4 Effective Industrial IOT Applications

Though artificial intelligence is getting a lot of headlines right now, AI technology isn’t much good without data. In the industrial sector, much of that data comes from the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), a series of interconnected systems and sensors that provide continuous real-time information on everything from maintenance needs to inventory management. 

The consumer world is highly familiar with the term ‘IoT’, otherwise known as the Internet of Things. Since those early speculations of the Homes of the Future in early 20th-century Sci-Fi and retrofuturistic movements during the post-war period, we have wanted our alarm clocks to talk to our coffee machines, our washing machines to tell us the cycle had finished via a notification on our TVs. It was all about convenience, and having more and more at our fingertips.

It’s all real now. Silicon Valley giants and tech companies around the world have produced hardware and software that enables consumers to be as tapped into their homes as is currently possible. From Amazon’s Alexa to the Ring Video Doorbell, our homes are becoming smarter and smarter.

While the consumer and their home are often a key area for tech innovation and implementation, we all know that it tends to be the last stop on a technology’s journey, having passed through military and business environments first. And those are our focus today. So what is industrial IOT and its applications?

What is Industrial IoT?

Industrial IoT simply refers to the interconnection of devices, machinery, and systems in industrial settings. Early developments of IOT started in the 1970s when Carnegie Mellon University had a Coke machine located an annoying distance from offices for employees to return empty-handed because it was so popular.

Microswitches were quickly installed so that employees could keep tabs on both the bottles present in the machine and how long they were in there (to determine if they’d be cold or not). As such, the IOT’s first application was born – which was eventually further enhanced and adapted by Walmart in the early 2000s – inventory management.

Effective Industrial IoT Applications

The exchange, collection, analysis, and display of data made possible by IIOT enables businesses to do many things. Below are four examples of effective IIOT Applications:

  1. Real-Time Monitoring and Optimization

‘Real time’ has become an increasingly important frontier for businesses in many industries. IIOT has faced some challenges getting itself running smoothly due to environmental factors that wreak havoc with the sensors and software that produce the data, hindering its real-time capabilities. Development of supporting, infrastructural technologies like IO-Link Wireless has bridged that gap. As such, monitoring and optimizing systems on the go, as close to the moment in which the data is produced, has become more and more possible and effective. Manufacturers, for instance, can streamline their production processes and ensure they overcome bottlenecks and inefficiencies as soon as they emerge.

  1. Maintenance

Just as the real-time data can present opportunities for improvement, it can offer opportunities for prevention. With a knowledge of how much equipment is being used and the process itself, predictions can be made for when a part of or a whole machine could need maintenance or replacement. This is applied in the manufacturing industry, the energy industry, the logistics industry – any industry with machines and corresponding data.

  1. Compliance

Regulatory standards for products, services, and health and safety are rigorous for a reason. Shying away from them is not in a business’s best interest. Data from interconnective devices helps keep businesses operating at the highest standards. From their products and services to the environment their employees work in, nothing can afford to dip – and data is the key to that.

  1. Automation

All tech tends to alleviate humans of tasks, to free them up for ‘value-adding’ responsibilities. Automation is the key to this – as we’ve seen with everything from robotics to AI. IIOT enables, for instance, machines to mine in environments considered too dangerous for humans with no or minimal input from employees stationed remotely. Precise extractions are the gold standard, and IIOT doesn’t fail here either

The Bottom Line

No industry can afford to standstill. What the industrial Internet of things pushes businesses toward is both the contemporary standards and exciting new prospects and benefits in the future.


This article was written by Srikanth from TechiExpert and was legally licensed through the DiveMarketplace by Industry Dive. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.