IoT Platform for Connected Products
There are plenty of reasons to connect your products. It might be to gain an advantage in your market or to keep up with the competition. You might want to offer new services or use the data for predictive maintenance or a stronger aftermarket offer.
Connecting products might be just a competitive advantage or a revolution of your industry. Regardless, you must understand what values connecting your product can provide.
While choosing the right technology and communication protocol can be challenging, it’s usually the first step taken. Choosing or developing a cloud IoT platform is often harder, as the expertise required is very different from that in electrical engineering. And if the platform handles 10 devices, will it scale properly to 10,000? How do you ensure real-time analytics are fast enough for your use cases? Suddenly, the quality of your products is dependent on the uptime and performance of your whole chain of software.
How Beacon Tower fits:
The Beacon Tower architecture is based on many years of experience building IoT platforms. It makes use of well-tested Azure services that ensure a stable, scalable and high-performance solution.
By using Beacon Tower you can focus on your product development, while we ensure Beacon Tower supports it in whatever direction you want to take it.
Key Beacon Tower functionalities that enable Connected Products
Rules & Alarms
Create rules that are applied directly on streaming real-time data. The rules can either be simple thresholds that triggers alarms when sensor values go outside them, or complex rules based on multiple different sensor values and algorithms.
The rules can either start actions or trigger alarms. The alarms can be of varying severity to notify different groups of users.
Using rules and real time telemetry to visualize equipment condition in graphs allows you to see trends, compare signals and understand your assets, while getting notifications if something critical happens. You can customize a dashboard for each type of asset and for each node in the node hierarchy to ensure the right information is always available.
Asset & Device Management
A core component in any IoT platform is the device manager. In Beacon Tower we use a state-of-the-art scalable device manager that can manage any number of devices. It supports updating firmware or properties on single devices, batches or all devices of a certain type, depending on your needs. It can also provide a full overview of what devices are working properly and which devices have lost connection or are behaving irregularly.
Real Time Telemetry
The Real Time Telemetry processing is the core of Beacon Tower’s signal processing. It allows you to create rules that triggers alarms or actions within milliseconds from receiving the signal.
Beacon Tower can further be white labelled in multiple layers. This allows you to provide Beacon Tower as a platform for your products if needed.
Critical challenges for Connected Products
Data reality check
Understand the data that can be or is being collected. How do we securely connect to the product? What does the gathered data actually measure and what is its granularity and precision?
Map any other data that’s relevant. This can be both internal (e.g. historic consumer data or field service history) and external data (e.g. weather data, energy prices, traffic information).
Qualify and quantify
Understand the properties of the opportunities. Do they rely on raw or aggregated data? Are they based on real time analytics or do they rely on historical data? It also requires a choice of analytical method (e.g. Machine Learning might be an option?). These choices significantly alters the architecture and infrastructure needed.
Identify opportunities based on the available data. This is the hard part and requires an innovative approach or a good understanding of other case studies. Here is the crucial time to remember that not all opportunities will be revolutionary. It’s usually easier starting with something simple that’s easily understood.
Decide which data to gather and in what form to store it. Deciding which data is relevant to store is important to not get overwhelmed by it. Should some data only be analyzed in real-time and then discarded? Is some data only valuable when aggregated? For how long is the data useful?