Microsoft’s IoT Solutions Empower Organisations and Increase their Operational Efficiency

by January 28, 2019 0 comments

IoT is one of the crucial technological advancements that would empower every business for the long run. Internet of Things has a massive role to play in various industries and projects including retail, manufacturing, smart cities, transportation and healthcare. And here, Microsoft is at the forefront to meet this emerging demand.

To elaborate on more on it, PCQuest had a discussion with Virendra Chaudhari, Intelligent Cloud, Internet of Things (IoT) Global Black Belt, Microsoft

What is the outlook and future of IoT technology in India?

The Internet of Things represents the next major wave of computing and will improve and extend businesses by harnessing signals and data from remote devices. Microsoft believes that in the coming years, this will be the new normal across all industries and that companies not harnessing IoT will be at a significant competitive disadvantage.

Microsoft’s mission is to empower every person and organization on the planet to achieve more, and IoT plays a big role in that empowerment. Microsoft is the only company on the planet with a broad portfolio of an Internet of Things services, solutions and support to help companies around the globe successfully navigate and realize business value from IoT, from start-ups to blue-chip firms and in industries as diverse as manufacturing, retail, health and smart cities.

Microsoft believes that the future of India lies with the digital transformation of industry players, many of which are customers and partners with Microsoft. To help them walk their journey of digital transformation, we at Microsoft, enforce our customers to reimagine the way people, data and processes can be brought together, to create more value and maintain a competitive advantage in a digital-first world.

With technology shaping the society and redefining the business landscape in a mobile-first, cloud-first world, Microsoft prepares its customers and partners for this disruption.

What IoT means for various industries such as the scope of IoT in retail, manufacturing, smart cities, transportation and healthcare?

In this mobile-first, cloud-first world where technology is shaping the society and redefining the business landscape, Microsoft is continuously observing the emerging demand for IoT in India across industries such as utilities, manufacturing, automotive, transportation and logistics. Everyday customers are already using IoT enabled smart devices for health and wellness, tracking devices for personal safety, and the emerging smart home systems category.

Players of the manufacturing industry are implementing Internet of Things technology to build up smart factories and enforce smart manufacturing, while automotive players are deploying IoT solutions in connected vehicles. Many other industries like healthcare, transportation, etc. are reinforced with IoT technology. Also, initiatives like Digital India, Make in India and Smart Cities feature IoT as a key enabler of public utilities and services.

How can Smart manufacturing and Industrial IoT simplify the work of enterprises?

The Internet of Things is massively changing how various industries do business. This technology is transforming companies by enhancing the competitive edge at the intersection of people, data and intelligent machines. The productivity and efficiency gains garnered from improved operational effectiveness are putting those organizations willing to harness these tools at the forefront of the industry.

India is witnessing a rapid upsurge in the demand for IoT. From a SaaS offering to preconfigured solutions, Microsoft’s array of IoT solutions helps the organisation to not only streamline their processes but also increase their operational efficiency.

We’ve seen great traction with customers and partners who continue to come up with new ideas and execute them on our platform. Our increased investments and continuous research and development in key areas, including securing IoT, creating development tools and intelligent services for the Internet of Things and the edge will help us grow internally and with our customer and partner ecosystem.

How is Microsoft IoT enabling enterprises to achieve more and simplify operations and business?

Indian organizations/enterprises are realizing the business value brought in by the Internet of Things, with heightened awareness and aggressive plans to deploy an IoT solution.

According to a report by NASSCOM and Deloitte, the current number of IoT devices in India is around 60 million and the number is going to increase to 1.9 billion units by 2020. The IoT market in India is poised to reach $15 billion by 2020, accounting for 5% of the global market.

Microsoft’s Internet of Things offerings today include what businesses need to get started, ranging from operating systems for devices, cloud services to control and secure them, advanced analytics to gain insights, and business applications to enable intelligent action of the enterprises.

