Circa 1750, the industrial revolution brought about innovations that changed the dynamics of manufacturing. With automated production processes and efficient machines, the industrial revolution touched every walk of life. Nearly 400 years later, the manufacturing industry is gearing up for another revolution — Industrial IoT. With connected machines and solutions that offer clearer insights into production, this emerging technology is poised to change our lives beyond imagination.
As is the case with most transformational innovations, the increasing adoption of Industrial IoT has brought with it a lot of skepticism. In the ‘new world of super connectivity’ and ‘internet of things’, can the manufacturing industry really benefit?
Benefits of IIoT adoption
Let’s explore some benefits a manufacturing business can reap by taking baby steps towards IIoT adoption.
Single window into floor operations: As an initial step into IIoT, manufacturing units can connect machines to gain a single view of plant operations. Operators can monitor clusters of machines to identify, analyse and rectify gaps in production.
Remote asset health monitoring: IIoT platforms retrieve machine data and analyse them in real-time. Machine data from various plants can be consolidated and analyzed to conduct preventive maintenance and improve utilization, ensuring smooth operations.
Process orchestration: Connecting with disparate systems, collecting data, and analyzing data to identify patterns — insights from disparate and diverse silos of assets, operators, and enterprise systems provide unified real-time visibility of KPIs for increased operational performance and improved decision making.
Are Indian IT firms seizing the opportunity?
Yes, NASSCOM’s “IoT in India Report”, published in July this year, talks about a vibrant IoT startup ecosystem in India. India boasts of tech firms that provide niche solution for retail and industrial IoT segments. There are firms offering specific IoT solutions for connected vehicles, healthcare, retail, security, embedded computing, connected homes, lifestyle and smart agriculture. While some of these IoT firms are niche solution providers, there are IoT solutions provided by established IT solutions provider also. However, in this initial period of contemplation, where neither the industries nor the IoT service providers are clear about the challenged and projected RoI, a prebuilt solution that can be customized for specific industries would be a better proposition.
Omnia – an IIoT Solution
Omnia, a solution developed by QBurst, is an example of an IIoT solution that can be customized to address multi-industry challenges. QBurst recently unveiled Omnia at the 36th GITEX Technology Week held in Dubai on October 16. The solution collects machine data and relays it to the cloud platform for analysis. The solution provides intuitive visualization and actionable insights for plant managers and management. Another example is Meshify, an IIoT solution that incorporates M1 Dragonfly hardware to easily integrate with sensors and other industrial assets, reducing development efforts and time.
Majority of manufacturers today have come to acknowledge the value of IIoT in addressing unplanned downtime and productivity issues. For many, especially in India, this would be the right time to board the IIoT bus.