Is the Internet of Things Always Online?


Traditional Internet of Things (IoT) was about passive sensors gathering data to a centralized database. The sensors were often numerous, the data was small, and the centralized database collected long term trends for analytics. There was very little a high-end critical connectivity broadband router could help beyond being a point of aggregation for the multiple sensor data streams. Customers geared towards solutions offering power savings, extremely low cost, and minimal bandwidth. This traditional cadre of devices was exemplified by temperature sensors in meeting rooms.

But IoT is changing. New IoT devices need completely new capabilities. They host a set of high data stream sensors, utilize machine learning both off and on device to make decisions and interact with the world. The software running inside the devices is vastly more complex and the development, deployment, maintenance, and upgrade cycles are performed over the air with continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) -logic. IoT devices are becoming robots.

Examples of these new IoT devices include many full-blown industrial machines, elevators, and engines. These machines can be reporting countless of data points of the production status - essentially creating big data within a single day. The data is analyzed already on the device to be able to shut down to prevent failures and accidents. Further, the data is expected to be analyzed in more detail in various backend systems that then return new control values to continue and optimize the operation. While the backend might not need to respond in fractions of a second, the requirements are strict. Every second lost means that the process you are running is losing value. Every minute an expensive device is not in use, you are losing value. While data is said to be the most valuable asset in the world, in many cases the value decreases rapidly as the data gets older.

It will take a while still before most of these robots will start to move as well, if don't count our traditional market of cars and other vehicles as IoT devices. However, we already see that our multichannel solutions can bring in a lot of value to this huge fleet of new devices. While the device will not move away from the coverage area of the network, any single network is bound to fail from time to time. When this eventually happens, our solutions ensure that there is a seamless switch to another network and your IoT solution continues to provide valuable real-time data and can be manipulated both for its operation and its maintenance*.

(*Check out, how we have ensured that our software maintenance never fails catastrophically!)