The Internet of Things (IoT) is becoming increasingly inescapable. Even if you are unsure of what IoT stands for, or what exactly it does, you’re probably reaping the benefits of IoT applications in your daily life. For instance, every time you get excited because your smart watch or fitness tracker tells you that you reached your daily quota of steps – that’s IoT. Or anytime a situation calls for music and you tell one of your home speakers to start playing your favorite song – that’s IoT.
Businesses are beginning to use IoT more frequently as well. From installing security cameras that stream live surveillance video to your mobile phone, to managing the surplus amount of data that is constantly being generated, IoT deployment has become critical.
IoT is here to stay, and to help you become more familiar with it, we’re breaking down the four pillars that make up IoT: devices, data, analytics and connectivity.
Device: Devices are essentially the “things” that make up the Internet of Things. If your business is looking to implement more IoT applications, you’re going to need a wireless solution that can support the many devices that will live on your network, and ensure that your applications run seamlessly and smoothly. Depending on the size of your business, this could be anywhere from hundreds, to thousands of “things” working together on a single network.
Data: One of the main functions of IoT is to gather an immense amount of data to improve operations and functionality. Going back to our previous examples, this data could be made up of hours of surveillance footage, tens of thousands of steps you take during a day, or your entire music library. These examples are basic, gathering information from a single device for an individual. Now imagine the amount of data being collected on an enterprise level – when HVAC, monitoring, security and many other devices are being used – it’s going to be in most facets of businesses and buildings.
Analytics: Now that we have established that there is a large amount of data being collected, it is important to recognize the third pillar of IoT – analytics. Being able to analyze all the information being gathered is what makes IoT applications useful and influential. It’s the data analytics that helps optimize device usage and user benefits.
Last, but definitely not least…
Connectivity: Connectivity is what enables the previous three pillars to work (together). Devices must be connected to transfer data. Data cannot be sent or received without reliable high-bandwidth connectivity that supports real-time data flow from the many devices living on a network. Without connectivity, there would be no data to analyze and no analytics available to optimize systems and create efficiencies. IoT deployments would lack scalability.
This is where a Zinwave DAS with commercial cellular and private LTE capabilities comes into play. DAS is superior to Wi-Fi, because it utilizes cellular technology which allows for far greater coverage and capacity, to provide enterprise-level connectivity. A DAS solution is designed from the ground up to support business-critical applications, while also being able to scale as your IoT deployment grows.
Wi-Fi cannot meet the demands of high-volume and critical IoT applications. It does not have a guaranteed quality of service, so networks that require a certain bandwidth, capacity, or reliability aren’t guaranteed to work as effectively as they would with a Zinwave DAS.
Becoming familiar with the four pillars of IoT will become important as businesses continue to take advantage of the benefits that come from it. Recognizing that connectivity is the foundation, though a good first step, is no longer enough. A business must have a solution that guarantees a quality of service.