HWM (Malaysia) - - SMB - SPECIAL -

NEC Cor­po­ra­tion of Malaysia re­cently held its In­no­va­tive So­lu­tions Fair 2015 in Kuala Lumpur. The event show­cased fu­ture tech­nol­ogy, such as por­ta­ble DNA An­a­lyzer, to bar­code-free POS sys­tem, to smarter tran­sit sys­tems. At the event, we had the plea­sure to sit down with Shinya Kukita, Chief En­gi­neer of Global Busi­ness Unit at NEC Cor­po­ra­tion, and talk about the ubiq­ui­tous, but sel­dom un­der­stood topic of the In­ter­net of Things (IoT).

Kukita ex­plained that IoT, like many of the buzz­words that came be­fore it, are ac­tu­ally syn­er­gis­tic tech­nol­ogy. For ex­am­ple, he said that Big Data would not be pos­si­ble with­out crowd com­put­ing, and that IoT is an ex­pan­sion of Big Data. He splits IoT into three cat­e­gories: In­dus­try IoT, Con­sumer IoT, Open IoT. In­dus­try IoT is said to be the most ma­ture. Here, big ma­chine man­u­fac­tur­ers in­stall var­i­ous sen­sors through­out the life­time of their prod­ucts for var­i­ous pur­poses, in­clud­ing main­te­nance and mon­i­tor­ing. Th­ese im­ple­men­ta­tions tend to be pro­pri­etary and closed looped.

Con­sumer IoT in­cludes smart wear­ables, in­tel­li­gent re­frig­er­a­tors, and con­sumer prod­ucts of that na­ture. It is driven by how much con­sumers are will­ing to pay, and is more of­ten than not, a com­mer­cial en­deavor.

Open IoT, on the other hand, is the tech­nol­ogy that is used to build smart cities.

Kukita ex­plained that Open IoT is the tech­nol­ogy that is used to add so­cial value to so­lu­tions. In this ver­sion of IoT, the sen­sors are con­nected to an IoT net­work and goes through Big Data anal­y­sis. The wis­dom gained will then be used to en­hance the var­i­ous so­cial so­lu­tions that in­clude util­i­ties like elec­tric­ity and wa­ter, trans­porta­tion sys­tems, se­cu­rity, or so­cial in­clu­sion types of ac­tiv­i­ties such as health­care or other ap­pli­ca­tions.

When talk­ing about the fu­ture of IoT, he said that the de­mand for IoT will drive the need for new net­work tech­nolo­gies. This is be­cause IoT will need a new com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nol­ogy to reach its full po­ten­tial. He spec­u­lated that 5G could very well be this tech­nol­ogy; nev­er­the­less, the so­lu­tion must be ded­i­cated to IoT.

IoT will also drive the de­mand for not only data sci­en­tists but also do­main ex­perts. Th­ese pro­fes­sion­als are needed and are highly de­sir­able as IoT ma­tures.

Build­ing a new city with a smart in­fra­struc­ture, said Kukita, is an at­trac­tive prospect. It would be a much eas­ier task. How­ever, turn­ing a liv­ing city such as Kuala Lumpur, an in­hab­ited and well-es­tab­lished city into a smart city would be more ben­e­fi­cial. At the same time, this will re­quire a lot of ef­fort on all fronts and that a lot of the old struc­tures of the city must first be main­tained and im­proved.

Shinya Kukita, Chief En­gi­neer of Global Busi­ness Unit at NEC Cor­po­ra­tion.

Kukita ad­dresses a packed hall on the sub­ject of IoT.

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