The Internet of Things “IoT” has become a unique phenomenon creating unprecedented opportunities leading to real economic value in the decades to come.
By definition, IoT is the principal of intelligent integration of information and communications technology systems into our daily lives via machines, devices and sensors. This "intelligent" integration is driving the industrial evolution of IoT.
IoT is about the automation and digital transformation of existing processes, creating social and economic changes in our society. It introduces a shift in the traditional business and service models while generating new values. This transformation touches all sectors in our life such as transportation, retail, healthcare, farming, safety, security, utilities, energy, environment and urban development.
The IoT industry has evolved at a rapid pace over the last decade. Double-digit market growth rate and business potential is very attractive and expected to be in the hundreds of billions of dollars for network operators, enterprises, wireless infrastructure, devices and sensor manufacturers.
IoT is a complex and fragmented ecosystem built around three main building: Device, Network and Applications. Devices include sensors that collect information to be sent to applications for processing to perform useful functions. The networks, also known as connectivity, are generally wireless technologies that transport the information from the devices to the applications.
Connectivity technologies range from short distance radio, wide area networks or public cellular expanding to satellite for global coverage. Global Mobile Network Operators and wireless technology manufacturers alike continue to invest in building the most cost-effective technologies.
Similarly, satellite IoT technology is gaining momentum and accelerating growth because it provides a unique data management capability and critical infrastructure for new opportunities.
However, the Industrial IoT evolution has been facing an increasing challenge with multiple technologies operating in isolation from each other. The industry has realised that no single technology that will be enough to achieve the projected market growth.
That has created a global need to remove technology borders to enable seamless interoperability and integration in order to deliver the flexibility, scalability to maximise the market potential.
Removing the technology borders will lead to a wider reachability, larger scale and global adoption.
Global standardisation bodies have done tremendous advancement forming a single framework for exchanging and sharing the data among all applications.
On the connectivity side, major challenges still need to be addressed on how to deal with two different networks, provisioning, billing and operation issues. Obviously, those challenges slow down technology adoption. Seamless integration and interoperability is key factor, as it can dramatically expand the overall IoT ecosystem growth by boosting the development of extraordinary products, solutions and value added services.
It is essential to ensure smooth transition, not only from information transport continuity, but also and most importantly, when it comes to service provisioning, billing, business processes, customer care, etc.
The key for success in 2016 is to provide the IoT without borders. My colleagues and I at Globecomm are solving this challenge by removing the technology borders, whether they are cellular or satellite, or on land or at sea. The goal is not only to ensure seamless transition from one technology to another, but to enable managed services for provisioning, billing, device management, customer care, and operation for both networks.
Combining satellite coverage with cellular connectivity for Industrial IoT market offers the type of end-to-end service offering for expanded connectivity, faster time to market and simpler manageability even for most complex infrastructures or the most remote locations around the world.
Medhat Mahmoud is the Director of M2M Solutions at Globecomm.