Internet of Things (IoT) is a new area of information technology that allows connecting more users, devices, services, and applications to the Internet. Devices connected to other devices and applications can exchange data directly and indirectly with each other. End users access this data via the web and mobile applications, configure devices, and maintain IoT systems.
IoT technology in the business sector, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), is closely related to the fourth industrial revolution, also known as Industry 4.0. The concept is the same – various sensors, wireless networks, an enormous amount of data, and analytics uses to measure and optimize industrial processes.
Below, read more about the Internet of Things and Industrial IoT.
Internet of Things, IoT
It can apply in households, cities, business, trade, logistics, energy, agriculture, industry, education, health, administration, and other areas.
The IoT infrastructure consists of:
- intelligent devices,
- network infrastructure for their connection,
- systems that use data generated by intelligent devices.
A smart device is an instrument or machine with the properties of a computer. Its key feature is that it can communicate with other devices in the environment and perform intelligent operations.
Such a device must have the following physical components:
- power supply,
- and communication interface.
The memory of smart devices enables storage of data from sensors and realization of operations for which devices are programmed.
IoT devices include:
- Sensors for monitoring the status and notification of changes in the environment.
- Actuators who, based on detected changes in the environment, perform physical activities through management actions.
- Modules that allow receiving commands in a specific environment.
- Microcontrollers (usually based on microprocessors) with built-in memory, clock, and hardware for connecting to external devices, such as sensors, actuators, and transceivers for wireless data transmission.
- Microcomputers with microprocessor, memory, and input-output devices.
The characteristics of IoT devices are:
- Dynamic self-adaptability – they dynamically adapt to the environment and react to changes from the environment. They are configured with minimal user participation.
- Interoperability of communication protocols – they communicate with each other through standardized interoperable communication protocols.
- Unique Identity – have unique symbolic or numeric identifiers, such as an IP address or a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI). Using a unique identifier, users access the device over the Internet, remotely control the device, configure and monitor its status.
- Network connectivity – they are connected to a computer network that allows them to communicate with each other and be visible to other devices and applications.
IoT devices can be home appliances, computers, smartphones, printers, cars, industrial machines, devices in energy systems, devices in health systems, and others.
Communication between smart devices enables the implementation of applications, such as smart measurements, remote control of vehicles, remote monitoring of patients’ health, remote monitoring, automation in industry, and more.
Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)
Increasing labor productivity or cost savings are the two primary goals of IIoT. However, the Industrial Internet of Things can also create alternative sources of revenue. For example, in the production of engines, the manufacturer can deal with the sale of engines, but also their predictive maintenance.
Also, if Industrail IoT were introduced into the entire supply chain, and not only in certain parts of it, but the impact on the industry would also undoubtedly be greater. Delivery of materials would always be on time (without delay) and the entire production process could be managed more easily.
Manufacturers add sensors to their products to get data on how those products perform in the market. This can help companies spot faults and replace a component before it causes more damage. Companies can also use the data that these sensors collect to make their systems and supply chains as efficient as possible, as they will get much more accurate data on what is going on in the business system.
The business-related benefits of the Internet of Things and Industrial IoT depend on the specific implementation. Companies must have access to more information about their products/services and their own internal business organization system. This will create greater opportunities for innovative changes that would bring the desired results.