The numbers are mind-boggling. The number of Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and internet-connected devices will mushroom as high as 50 billion by 2020 and generate over 500 zettabytes of data. Analyst firm IDC predicts that spending on IoT related equipment and software will reach $1.2 trillion by 2022.
The industrial sector will be a major beneficiary. Manufacturers that prepare themselves for this wave of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) sensors and devices will be far more able to consolidate all operational technology (OT, IT), business intelligence (BI), quality and production process inputs into a single data model. By doing so, they gain tremendous competitive advantage as well as achieving a step-change in process efficiency.
As the demand for IIoT solutions is expected to increase exponentially, remote connectivity will become critical for many applications. The good news is that a robust cellular infrastructure has been established by telecommunication carriers that is been designed to interface with a diverse array of IIoT end points, and then relay that information to industrial control systems.
Accordingly, Siemens has released the SCALANCE M876-4 and IIoT Connectivity Packages. These turnkey solutions provide secure teleservice and telecontrol connectivity through 4G LTE cellular networks. They offer a cost-effective way to connect remote locations while simplifying setup and installation. The complexity of choosing wireless carriers and data plans while also providing a singular point of contact is also eliminated.
The combination of Siemens connectivity packages and the IIoT opens up new ways for smart sensors and actuators to enhance manufacturing and industrial processes. In parallel, these systems unleash real-time analytics that can take advantage of data from a wide range of industrial systems.
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