from Digital Marketing, Technology

Can Your Business Benefit from the Internet of Things?

By Matt Cleveland
May 16, 2016 - read

We here at Waypost Marketing are here to help you simplify the internet, but we also want to make sure you understand as much about the internet as possible. To help you in your understanding, enjoy this guest article from Gregory Wolf at Wolf Technology Group in Greenville, South Carolina.

Internet of Things_IT_ServicesThe Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly becoming one of the top emerging trends in the world of technology today. If you consider yourself an IoT newbie, you're probably wondering, "What is IoT and how can it help my business?"

The Internet of Things is a term used to describe devices that are connected to the internet for the sole purpose transmitting critical data back into the cloud for further analysis. The data generated by IoT devices could be a game changer for your organization.

Gartner says that over 20 billion IoT devices will be in use by 2020. Gartner's market research also found that spending on IoT technology has increased by 30% from years 2015 to 2016. With so much momentum behind IoT, what business sector stands to benefit the most?

Internet of Things in Industry: A Practical Application

Industries that use complex supply chains stand to gain the most value from IoT deployments. Simple IoT sensors could be setup to continuously measure and monitor important metrics such as temperature, speed or humidity.

More sophisticated IoT devices can monitor performance and provide pivotal insights into your organization's internal processes. The whole idea behind IoT is to help businesses streamline profitability in real-time using actionable data gathered by sensors.

Coca Cola has recently proposed the idea of an IoT connected Coke machine. When machines get low on inventory, vendors receive alerts immediately. Coca Cola can also gain key insights into what products are selling and when they are being sold.

The IoT connected Coke machine also provides distributors with the ability to monitor the temperature of their inventory, ensuring customer satisfaction on every drink sold from the vending machine. The IoT connected Coke machine is one example of how businesses can use Big Data to make smarter decisions, ensure quality, and save on overhead.

Putting Internet of Things to Work for your Organization

Streamlining your business with IoT can likely be achieved if you stand to gain a significant edge over your competition by being able to gauge key metrics around your organization's internal processes.

Think about the day to day tasks performed by your business and ask yourself:

  • Could any of these processes could be streamlined to save the company money?
  • What would need to happen for the cost of a good to be reduced?
  • Could IoT replace the duties of some of your employees?

Before you deploy IoT, have a clear, well thought out goal in mind before making the investment. Think about the value of the data you are harvesting and formulate how much money you believe this technology will either save or earn your company. If your organization is heavily focused on real world data, IoT sensors can provide real time data that will help your business make smarter decisions.

Finding the Right IoT Devices for Your Business

Once your business has made the decision to discover data using IoT, actually selecting the devices that you will use in your IoT deployment could prove to be challenging.

Some of the most popular IoT devices are the Raspberry Pi, Relayr's Wunderbar, and Intel's collection of IoT sensors. Choosing the best sensors for your IoT deployment will largely depend on what your organization is trying to accomplish. Since IoT devices are relatively cheap, it wouldn't hurt to buy a few different brands to see which device works best for your organization.

Managing Data Gathered by Internet of Things Sensors

Most organizations have an in house development team that can create custom applications based upon the data generated by IoT devices.

Before diving head first into the world of IoT, your organization must have the technical expertise to manage an IoT deployment. Luckily, popular APIs such as SOAP and others can used in conjunction with IoT devices.

IoT sensors can generate a ton of data. Not only will your organization be tasked with storing the data, it is important to note that the infrastructure must already be in place when the data starts flowing. Depending on how much data your sensors generate, your company may have to invest in additional servers to parse the data before inserting it into a database.

Taking the Next Step into the World of Internet of Things

Because of the significant infrastructure challenges posed by IoT, many organizations are leveraging Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) providers to rent these services with pricing that only bills you for what you use in the cloud.

IaaS providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and IBM's SoftLayer give enterprises a ubiquitous method to rapidly process, store, and analyze IoT generated data.

Storing IoT data in the cloud has several benefits. Organizations can setup Machine Learning services that analyze data in order to find patterns. The cloud also provides as much storage space as your organization needs, while simultaneously providing your IT staff with access to the data instantaneously from any location in the world.

IoT is poised to change the way the world does business. Jump on the IoT train early in order to gain a competitive advantage within your industry.

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Tags: Digital Marketing, Technology