If you’ve preset your thermostat while being out of your home, that’s IoT. Anytime you’ve programmed a machine to turn on your lights, or turn up your music, that’s IoT. Even smartwatches that track your sleep and your steps, among other things, are utilizing the IoT.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept that people are increasingly familiar with in their homes, but they are unclear on the benefits of IoT applications for business.
Businesses are looking to bridge the gap between consumer and business IoT through various applications. Installing security cameras that allow you to watch your business from the safety of your home is prime example of such. However, there is so much more to take advantage of when it comes to enterprise IoT.
The capabilities of IoT within the enterprise are virtually endless. More often than not businesses are using IoT to monitor and manage the continuously growing amounts of data generated by connected devices and to automate different tasks. An IoT-enabled business can experience a wide array of benefits that include decreased overhead costs, reduced human intervention and optimized asset utilization, just to name a few.
Data is the key commodity being trafficked by an IoT network. That data, however, has no value if it cannot be shared over a network that supports the real- time flow of hundreds – even thousands – of devices and sensors that live in the network. Critical to the transmission of that data is reliable wireless connectivity. Choosing the right solution to ensure the capacity, reliability and security of the network is key.
Most people assume that Wi-Fi provides ideal infrastructure for an IoT network, possibly because that’s what we’re accustomed to in our homes. The truth is that the technology behind Wi-Fi just doesn’t scale well for enterprise applications. Wi-Fi does not have the capability to support the demands of high-volume IoT applications. It doesn’t have a guaranteed quality of service, so networks that have requirements for high-bandwidth, capacity, or reliability will not be supported by a business’s typical Wi-Fi solution. And perhaps most importantly, the architecture of a Wi-Fi network means it’s inherently less secure – a critical consideration for the enterprise.
This is where enterprise-grade connectivity solutions, like distributed antenna systems (DAS), become necessary. A DAS solution provides the connectivity required to support business-critical applications while providing a high-capacity and secure infrastructure.
IoT is only going to become more pervasive, and will play an undeniable role in modernization across all industries. It’s important not only to set your sights on how you will leverage IoT technology, but also how you will enable it.