The Internet of Things (Iot) and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) have made it a long way in the past several years. In fact, according to many analysts, trillions of dollars are at stake as IIoT rolls out over the next decade. But, is the potentially multi-trillion dollar trend living up to the hype?
It could be many more years until certain industries reach the levels described in the hype. Here are the industries you should keep your eye on when it comes to IIoT technology.
IoT and IIoT widely encompass many concepts, technologies, and products, but they can generally be described as:
- Systems that contain wired or wirelessly connected components that relay data that can be analyzed or used to control an output of the system
- Networks that allow for automated information exchange between two devices
- Visions where any and all systems are connected to gather masses of data that will lead to overall improved performance, insights, and control
As of 2018, we most commonly see IoT being used for location tracking, remote monitoring, and preventative maintenance. Yet, for IIoT, the most common application is preventive maintenance. Many of these IIoT systems report back to a control interface and are not completely automated control loops that are self-evaluating or self-improving.
Certain industries stand out when looking at IIoT. We looked at trends that will progress through the end of 2018 into 2019, and we asked the following three questions:
1. What Industries Will Be Most Affected by Iot Solutions?
According to BI Intelligence, the manufacturing industry and the transportation and warehousing industry have received the highest amount of investment in IoT to date. These investments, totaling $230B between the two industries over the past few years, will continue to drive impressive progress in the development of IoT solutions
2. Who Will Be the Key Players in IIoT Solutions in 2019?
We’re currently witnessing a race to capture the IIoT market. AT&T is collaborating with Honeywell, Verizon offers a machine-to-machine (M2M) management platform called ThingSpace, and startups like Uptake Technologies are raising absurd amounts of capital to compete with existing analytics giants. Uptake alone has raised $218M since 2015, and it specializes in analytics of complex data sets.
Nearly all the corporate giants you would expect to have a stake in the race are putting serious resources behind their efforts. GE offers Predix, an end-to-end Industrial IoT platform, and it has incorporated capabilities like Predix Edge to allow for edge computing within the platform. Siemens offers their own Industrial IoT platform called MindSphere, and Bosch is also getting in on the action by offering their IoT suite publicly available on AWS Marketplace. Further, Schneider Electric developed WonderWare, and SAP offers Hana.
We expect that through 2019, we’ll see more partnerships develop, offering cross-compatibility between the many platforms available today.
3. What Further Developments in IIoT Can We Expect in the Near Future?
Security will continue to be a major focus for all providers and users of IIoT. In a recent publication, Steve Watson, CEO of VTO Labs, explains, “Security and specifically the ability to detect compromised nodes, together with collecting and preserving evidence of an attack or malicious activities, have emerged as a priority in the successful deployment of IoT networks.” This ability to detect and preserve evidence of a cyber-attack will not only need to occur through edge computing, but it will also need to maintain its integrity with interoperability of different systems that are linked together.
Given the amount of investment we’re seeing in the manufacturing, transportation and warehousing industries, we expect to see many breakthroughs in both cybersecurity for IIoT and interoperability between the many IIoT platforms.
Looking onward through 2019, we can expect to see more partnerships between major sensor providers and leading network providers. For example, take the AT&T Honeywell collaboration we saw in 2018. With more interoperability and collaboration, 2019 may be the year we see the major breakthroughs in IIoT we’ve been expecting.
Written by Taylor Welsh, technology writer/engineer at AX Control, Inc.