AI and machine learning make data smarter and more valuable
IoT and AI have a remarkable synergistic relationship. You might say that AI is the brain of the business and IoT is the body. AI, especially machine learning, provides intelligence – the ability to evaluate opportunities, learn from experience, and make smart business decisions. Like the body, IoT provides the ability to sense and act. IoT provides both the data that AI needs and the physical means to act according to AI’s decisions.
The convergence of AI and IoT creates countless new opportunities and business results. In manufacturing, predictive analysis gives production managers the intelligence to evaluate the trade-off between, for example, building a new plant or purchasing additional capacity as needed. And preventative maintenance systems use IIoT data plus AI to predict and prevent equipment problems before they happen, saving millions of dollars in unplanned downtime costs. E.g Western Digital uses asset performance analyzes to identify potential failures early in the production process and make timely decisions to avoid yield trips. As a result, the company has lowered the total number of returned units and increased customer loyalty and trust – which has a direct impact on its revenue.
A tipping point for IoT value
As AI, edge and fog technologies mature, they accelerate the Internet of Things to a tipping point – moving from creating value to creating brand new value propositions, business models and even industries. There are already plenty of examples of new value creation at the intersection of these technologies.
Consider new suggestions for new values, such as mass customization and personalization. With IoT and automation, customers can order a car, a suit or just about anything else and specify the options they want – and it’s rolled out of the production line made to order at a price close to mass-produced goods. Eg. Uses Daihatsu Motor Company 3D printers to offer customers 10 colors and 15 basic patterns to create their own “power skin” for exterior cars.
IoT has proven to be a basic capability that (when combined with machine learning and fog or edge calculation) creates entirely new industries such as autonomous drones. It is also a key force behind the convergence of existing industries such as transport and technology and retail and manufacturing.
IoT’s collaborative, interconnected nature also initiates new business models, including “co-economy”. This model is based on dynamic ecosystems from partners and customers who bring together complementary strengths to deliver co-created solutions. E.g Volvo Trucks and Mack Trucks Use an always-fixed diagnostic service with sensor data and AI solutions from SAS to minimize unplanned downtime. Data from each truck is constantly monitored for error codes that are triggered when something is wrong with a larger system. Thousands of sensors on each truck collect real-time streaming IoT data to provide context, such as where the event occurred and what conditions were present during the failure.
These and many other examples are brilliant glimpses of what’s just around the corner. IIoT data is a rich parent value waiting to be extracted. Together, technologies such as edge and fog computing, machine learning and AI can unlock its hidden value.