The sixth annual SVIEF event was held September 30th to October 1, 2016 in Santa Clara, CA. The conference discussed many hot tech topics like artificial reality/virtual reality, cloud & big data, robotics, smart cars, drones. We summarize the Internet of Things (IoT) panel in this post as it’s the most closely related to communications technologies (which were not discussed)
Moderator: P. K. Agarwal, Dean & CEO, Northeastern University-Silicon Valley
- Prashant Tyagi, Sr. Director, IoT and Big Data Platforms, GE Digital
- Nik Tehrani, Vice President of Business Development, DynoSense
- Steve Yung, Chairman & CEO, V5 Systems Inc.
Moderator PK Agarwal gave each panelist an opportunity to quickly describe their company’s involvement and stake in IoT:
- Prashant Tyagi said that while GE was founded in 1892 and is 124 years old, GE Digital has been in existence for only four years. It’s focused on the Industrial IoT (IIoT), especially Return on Investment (RoI). If GE can achieve an improvement efficiency >= 1% in the industrial control systems it operates (e.g. turbines, power, aircraft) it would result in a $200B cost savings for the company. That’s five times the potential profits of the consumer IoT market, according to Prashant. However, IIoT systems must operate on an industrial scale (assumes high availability and reliability)
- Nik Tehrani said DynoSense is pursuing medical monitoring/measurements and cloud based data analytics as part of the digital health revolution. He outlined a five step process for DynoSense IoT systems: 1) sensor captures data; 2) data analyzed by cloud based compute servers; 3) results of analytics are resolved; 4) respond if something has gone wrong (anomaly detected); 5) repeat and re-use the system. From their website, the company was founded on March 13, 2013 (so is only a little more than three years old).
- Steve Yung said V5 Systems provides a self powered outdoor IoT platform which includes sensors, wireless communications, power management, storage, edge computing and edge security. V5 provides a multi-layer IoT stack to facilitate those functions.
- Steve said the health care market was said to be huge and growing at 75% to 80% with people looking for real time information. A shift from reactive to proactive health care is in process, according to Yung. Aging population needs help with more assisted living, especially in Japan. Chronic care accounts for 75% of US health care expenses. Corporate wellness programs lower abstenteeism and increase productivity. There’s more involvement from health insurance companies and contract research organizations (CROs).
- PK noted the wide range of technologies needed to make IoT a reality: sensors, electronics, power management & control, connectivity (local and remote communications capabilities), edge computing, security, data analytics, cloud computing & storage. How those all work together and cohesively is a real challenge.
- Prashant opined that use cases will be very important for IoT. GE Digital has created a “Digital Twin” analytics model that was used to improve efficiency at wind farms. Each digital wind farm begins life as a digital twin (play the game), a cloud-based computer model of a wind farm at a specific location. The model allows engineers to pick from as many as 20 different turbine configurations – from pole height, to rotor diameter and turbine output – for each pad at the wind farm and design its most efficient real-world doppelganger.
- The many digital twin opportunities for GE start with its big machines — aircraft engines, locomotives and gas turbines. Using the digital twin approach, a GE service team will know not only when to bring an aircraft in for inspection but what parts to have on hand and how long the jet will be out of service.
- Digital Twin Reference: http://gelookahead.economist.com/digital-twin/
- The company’s innovative products are patented, advanced, and cloud-based health scanning platforms with health metrics and analytic engines that can be integrated into communities of caregivers, trainers, pharmacists, doctors, and family members.
- Nik maintains that character builds companies- more so than technology expertise. He cited the following important traits for success: committment, heart, passion, humility, humor, and “never give up.”
- Addendum: On Oct 3, 2016, Plus3.com and DynoSense Corp. announced an exclusive U.S. market strategic partnership to create a new and compelling corporate wellness offering that blends Plus3’s best-in-class socially-driven well being platform with DynoSense’s innovative home health monitoring system, all bundled in easy-to-use web and mobile apps.
- Key features of V5’s outdoor IoT system include power management and ability to train sensors to recognize offsets.
- Global security is the #1 issue for IoT, according to Steve (this author agrees).
- Multi-disciplined expertise (EE’s, ME’s, software engineers, computer scientists, algorithm developers, etc) are all needed to make IoT a reality.
Arrow’s IoT Perspective:
At the October 4th ST Developers Conference in Santa Clara, CA, Arrow’s IoT Director Jeth Harbinson outlined the key benefits of IoT. While they appear to be most relevant to IIoT, they may also apply to other IoT industry verticals:
- Optimize asset utilization
- Reduce operational cost
- Improve worker productivity
- Improve worker safety
- Create new revenue streams
- Improve survivability
- Enhance the customer experience
Jeth then provided a four step process for IoT development: Design, operate, optimize, and restore. The necessary IoT functional components are: sensors, edge electronics, gateways, connectivity, data platforms, analytics and security. He noted there were over 200 IoT platforms (many industry specific) from vendors like Amazon, HP Enterprise, IBM, and many others and admitted it was quite difficult to sort them out.
In addition to being a distributor of hardware and providing software solutions, Arrow has also gotten into the systems integratrion business by providing hardware/software sub-systems for different IoT solution providers.
IoT References by this author:
- How Telcos Can Play a Prominent Role & Monetize the IoT
- IoT World Summary Part III: Too Many Wireless WAN (LPWAN) “Standards” & Specs – May 23, 2016
- IoT World Summary Part II: Wireless LAN Connectivity Spaghetti, Issues & Solutions – May 21., 2016
- Highlights of IoT World, 10-12 May 2016, Santa Clara, CA + IEEE Member Comments – May 18., 2016
- AT&T to use LTE, Cat-M1 & M2 for IoT Applications – June 23., 2016
- AT&T Focus on Smart City Development (part of IoT) – June 20., 2016
- Accenture Survey: 47% of consumers see security as IoT adoption barrier – June 16., 2016