IoT: what it is and how it is changing our world
Expect the unexpected.
Prepare to adapt.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the greatest innovations of our time.
It is a network of physical objects embedded with sensors and other technologies that connect and exchange data with other devices over the internet. These devices range from ordinary household objects (such as cooking appliances, thermostats, air conditioners, washing machines, security systems, etc.), to sophisticated industrial tools.
Industrial IoT (IIoT) refers to the use of devices connected to cloud technologies in industrial settings in order to achieve a new automation layer, improving efficiency and profitability.
Unlock business value
While IoT becomes more widespread, organizations are capitalizing on the huge business value it has to offer. With IoT technology they can:
+ Derive data-driven insights to better manage the business
+ Increase operations efficiency and productivity
+ Follow new business models
+ Create new revenue streams
IoT leverages machine learning algorithms to analyze a great amount of data, identify equipment anomalies, send alerts and trigger counter measures. All that is accessible from cloud platforms that allow businesses to monitor KPIs, statistics and other information enhancing their existing internal processes such as customer service, supply chains, financial services and human resources.
The following are some common IoT applications:
- Quality monitoring of products and machines:
IoT devices can continuously monitor products, to identify quality defects, and machines, to ensure a good performance and trigger service calls for preventive maintenance.
- Tracking and ring-fencing of physical assets:
Businesses can determine their asset location in real time and make sure that high-value assets are protected from theft.
- Monitoring human health and safety:
IoT wearables allow individuals to better understand their own health, they enable doctors to remotely monitor their patients and give companies the possibility to check environmental conditions for the safety of their employees, especially useful when they work in hazardous conditions.
Industries that can benefit from IoT
Transportation and Logistics
Thanks to the data collected by IoT sensors, fleets of trucks, cars, ships, or trains carrying inventory can be rerouted depending on weather conditions, driver availability or vehicle availability. Sensors also monitor the inventory itself, which can be very important for companies dealing with food, plants and medicines as they can receive alerts if the temperature drops or rises too much.
IoT sensors can check equipment for accuracy and send alerts when they detect anomalies, which enables manufacturers to implement proactive maintenance, reduce operating costs, improve asset performance management and gain competitive advantage.
Apart from applying IoT to production lines, by using IoT sensors automotive companies can detect failures in vehicles on the road, so that technicians can alert drivers with details about the issues and recommendations on what to do.
Retail companies leverage IoT technologies to improve customer experience, optimize supply chain , manage inventory, and reduce operational costs. For example, smart shelves with weight sensors can trigger alerts if inventory is running low and beacons can highlight targeted offers for a better customer experience.
IoT government-owned assets can notify people about interruption of services such as water or power and help improve recovery from outages.
IoT can be used to track hospital assets (eg. wheelchairs) to know their location, and to ensure safety and proper usage.
The impact of COVID on IoT
With Covid we have been forced to limit our trips, to stay at home as much as possible and to work remotely. Instead of moving around to get information, we had to find a way of bringing data to us.
That is exactly the job of IoT. Because of the pandemic, IoT has seen its applications quickly spreading across all industries, and companies have realized how IoT devices can boost efficiency and innovation at every stage of their processes, improving productivity and enabling whole new ways of working.
Move-X is a division of Move Solutions, dedicated to the design of IoT devices. We help companies optimize production processes, supply chains, services and infrastructures; we support them in managing energy-saving public lighting, detecting air quality, and implementing more intelligent and functional irrigation systems and much more.
Many applications, one result: helping businesses use their resources more efficiently.
Learn more about our MAMWLE module for your IoT project.