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Over the years, we have acknowledged that every company is becoming a data company. It’s not just Google, Amazon and Apple that get the data out of their ears. With sensors now every device and product – from cars and appliances to thermostats – even the most rugged enterprises have access to data that is growing rapidly. But creating data and using it effectively are two very different things.
We all know what happens when tech-native companies start using data to their advantage (consider personalized ads, product recommendations or streamlined online checkout experiences), but legacy industries such as manufacturing, automotive and utilities use their data. Starts activating. The effects of these strategies are still felt in childhood. But even so, all signs point to the impact of this data awareness as more meaningful than the data-based changes made possible by Big Tech.
Transformation of old-school industries
Take the automotive industry, for example. Every day, an autonomous car – with hundreds of sensors – can collect more than 25 gigabytes of data. On a scale, it collects this exabyte data for the companies that manufacture it. These sensors have turned the proverbial garden hose into a fire hydrant, providing organizations with data. If this amount of data is moved to the cloud and strategically taken advantage of, the impact can be huge.
For example, if an automotive manufacturer starts collecting and analyzing data from sensors in a car, it may share that data with insurance providers to fundamentally change the way insurance policies are made. Safe as a driver, low monthly payments. In addition, they can partner with city and state governments on driving behavior, providing information on new roadways, and detecting bad conditions – changing the look of today’s cities.
Smart meter manufacturers are taking similar steps to use the full potential of their data. Smart meters, which monitor energy consumption, consistently collect data that is critical to meeting energy needs across communities. This data is crucial for utility companies: it not only provides information on reliability and maintenance measures, as well as pricing structure, but also accelerates green initiatives to reduce carbon emissions. Working hand-in-hand with utility companies, smart meter manufacturers can become an essential accelerator for a more sustainable future.
How can we succeed in using IoT data strategically?
To create a world in which legacy companies, together, use IoT data strategically, the cloud needs to be more accessible. While the benefits of the cloud are widely recognized, the challenges of getting data quickly and securely on a scale there have made little use of it.
Large, unstructured IoT data workloads – usually stored on edge or on-premises – require infrastructure that not only handles the flow of big data, but also directs traffic to ensure that data should be where it should be without interruption or downtime. Get there This is not an easy feat when it comes to data sets in the petabyte and exabyte ranges, but the essential challenge is this: prioritizing real-time activation of data on a scale. By building a foundation that optimizes the capture, migration, and use of IoT data, these companies can unlock new business models and revenue streams that fundamentally change their impact on the world around us.
Growing information tides lift all boats
As legacy companies begin to embrace their IoT data, cloud service providers should pay attention. Adopting the cloud, which has long been seen as a priority in businesses seeking to better understand their customers, will become increasingly central to the transformation of traditional companies. Services delivered to and around the cloud will serve as a highway for manufacturers or utilities to move, activate and monetize Exabytes data, which is important for businesses across industries. As these companies gradually make this transition from hardware manufacturers to data aggregators, business models shaping our world will begin to evolve.
David Richards is the CEO and chairman of WANDisco.
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