Purpose – The emergence of Internet of Things (IoT) platforms in product companies opens up new data-driven business opportunities. This paper looks at the emergence of these IoT platforms from a business-model perspective. Design/methodology/approach – The study applies a mixed method with two research studies: Study I–a cluster analysis based on a quantitative survey, and Study II–case studies based on qualitative interviews. Findings – The findings reveal that there is no gradual shift in a company’s business model, but in fact three distinct and sequential patterns of business model innovations: (1) platform skimming, (2) platform revenue generation and (3) platform orchestration. Research limitations/implications – The results are subject to the typical limitations of both quantitative and qualitative studies. Practical implications – The results provide guidance to managers on how to modify the components of the business model (value proposition, value creation and/or delivery and profit equation) in order to enable platforms to advance. Social implications – As IoT platforms continue to advance, product companies achieve better performance in terms of productivity and profitability, and more easily secure competitive advantages and jobs. Originality/value – The paper makes three original contributions: (1) it is the first quantitative study on IoT platforms in product companies, (2) identifies three patterns of business model innovations and (3) offers a first process perspective for understanding the sequence of these patterns as IoT platforms advance.