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Internet of Things: what companies need to exploit IoT in business

4 Mins read
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things

Definitions, purchaser and B2B IoT utilization models, network sensors and conventions, essential framework, board and capacity information, Edge Computing, Big Data Analytics and AI.
Under the umbrella of the Internet of Things fall innovations and applications that accommodate the organization association of items and gadgets other than the PC, which trade information for the most part independently and freely from an immediate human order.

Associated protests normally have parts that fall into the accompanying classifications:

Associated protests normally have parts that fall into the accompanying classifications:
  • Sensors: cameras, microphones, buttons, barcode readers, detectors for temperature, pressure, humidity, heart rate, GPS position, movement, gyroscopes, compasses …
  • Actuators: mainly electrical switches and hydraulic valves, also combined to create robotic and automation systems.

More or less autonomous processing devices:

Internet of Things: Use Cases in Consumer Solutions

In addition to the primary benefit offered to the consumer, the use of the intelligent device for its specific purpose, the adoption of IoT technologies can allow the manufacturing company to obtain new valuable information to be exploited in the first person, to be transferred to the consumer as value. Added after the purchase of the product or even monetized through the provision of new services.

Some examples of these secondary benefits are:

  • Obtain diagnostic information on the operation of the object to improve maintenance, prevention or after a failure has occurred;
  • Obtain information on the actual use of the functions by the consumer to focus research and development of new products better;
  • Acquire data to create market analyses, sell to third parties (following the licenses of use of the products sold), and propose new products or services to the customer personalised, based on the identified needs.

Internet of Things: use cases for corporate

In the enterprise, the IoT has been used in numerous innovative use cases that, in some cases, are re-propositions of consumer technologies on a larger scale. Still, in other cases, they are specific applications of the company’s business sector in question. Some of the most prominent examples are:

  • Use of sensors on machines and production lines to optimize industrial processes, reduce costs and waste, enable predictive maintenance and improve quality;
  • Use of geographical position data of vehicle fleets in the transport of goods and people, also for the creation of new mobility services (car/bike sharing);
  • Optimization of management and maintenance costs (heating/cooling, energy consumption) of large buildings, neighbourhoods or entire cities ( smart cities ).
  • Tracking of presences in commercial spaces, for personalized and territorial marketing activities;
  • In hospitals, for monitoring patient parameters ;
  • Charging based on the actual use of some services. For example, in the insurance field, for the creation of customized policies based on the profile of actual use of vehicles or driving habits (compatibly with local privacy laws);
  • In the utility field, for the remote measurement of consumption, but also to obtain more detailed information that allows more efficient planning of resources;
  • Being able to manage a product / machine remotely, and add level of after-sales service;
  • Tracking and inventory of the entire product chain, from the procurement of raw materials to the warehouses of finished products, up to stock at the point of sale.

As in the case of consumer devices, in addition to providing new functionalities to improve the process, the acquisition of historical data and their analysis, perhaps supported by artificial intelligence systems, creates value that can be used to obtain competitive advantages but also to introduce new products and services and get to radically transform the company’s core business, for example moving from being a manufacturer of a device to providing its functionality as a service, both to business customers and directly to consumers.

Characteristics of an IoT infrastructure

The implementation of IoT technologies provides an infrastructure that can be articulated on multiple networks and systems. Each part hides critical issues that must be assessed to avoid security risks, network efficiency, uncontrolled growth of the data collected, and consequent processing and storage costs.

Typically, an infrastructure for the Internet of Things applications consists of the following parts:

  • Sensors / actuators
  • Connection infrastructure between sensors and data reception
  • Optionally, a collector and peripheral data analyzer ( Edge Computing )
  • Data collection and storage
  • Elaboration, analysis, visualization and control

Sensors and actuators in the Internet of Things

Sensors translate physical parameter measurements into electrical signals and digital information.
Among the parameters that can be measured, the most common are:

  • Temperatures
  • Pressure
  • Movement
  • Spatial orientation
  • Proximity
  • Images
  • Detection of brightness or other electromagnetic waves and radio frequencies
  • Electrical parameters (voltage, current …)
  • Sounds

On the other hand, actuators can translate a command of electrical or digital origin into action in the physical world. Whether opening a tap, starting an engine or turning on a light bulb, it is always a switch or a solenoid valve that can be controlled with an electrical impulse.

The connection infrastructure between sensors and network

The sensors can be directly connected to the IP / internet network or communicate with a central collector using different wired or wireless systems and protocols. The choice between one or the other depends on various factors, including:

  • The distance between the sensors and the collectors
  • The amount of data that needs to be transmitted over time (bandwidth)
  • The delay with which data can arrive (latency)
  • Energy consumption
  • Whether or not there is a physical connection (cable)

Communication protocols for the IoT

One of the main problems for the diffusion of the IoT is the absence of a single standard for the communication between sensors and central processing. Sometimes different protocols, standards and technologies coexist on the same network. Below we list some of the most popular.

  • AMQP (Advanced Message Queuing Protocol)
  • Bluetooth
  • Cellular data
  • CoAP (Constrained Application Protocol)
  • DDS (Data Distribution Service)
  • HomeKit
  • IoTivity
  • JSON-LD (JavaScript Object Notation for Linked Data)
  • LoRaWAN
  • MQTT (Transport Telemetry MQ)
  • Near-field communication (NFC)
  • Physical Web
  • SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition)
  • Sigfox
  • SMS
  • Thread
  • TR-069 (Technical Report 069)
  • Weave
  • Web Thing Model
  • XMPP (eXtensible Messaging and Presence Protocol)
  • Zigbee
  • Z-wave
  • 6LoWPAN

A description of the characteristics of the various protocols for the Internet of Things networks is available in this article.

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About author
I am a freelance writer and editor from Upwork. I have over 5+ years of experience in the publishing industry and have written for both local and international publications. I am a versatile writer with a keen eye for detail, and my areas of expertise include travel, food, and lifestyle. In addition to writing, I also have experience in copywriting, proofreading, and fact-checking. I am a reliable and hardworking freelancer, and I am confident that I can deliver high-quality work to my clients.
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