Internet of Things (IoT) AND IT companies

internet_of_things

Communication plays a crucial role in exchange of information between us, human beings or any living being. As we evolved so as our technology and now our devices communicate and exchange information with each other. For example, our network of systems.

Now looking into the future, we see ourselves surrounded by gadgets or microchips. Not like Mobile Phones or Laptops but devices that are always with us, which monitors us, which listen to us, which speaks to us, which even communicate among themselves. These are just a few things I have mentioned and there could be lot more. This is nothing but the ‘Internet of Things’ getting to happen in our daily lives.

Why IoT:

Before, we get to know what IoT is; let us see why we need this IoT to happen in our lives.

WHY??Because we are lazy!! In this fast paced world we want to automate everything, control everything and also monitor everything in real time. So, in the future, when you start to travel back home from office your car will advise you what routes to take once you start your car. Your personal monitoring system will send an SOS message, if you are about to receive a heart attack. So, these are few things to start with. So let’s go ahead and learn more about IoT.

What is IoT:

In simple terms, imagine your washing machine talking to your Geo Locator to know your location, so that it can complete its work by the time you reach your home. Or your car which will lets its manufacturer know the problem it detected in the engine, so that he can guide you to the nearest service center. All these nothing but PAN (Personal Area Networks) just like WAN and MAN networks.

Internet of Things are devices connected to each other over the Internet. These can be any applications such as Mobile, Embedded Systems or even home applications. These applications will have the capacity to analyze the data they have collected and process to take decisions based on that. Along with this they can share this information with other applications or systems which has more analyzing capabilities.

So, Will we have a shift in technology??

No, there is no need for that, the technologies that are currently in use are enough. These include more familiar standards like Wi-Fi, low-energy Bluetooth, NFC and RFID, and some that we have probably haven’t heard of, like ZigBee, Z-Wave and 6LoWPAN. Having said that, we cannot rule out the possibility of new technologies to emerge in the future.

IoT in action:

Let us take an example to understand, John is a 45 year old male person. On a rainy day, he caught cold with a severe cough. His personal hygiene gadget warns him not to take any cold drinks or food that could worsen his condition. And it may also update his wife’s gadget about his condition, which in turn notifies her precautions she needs to keep herself safe. Also may send a request to John’s personal doctor, to fix an appointment.

Think about a refrigerator which will keep your food cool according to the climatic condition outside, which keeps your food from being frozen.

The types of devices can span a wide range of categories, from wearable to light bulbs to home appliances (like the coffee maker, washing machine, and even your car) — anything

  

So, what is in there for us as an IT company?

A paper from “IoT Analytics” reveals that IoT projects are increasingly relying on existing out-of-the-box solutions and that 29 percent of companies look to IoT cloud platforms to lead their solution development projects.
In IoT still we have a lot of work in Optimizing the communication layers, device fingerprinting and authentication, network and transport level security, Resolution and routing, Data aggregation and modeling, building resilience and reliability of these “things” and their ability to communicate when needed.

But we can mainly concentrate on analyzing the data that comes from these devices as they play a crucial role in building intelligent systems.

In the coming years, the priceless asset for any company would be “Data”. We can use “Data Analytics” to extract meaning full information from this “Data”. Billions of devices will be connected over the internet. When similar devices are connected together, they can become an intelligent system of systems. These systems can share enormous amount of data, and we can build systems that can analyze this data, using which we can improve many things, like building better products based in the data collected from devices mounted on vehicles, provide better medical services based on the data collected from the personal devices of humans and even actions based on real time updates.

The flow of this data can be like this:

The Edge nodes or the devices collect data based on Local Embedded algorithms in them. This data is fine-tuned further and is sent to the Data Aggregator for storage and analysis. On the other end the data from the Data Aggregator is analyzed by Analysts or Analytical Tools to extract information. Based on Historical Analysis of data or based from real time data we can build intelligent systems which can optimize things to great extent.

IoT Sectors may include segments like:

  • Connected Industry
  • Smart City
  • Smart Energy
  • Smart Agriculture
  • Connected Health
  • Smart Retail
  • Smart Supply Chain and others.

This would transform the world what we are seeing today. An example could be a smart traffic camera. This smart traffic camera which can monitor the roads for any accidents or traffic jams, which would communicate this data to a gateway which in turn collect data from all such smart cameras and share this to an intelligent City Traffic System. So, analyzing this data from all these cameras can help regulate traffic or re-route traffic in minutes when there is traffic congestion or an accident.

This is only one system which I have mentioned, but there can be many similar systems which can be built for other services. And imagine a service that is again built on top of this system. All these systems are built by mostly analyzing the data and intelligently processing the information and providing solutions. This is the space where companies will compete, try to prove their worthiness and we are working on Analytics related space from past years, so this is our opportunity.

Few Segments and Our Scope:

Smart City:

We already know that Indian government has taken up an initiative to build smart cities. Here are few things we can build tools or systems for:

To name a few :
Smart Traffic and Parking Systems, Smart City Monitoring system, Smart Waste Management and Water Metering Systems, Smart Bus stops etc.

Connected Industry:

With sensors, software, and hardware, the factory of the future will be completely connected.
The factories of the future will be completely connected with sensors, software and hardware, which will enable better control of manufacturing and results in being more productive.

Efficient Manufacturing based on inputs, Energy Consumption, Smart Inventory, Smart Delivery are to name few areas.

Smart Energy:

Very costly resource is energy now a days and efficient management of this is very much need at the top of this hour. Even a small disruption could cost a lot to companies. Keeping this in view, we can develop smart software that can analyze the productive and non-productive time, the load of the grid and smart devices that take over or change or distribute the load on to another grid.

We can work on historical analysis of data and even work on smart metering systems.

Connected Cars:

This is the most mature of IoT segments, where cellular type (Machine to Machine) of IoT connectivity is getting implemented for a while. In this segment most of the IoT projects focus on Monitoring and diagnosis of vehicle, fleet management (this is a hot cake!), real time decision support etc.

We have a vast range of opportunities to prove our excellence and contribute to this new emerging area of technology. Without any doubt IoT would bring a great shift in the technology sector and can bring in smart systems that optimize our lives to live to the most extent.

*Please note that there is a shorter version of this post, also published in an article in our company internal magazine long back, which was the reason this post is now being opened for public viewing.
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