Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how Internet of Things (IoT) technology can enable highly distributed elevator equipment servicing by using remote-monitoring technology to facilitate a shift from traditional corrective maintenance (CM) and time-based maintenance (TBM) to more predictive, condition-based maintenance (CBM) in order to achieve various benefits. Design/methodology/approach: Literature review indicates that CBM has advantages over conventional CM and TBM from a theoretical perspective, but it depends on continuous monitoring enhancement via advanced IoT technology. An in-depth case study was carried out to provide practical evidence that IoT enables elevator firms to achieve CBM. Findings: From a theoretical perspective, the CBM of elevators makes business sense. The challenges lie in data collection, data analysis and decision making in real-world business contexts. The main findings of this study suggest that CBM can be commercialized via IoT in the case of elevators and would improve the safety and reliability of equipment. It would, thus, make sense from technological, process and economic perspectives. Practical implications: Our longitudinal real-world case study demonstrates a practical way of making the CBM of elevators widespread. Integrating IoT and other advanced technology would improve the safety and reliability of elevator equipment, prolong its useful life, minimize inconvenience and business interruptions due to equipment downtime and reduce or eliminate major repairs, thus greatly reducing maintenance costs. Originality/value: The main contribution of this paper lies in the empirical demonstration of the benefits and challenges of CBM via IoT relative to conventional CM and TBM in the case of elevators. The authors believe that this study is timely and will be valuable to firms working on similar research or commercialization strategies.