The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of those concepts that, whenever you hear it for the first time, you have a hard time imagining what it may refer to. However, as the term is more and more widely used, itís now becoming clearer for most people what it actually is: a system of devices and machines connected to one another to collect and transfer data over a network to collaborate on tasks. Yet, as it happens with emerging technologies, understanding this is just the beginning.
Thatís because new tech usually brings along other concepts and ideas. The IoT, for example, opens a wide world of opportunities for a lot of sectors which, in turn, introduces new terms and notions. Case in pointóthe Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). As you can surely deduct, the IIoT is the name that tech enthusiasts, experts, and Java developers are using to refer to the IoT when applied to the industrial sector.
This may or may not be the first time you hear about it. But what you probably donít know is how massive the IIoT already is. With the aid of hardware developers and Java development services, the IIoT is already changing industries of all kinds with its growing presenceóa presence that will only increase in the future. In fact, Morgan Stanley is reporting that the IIoT will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 21.7% to an impressive $627 billion market by 2025.
But letís not get too far ahead of ourselves. We donít need to look that far into the future to understand that the IIoT is playing a crucial role in our current industrial sector. That role can be easily described by some of the biggest IIoT trends that are reshaping the industry right now. Here are some of the most remarkable ones.
1 – The rise of predictive maintenance
Traditionally, itís estimated that maintenance costs range from 15% to 40% of total production costs. Thatís a lot of money! Fortunately, the IIoT is enabling a new possibility that will bring down those costs, reduce downtimes, and shift the maintenanceís paradigm: predictive maintenance. Through the installation of IoT devices and sensors around the industry chain and with the help of machine learning, companies are now detecting potential issues and failures in advance.
This leads to preventive checks that can keep the machines running for longer, prevent breakdowns that could threaten essential industrial processes, and extend the whole chainís life expectancy. The US Department of Energy estimates that this paradigm shift (from reactive maintenance that waits for a machine to break down to a predictive model able to anticipate that) can save up to 40% in total costs.
2 – The increasing presence of cobots
As any attendant of the latest industrial trade shows can surely attest, cobots are becoming a more ubiquitous presence with every passing week. The idea of robots collaborating alongside humans to aid them in repetitive or dangerous tasks is certainly a catching one, as industry executives start to see these collaborative robots as a way to increase the efficiency and reliability of the production cycle.
From robots capable of driving vehicles to cobots that are part of the manufacturing chain, cobots are starting to pop up across many industries. This trend isnít expected to slow down. In fact, itís quite the contrary, as projections estimate that the cobot market will reach the $1 2,303 million by 2025, based on its increasing AI capabilities, the adoption by small and medium businesses and a boost in the investments in the sector.
3 – 5G will bring an IIoT revolution
The introduction of the fifth-generation cellular network technology (5G) is one of the most anticipated tech events of the last few years. Thatís because its introduction will foster changes in a lot of areas, including the IIoT. The high data transfer speed and the low latency of 5G mobile networks are predicted to bring new possibilities and applications for the IIoT.
In fact, Java development teams believe that 5G will enable the creation of real-time monitoring tools powered up by the IoT devices and sensors installed across industries. In other words, 5G will help manufacturers to inspect production and assembly line maintenance in real-time and without any sort of delays. Additionally, the factory automation that depends on those connected devices will also be powered up by 5G, ensuring that the automation takes place in a precisely established time frame.
4 – Boosted digital twin use
The notion of digital twins is another relatively new concept thatís disrupting the industrial sector. Thatís because more and more companies are turning to java development outsourcing firms to design digital replicas of their industrial assets. The goal? To centralize all the available data coming from the entire Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), thus providing easy access to said information.
These digital twins are great to gain insights and quickly understand how the physical assets can be optimized as well as to conduct tests for adjustments on several industrial processes. No wonder why 24% of enterprises are already using it, in a market thatís estimated to grow 33% to reach $17.4 billion in the next 5 years.
5 – Augmented Reality is finding its way in daily tasks
Augmented Reality (AR) or the ability to project digital layers of information on top of the real world, is proving to be very useful for a lot of tasks within different industrial cycles. In fact, there are companies that are using AR for product design, maintenance, quality assurance, logistics, and training of new employees.
For instance, warehouse employees can use AR-powered devices to quickly identify packages and obtain further instructions regarding them. Additionally, maintenance teams are now able to use AR to get insights about the problems at hand, gaining access to better instructions about how to deal with certain issues. In short, AR is powering up teams across industries by getting read of paper instructions and augmenting the amount of actionable information readily available in real case scenarios.
The Industrial Internet of Things is one of those phenomena that slowly but steadily creep up in our public conscience until, one day, it becomes the new standard. Brands from all kinds of industries are already using the power of the Internet of Things to change the way they conduct their normal businesses.
Thatís hardly a surprise. The IIoT can bring a lot of benefits, from increased efficiency to reduce maintenance costs. It can also offer insights and actionable suggestions that can uncover new business opportunities, maximize profits, and bring more safety to the industryís workers. IIoT is already here and isnít going anywhere, as the future looks like it belongs to this new, IoT-powered way of understanding the industry.
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