point, supply could increase by a ton, outstrip demand, and all of MU’s profits go away.
But that likely won’t happen this time around. The arrival of today’s data-driven economy has created unprecedented demand for NAND and DRAM chips. This unprecedented demand will likely overwhelm even the most dramatic supply increases. Thus, the next down-cycle will likely be largely muted relative to previous down-cycles.
All together, today’s five-times forward multiple makes no sense for Micron stock. This is a long-term internet of things winner that has a powerful demand catalysts and overly stated supply risks.
IoT Stock to Buy: Google
Anyone who knocks Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) in this era truly underestimates just how important data is today, and how much more important it will become in the future.
Knowledge is power. Companies are starting to realize this, and are doing everything they can to collect as much data as possible to make the best decisions possible. Moreover, data is the building blocks of tomorrow’s biggest technologies, like AI.
Fortunately for GOOG shareholders, Google has the most data in the world. And it isn’t even close. Just think about how many times you use Google in a day. Think about all the things you are telling Google with each search, or with each click.
Because of this robust data-set, Google is set to be a big internet of things winner over the next several years.
The company has leveraged big data to create first-in-class AI that is featured in its suite of smart home products. As a result, Google is selling a ton of smart home products.
Those smart home products collect more data and all that data feeds back into Google’s already robust data set. Google then uses this even bigger data set to create even better AI, which is then used to sell even more smart home products and collect even more data.
All together, thanks to its already massive data-set, Google is set to be a big IoT winner into the foreseeable future. GOOG stock, though, currently trades at just 25-times forward earnings, which is one of the cheaper multiples in the big-tech space.
It seems as if the market is under-valuing just how important Gogle’s data is in tomorrow’s internet of things dominated world.
IoT Stock to Buy: Intel Corporation (INTC)
Much like Micron, Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) makes the stuff which the internet of things world operates on. That makes INTC a part of the underlying fabric of IoT, which in turn guarantees the company strong growth over the next several years.
The most attractive thing about Intel stock, though, is that it is dirt-cheap considering its broad exposure to IoT.
Intel used to be this boring, dried-up PC business that operated in the low-growth personal computing market. But over the past several quarters, Intel has dramatically shifted its business from PC-centric to data-centric.
In doing so, Intel has catalyzed big-time growth throughout the company. Revenue growth last quarter was in the high single-digit range, versus a trailing five-year average revenue growth rate of just 3%.
This shift, however, doesn’t seem priced into Intel stock just yet.
Intel stock trades at just 14-times forward earnings. Not only is that anemic for a company with such broad exposure to the internet of things, but it is also anemic for a company with a consistent track record of growth and a 2% dividend yield.
All together, it appears as though Intel stock isn’t fully priced for its new data-centric growth trajectory. As such, Intel stock should be able to outperform over the next several years as the valuation normalizes to a more appropriate level considering broad IoT exposure.
Because of this dynamic, I continue to view Intel stock as one of the cheapest and least risky ways to play the IoT boom.
As of this writing, Luke Lango was long AMZN, AAPL, GOOG, MU, and INTC.