What is IoT?

Broadly speaking, the Internet of Things (IoT) is tens of millions (soon to be hundreds of millions) of sensors connected to the internet and sending data to computing environments in the cloud.
From an engineering point of view, there isn’t a single set of standards for IoT. However, there are a number of common Protocols, Transports and Frameworks.

Cloud providers such as Microsoft and Amazon provide various implementations of IoT services in their cloud platforms that adhere to a subset of these standards. If you’re interested in the technical details, you can find more information here: IoT Standards and Protocols.

Applications for IoT are wide-ranging, including smart cities, smart homes, wearables, industrial applications, connected cars, retail, supply chain and farming. Relevant and insightful case studies can be found by clicking here. 

At the very basic level, an IoT device could monitor the temperature in a fridge and send an alert if it moves above or below allowed thresholds. At the other end of the spectrum, a connected vehicle could send a wealth of data including location, driver behaviour, engine telemetry, diagnostics, and crash analytics as well as sensor data from autonomous vehicles.

There is a growing volume of data associated with these devices; the term ‘big data’ goes hand-in-hand with IoT. The challenge is turning this data into useful knowledge and insights that drive decisions for your business. This requires considerable skill and a thorough understanding of the data to interpret it appropriately.

One of the case studies referenced above is about how attaching a pedometer to cows enabled farmers to predict precisely when cows are in heat and thereby dramatically increase the artificial insemination success rate.

Expanded insights come from correlating data from a wide range of sources and looking for patterns and trends. The Smartrak Insights team has been undertaking research and development in this specialist field for the past 12 months, generating insights from the wealth of vehicle telematics data within Smartrak’s EyeQ visual intelligence suite.

Using tools like Power BI, the Smartrak Insights team has created an interactive view of vehicle usage, driver behaviour and trip details for the purpose of making more informed decisions and developing better management practices.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. Working with clients, Smartrak Insights aims to leverage IoT-connected devices and derived data to improve the support of mobile workers, monitor environmental impacts, support compliance, and find efficiencies related to vehicle and asset utilisation.

If you have been thinking about IoT and data analytics, get in touch. We would love to hear your story.

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