There are plenty of good ideas out there for using the Internet of Things but, without integration, many will fail.
Without integration, IoT can never reach its full potential. According to Forrester, almost half of companies (44%) say that integrating enterprise and IoT data is one of their biggest challenges. But, if you get it right, your good ideas can take off, bringing in both new business models and revenues.
A great example is one of our customers who manufactures and sells blinds. Its exterior Venetian blinds are used to naturally control the heat and glare from sunlight in many residential and business buildings. But there was a problem: When hailstorms hit, the blinds were extremely vulnerable to damage, leading to costly, time-consuming insurance claims.
Our customer wanted to solve this by using IoT. The idea was to take real-time meteorological data from the country’s leading weather service, and use it to trigger an IoT alert response in sensors built into the blinds.
It works like this: A hailstorm is detected, IoT data communicates with an edge device installed in the hardware, the blinds go up, and damage is avoided. Happy customers. Happy insurers.
This all happens though an IoT platform, which enables the integration of sensors and data to produce the alerts and actions. If the weather data was not integrated, there would be no alerts. If there are no alerts, the hailstones would wreak their usual havoc!
Why is integration so important?
The IoT market is estimated to grow substantially between now and 2025, despite setbacks due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Companies have “got” the hardware bit of IoT – the ability to collect a critical mass of IoT device data and then transmit it to a local or cloud-based processing hub. Where they begin to struggle is putting that data to action. According to a recent study by Beecham Research, 70% of respondents struggle to integrate IoT solutions into their existing workflows.
And this is where integration come to play. For improving operational efficiencies and increasing production quality, integrating the IoT data with enterprise applications and processes is imperative. Integration is also crucial to improving customer experience and innovating new products and services – hence creating new revenue streams. Connecting IoT sensors in your products with ERP and billing system can enable you to sell these products via a consumption-based model or provide new services to your customers.
End-to-end IoT business solutions are composed of different technologies that need to be properly integrated to work together. And that is challenging. Variety of IoT devices, applications and systems, heterogeneous data models and communication protocols increase the complexity and require more than just basic built-in capabilities provided by most of the IoT platforms. The increasing number of IoT use cases increases the need for advanced integration capabilities that can tackle any integration challenge in an easy and rapid fashion.
So it’s all about the connection between the physical and virtual worlds and it can be challenging. To get maximum value from your IoT projects, you should consider using a platform that easily integrates IoT data with the core systems and processes that have run your business for years. Connect with us to make IoT simple.
Read more in our whitepaper: “Why IoT needs integration to fulfill its promise,” by clicking below.