Bullish on IoT

Voice&Data - - COVER STORY - Adeesh Sharma


A bet­ter sys­tem can be built around the grow­ing ecosys­tem of med­i­cal apps that can lever­age the bil­lion mo­bile phones around the globe that can pick data through sen­sors placed on the body and re­lay the same to health cen­ters.

One game chang­ing ap­pli­ca­tion could be ease of find­ing sub­jects for clin­i­cal tri­als for a num­ber of rea­sons: time, ge­og­ra­phy, etc. By hav­ing peo­ple opt-in with their ex­ist­ing con­nected de­vices, med­i­cal re­search cen­ters can get a cross sec­tion of users across dif­fer­ent, so­cial, and en­vi­ron­men­tal sub­sec­tions. It has the po­ten­tial to se­ri­ously dis­rupt the med­i­cal re­search in­dus­try in a way we’ve never seen be­fore.

Oil and Gas In­dus­try

The global oil and gas in­dus­try’s hunt for hy­dro­car­bons in in­creas­ingly re­mote, ex­treme en­vi­ron­ments is driv­ing the need for IoT so­lu­tions within the in­dus­try. The num­ber of de­vices with cel­lu­lar or satel­lite con­nec­tiv­ity de­ployed in oil and gas ap­pli­ca­tions around the world was 423,000 at the end of 2013, which is es­ti­mated to rise by 21.4% to 1.12 mn by 2018.

The tight­en­ing of reg­u­la­tions in the oil and gas in­dus­try, cou­pled with ac­ci­dents and cy­ber­at­tacks is driv­ing the shift to­wards In­ter­net of Things so­lu­tions. Apart from op­er­a­tional ef­fi­ciency & re­mote col­lab­o­ra­tion IoT will bring more vis­i­bil­ity in op­er­a­tions in chal­leng­ing en­vi­ron­ments such as ul­tra­deep­wa­ter drilling.


The in­creas­ing de­mand for cloud ser­vices shall push de­mand for servers and dat­a­cen­ters. Also, the con­tin­ued re­duc­tion in the cost of man­u­fac­tur­ing semi­con­duc­tors makes it fea­si­ble to in­stall them on a range of ev­ery­day de­vices that were pre­vi­ously un­con­nected. In its In­ter­net of Things (IoT) 2013 to 2020 Mar­ket Anal­y­sis re­port, IDC es­ti­mates that spend­ing on IoT tech­nol­ogy and ser­vices will touch $8.9 tn by 2020, or a 7.9% CAGR. A lot of growth in the next few years will come from price-sen­si­tive emerg­ing mar­kets, which will con­tinue to pres­sure mar­gins of com­po­nent sup­pli­ers. The mo­bile de­vices shall con­tinue to evolve through bet­ter func­tion­al­ity and ex­pe­ri­ence as pro­ces­sors within them shall op­er­ate at higher speeds and con­sume lesser power. Emerg­ing prod­uct cat­e­gories like 3D print­ers, health and fit­ness de­vices, smart watches, ul­tra HD tele­vi­sion dis­plays, and smart ther­mostats will see the strong­est growth along­with smart­phones and tablets.

Spend­ing on smart grids and in­tel­li­gent me­ter­ing ap­pli­ca­tions is ex­pected to see par­tic­u­larly strong growth. The au­to­mo­tive in­dus­try shall con­tinue to fuel growth in semi­con­duc­tor tech be­cause the con­sump­tion of elec­tronic com­po­nents for safety, in­fo­tain­ment, nav­i­ga­tion, and fuel ef­fi­ciency con­tin­ues to in­crease.


In-store sen­sors such as Blue­tooth bea­cons can track smart­phones through­out the store and record path-to-pur­chase data that can later be used to op­ti­mize store lay­outs. They can also be used to tar­get shop­pers as they tra­verse the aisles, pro­vid­ing con­tex­tual in­for­ma­tion and of­fers as they go. And this ex­tends to check­out, where shop­pers can use their NFC-equipped con­tact­less cards to pay for goods.

At the re­tail­ers’ end, through the use of smart wear­ables such as Google Glass, store man­agers could get re­ports on the go as they scan the store, com­par­ing each de­part­ment’s plan ver­sus ac­tual sales. They could also scan bar codes to get ex­tended prod­uct in­for­ma­tion as well as in­ven­tory po­si­tions. At home you could imag­ine press­ing a but­ton on the wall of the laun­dry room when­ever you run out of de­ter­gent so a new bag is au­to­mat­i­cally or­dered at your fa­vorite on­line store for home de­liv­ery. Such smart switches could be con­fig­ured for dif­fer­ent prod­ucts and placed around the home for au­tomat­ing other mun­dane tasks. Con­nect­ing home au­to­ma­tion to eCom­merce sites could be the next wave of re­tail­ing.


Fac­to­ries and plants that are con­nected to the In­ter­net are more ef­fi­cient, pro­duc­tive, and smarter than their non-con­nected coun­ter­parts. The in­crease of sen­sors and read­ers across the man­u­fac­tur­ing and dis­tri­bu­tion chain can stream­line and max­i­mize prac­tices, greatly en­hanc­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity. IoT can pro­vide endto-end vis­i­bil­ity across man­u­fac­tur­ing op­er­a­tions. Au­to­mo­tive com­pa­nies are al­ready us­ing IoT-en­abled tech­nol­ogy to pre­dict faults, quickly re­spond to main­te­nance con­di­tions and take proac­tive ac­tion. Also, by in­te­grat­ing fac­tory-floor op­er­a­tions with core busi­ness pro­cesses can op­ti­mize pro­duc­tion and real-time up­dates from ma­chine data can be used to gain pre­dic­tive an­a­lyt­ics to au­to­mate parts and con­sum­able or­der­ing to max­i­mize rev­enue.

For in­stance, imag­ine a truck with some 50-100 sen­sors, if con­nected and with ge­olo­ca­tion, you can see traf­fic jams in ad­vance and do rerout­ing. If you see a prob­lem with a truck you can proac­tively sched­ule main­te­nance. Con­nected lo­gis­tics ca­pa­bil­ity en­ables man­agers to man­age large de­pots and hubs. All this im­proves cus­tomer ser­vice. With new vis­i­bil­ity into man­u­fac­tur­ing, com­pa­nies are cap­tur­ing data and us­ing it to re­duce down­time, for pre­dic­tive main­te­nance, build­ing an­a­lyt­ics, and en­abling busi­ness so­lu­tions. Like­wise, by in­stalling sen­sors and ac­tu­a­tors at dif­fer­ent points in an as­sem­bly line, man­agers can in­stantly find out the sta­tus of pro­duc­tion. They are able to share that in­for­ma­tion and data with co-work­ers in other de­part­ments. vndedit@cy­ber­me­dia.co.in

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