Is the Industrial Internet of Things a Thing?

Industrial Internet of Things

The Industrial Internet of Things will connect machines together and help business to move faster and with more accuracy. The IIoT, for short, is already here. Companies in virtually every industry on the planet are beginning to realize the value in hooking up all of their tools to the internet. Not to be confused with the Internet of Things, or IoT, which typically refers to consumer goods that have attached sensors which connect them to the internet. The IIoT goes a step further. The IIoT is a state of business practice, you could say, where everything is connected to the web. In essence, the IIoT is a place where even the tools we use to manufacture our internet-connected consumer goods become connected themselves. That means manufacturing tools of all kinds, and an infinite number of other non-consumer goods that had never before been considered “smart” before will gain that description.

The Industrial Internet of Things is a thing.

Together, the IoT and IIoT will create an unprecedented amount of new data. This new data will need to be sorted, integrated, analyzed, and applied to the business practices in order to create actionable insights. The IIoT will incorporate big data, machine learning, and sensor data into one giant data hub. This will create a giant opportunity for companies already working in data integration, big data, and business analytics.

As a direct result of IIot implementation in the technology and business sectors, we will start to see warehouses (not data, but physical establishments) get “smart.” In addition, we’ll also see intelligence manufacturing plants and smarter commercial-grade machines. We’re already seeing it; automation technologies in manufacturing are nothing new. The IIoT will build upon that. Automated machines will no longer just take orders from a worker punching buttons, these machines will use a combination of what they’ve learned in conjunction with big data applications to make decisions for themselves.

 

The driving force behind the IIoT is creating environments where internet-connected smart tools and machines can execute tasks with better accuracy than people. Machines will be trained to capture and communicate data faster, and without error. These improvements will enable organizations to pick up on inefficiencies and issues sooner, which will save them time, money, and improve relations with consumers while supporting efforts in DI and BI. Conversely, there are also serious quality control and supply chain efficiency benefits here.

The Industrial Internet of Things will introduce and integrate intelligence into products, services, and processes of production, something that has never been seen before. Data integration will become a key cog to this new way of business, and as more data is created as a result of sensors connected to manufacturing tools, that new information will need to be analyzed and moved to the appropriate areas. Those organizations that fail to hop on board with this fast-moving process will be left behind quickly.

Digging deeper, real-time integration will be a must in the very near future. Successful companies will use the IIot to capture new growth through three approaches:

  • Boosting revenues by increasing and creating new hybrid business models
  • Exploit intelligence technologies to fuel innovation
  • Transforming their workforce

The IIoT is both a growth play and defensive maneuver for contemporary producers, energy producers, and service providers. The internet changed how we do business, communicate, and interact with our surroundings from a business perspective. Now, the IIoT will do that again by connecting machines and devices together into intelligent functioning systems. These systems will work with one another at unprecedented speeds, scaling, and technical capabilities. Sensor-driven computing, intelligent machine applications, and industrial analytics will be the major factors at the helm of this transformation.

I’m aware that the vast majority of conversations regarding the IoT and IIoT come with the connotation “In 2020…”, but the future is now. Rome wasn’t built in a day, as they say, and this will represent a revolutionary change in the way humans build things. The IIoT will completely change entire industries, setting it up to be the next industrial revolution.

Timothy King
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