Recently, Microsoft announced a global investment of $5 billion in the Internet of Things over the next four years, with a goal to provide every customer with the ability to transform their businesses, and the world at large, with connected solutions. This increased investment will support continued innovation in our technology platform, as well as supporting programs.

Microsoft also believes in transforming itself continuously in order to help its customers and partners transform at a continuous pace, for which it continues to focus on research and development in key areas, including securing Internet of Things, creating development tools and intelligent services for IoT and the edge, and investments to grow our partner ecosystem.

Microsoft’s array of IoT solutions helps the organisation to not only streamline their processes but also increase their operational efficiency.

Could you share some relevant examples of IoT being used in different areas?

IoT in manufacturing: Operational technology and information technology are coming together for the first time, creating new opportunities for digital manufacturers. Connected products, people and things produce terabytes of data every day that manufacturer can access and extract deep insights to optimize business and manufacturing processes better than ever before. More importantly, insight from this data helps manufacturers identify new revenue streams by developing high-value service offerings focused on how products and customers interact in the real world. Microsoft’s Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions help optimize operations and gain that competitive advantage in engaging today’s customers who are demanding new and integrated experiences.

To connect businesses from storefronts and hospitality establishments to smart products and more, IoT in Retail is being adapted to enhance customer experience. The retail industry is undergoing seismic shifts stoked by swift and unprecedented technology innovation. For retailers and brands navigating this new world, digital intelligence and innovation are critical to driving sales and margins in today’s on-demand consumer economy. Microsoft can help retailers reimagine their businesses and survive and thrive in today’s competitive environment.

From supply chain logistics to public transit, IoT solutions are being used in transportation to better business in a number of ways. For example, by connecting shipping vehicles with sensors to monitor temperature, companies can help ensure goods, especially food, arrive in a safe condition. Sensors and smart software can also be used in a semi-truck or public bus to collect data that can be used to help the driver operate the vehicle in a manner that helps save fuel. In the future, connected infrastructure will also work with connected vehicles to help reduce traffic and prevent accidents. The Microsoft Connected Vehicle Platform consists of a comprehensive set of Microsoft services and products that span the physical (car) and digital (cloud), with a focus on addressing commonly required use cases.

IoT in healthcare: has potentially lifesaving capabilities, seeking to improve patient quality of life and enable self-monitoring and management of health. In hospitals, IoT biometric devices can monitor vital signs allowing health professionals to oversee an entire ward at the glance of a tablet screen. Microsoft’s IoT solutions for healthcare help transform the care and treatment of patients, equipment maintenance, and the way hospitals operate with security and innovation.

IoT Monitoring of Water Quality: Authorities across States have turned to IoT to monitor drinking water quality for its citizens. TechSpan Engineering has implemented a monitoring system built on the Azure IoT platform, using sensors provided by the Austrian firm s:: can and their India Partner Aaxis Nano. Using the power of the Microsoft cloud, IoT and data, the solution taps into the robust s:: can sensors to provide measurements across 17 parameters.

IoT based Smart Lighting: Samudra LED: Microsoft Azure Internet of Things is powering India’s first Smart Street Lighting Project for the pink city of Jaipur, underscoring Microsoft’s mission of transforming public spaces digitally. The Jaipur Municipal Corporation (JMC) operates and maintains over 100,000 public street lights within the city. The project will benefit 1.65 million people through improved street lighting and a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 36,750 metric tons/year. It will also result in $1 million per year in fiscal savings accrued to the government due to reduced energy consumption.

IoT in Agriculture: Microsoft FarmBeats is a research project for agriculture that enables seamless data collection from various sensors, cameras and drones. It comprises two broad areas viz., a data-acquisition system consisting of drones and sensors and a data-analysis system consisting of connectivity pieces, cloud storage, and predictive analysis.

IoT in the Automobile Sector: Earlier last year, Tata Motors announced it will leverage Microsoft’s connected vehicle technologies that bring together AI, advanced ML, and IoT capabilities on Microsoft’s Azure cloud, to create a highly personalized, smart and safer driving experience across the digital life of a vehicle owner.

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