Data Delivery Powers the Future of IoT
Some things are so big they are hard to imagine … the distance of a lightyear (light travelling at 186,000 miles per second for a year) … the vastness of space (travelling for 25,000 lightyears just to reach our nearest neighboring galaxy) … and Cisco’s estimate that the world already has more than 50 billion IoT devices deployed, with that number growing by the second.
To stretch the imagination a bit more, try to fathom a zettabyte. PC Magazine measures a zettabyte in terms of storing “30 billion 4k movies … or 7.5 trillion MP3 songs” explaining that “If you wanted 3 zettabytes of storage at home, you'd need to hook up 300 million 10TB hard drives.”
Why speak of zettabytes? Because a few years ago IDC estimated that by 2025 there would be 160 zettabytes of data generated globally—per year—in part due to the increased adoption of industrial-grade IoT devices. More recently, Seagate upped that estimate to 175 zettabytes per year.
From where is all that data streaming? Everything from baby monitors and smart thermostats, to massive deployments of internet-connected sensors and actuators across the full spectrum of the manufacturing, healthcare, energy, public utilities and other sectors. Just looking at smart cars, Bloomberg quotes a Morgan Stanley report predicting “Autonomous vehicles will generate as much as 40 terabytes of data an hour from cameras, radar, and other sensors—equivalent to an iPhone's use over 3,000 years—and suck in massive amounts more to navigate roads.” That’s 40 terabytes per hour for each vehicle.
Zettabytes of Data = Enormous Value
From enormous data streams can come enormous value. A critical linkage in this data ecosystem is data delivery. Data from the field can only be transformed into value when it is delivered swiftly—in many cases immediately—from sensor to portal where the information can be analyzed for insights and actions.
When speaking of IoT within the industrial and healthcare sectors, the speed and 100% reliability of data delivery can become a life and death concern. Late or incomplete delivery of data from an industrial sensor could lead to industrial accidents, even disasters. Healthcare is using a vast number of sensors and other IoT devices throughout healthcare delivery, including wearable devices that monitor a patient’s health status from home.
Autonomous vehicles will literally hit the gas pedal on the need for ever faster and reliable data delivery. Sensors meant to keep a car safely on the road at 60 miles per hour, or to tell a car cruising through the city that a child is chasing a soccer ball into its path, need instant analysis and response, all mediated by faultless, real-time data delivery.
Even when lives aren’t hanging in the balance, the value of data is frequently measured in its ability to be used in real-time or near real-time analytics. For organizations able to operate at a more moderate pace, reliable data delivery still remains a mission critical element of deriving value from IoT.
The Challenge of IoT Data Delivery
IoT devices are incredibly diverse because they are used in so many ways across so many sectors. Sensors required within the oil and gas industry will differ from those used in pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, mining, agriculture, energy generation, power distribution, mining, banking, healthcare, transportation, warehousing, retail, and communications. Even within the brief listing of sectors above, each use case could give birth to dozens, hundreds, thousands, or more types of IoT devices.
Organizations face extreme challenges when they attempt to integrate the operations of their existing equipment with an entire system of embedded IoT sensors. The process of linking and debugging systems from different manufacturers, and with widely different functions, can be a nightmare of creating and debugging custom integrations—especially with the highly heterogeneous mix of custom IoT operating systems and interfaces. Added to this is integrating the most efficient communication networks: cellular, fixed line, WAN, LAN, FAN, or satellite. Often one solution will require the use of a mix of networks—especially for disaster failover scenarios, when, for example, a seamless shift to satellite is required.
Put simply, it can be tough to get data delivered from device to backend systems for analytics and actions. Every factory, hospital, municipal waterworks, or chemical plant that deploys an array of sensors, actuators, and other IoT devices, from a myriad of custom vendors, shouldn’t have to need specialized IT talent to stitch it all together.
Like UPS Trucks, We Specialize in Delivery … Data Delivery
This is why we created Datadel. We specialize in data delivery, so you don’t have to. When explaining what we do, we often point to United Parcel Service, which has a rich history. Back in the early 1900s, just about every factory, store, or other enterprise had its own fleet of delivery trucks, bicycles, and foot messengers. These fleets were expensive to assemble and operate. And each fleet faced its own learning curve of how best to manage the handling and routing of goods. That gave birth, in 1907 to the American Messenger Company, which soon expanded to became UPS. The premise of UPS was to focus on delivery, so others didn’t have to.
We’ve embraced that same concept: We specialize in delivery, data delivery. Focus on your core business, and let us handle the specialized, mission-critical task, of getting your IoT data from device to backend and back again. We are network communications specialists. And our deep experience with satellite communications means we can create data delivery solutions that can seamlessly move from land-based to satellite should infrastructure be lost to storms or other events.
We pride ourselves in providing a complete solution:
Our network can integrate several different wireless technologies with your sensors to get you the data you need, how you need it.
Our software allows you to customize each sensor’s schedule to get your data as often as you need it (or don’t).
Our platform lets you manage your IoT network in a user-friendly interface that granting you the ability to change schedules when your needs evolve.
Part of our methodology is to make onboarding our services simple and effective. We do it all with four logical steps:
The Whiteboard Session. Sit down with our engineering team for a discovery meeting. Tell us about your sensors, your sites, your challenges and your goals.
Network Ninjas. The Datadel team reviews your application(s) and selects the best technology based on your needs. We deliver to you a proposed network plan with pricing.
The Deployment. Whether you do it in-house or with Datadel’s trusted field service partners, your physical hardware is installed at the remote sites and brought online.
Network Management. From the Datadel portal, see your devices come online and get real-time metrics on data deliveries and scheduled sends.
There’s a galaxy of data heading this way. We can help you pull the value from your data by ensuring the data is there when you need it.