Industrial IoT (IIoT) Deserves its own network - Trilliant

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Industrial IoT (IIoT) Deserves its own network

Trying to decide on a network for your IIoT solutions? Consider these integral items before deciding on a path forward.

Written by Jamie Sullivan, Trilliant VP of IIoT for the Americas

Read Time: 3 minutes

About Jamie: Jamie’s main focus is to help cities, utilities and “X” to achieve goals through adoption of new technologies and solutions through partnerships. He has a Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University and an MBA with a focus on information systems and a Digital Six Sigma Green Belt. Jamie comes to Trilliant from GE, AT&T & Motorola where he spent over 15 years in public sector vertical markets in multiple roles working on mobile solutions, applications and wireless infrastructure for public safety, education and government. Jamie has extensive experience working with government and public safety around solution design and integration using his consulting skills and has sat on state broadband council boards and advised top leaders in government.

As cities, enterprises and utilities begin to deploy more and more Industrial IoT (Internet of Things) devices and solutions, it has become clear that these devices and solutions deserve, and quite frankly need, their own network. Consumer and enterprise IoT will mostly live on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, and in limited amounts on cellular, with many carriers touting 5G as the ideal network. While advances in 5G present many exciting opportunities, there are many other factors cities should consider when implementing carrier-based IoT solutions.

Challenges for carrier based IIoT:

  1. Did you know that a personalized phone number is required for every device that’s part of a cellular network? For cities considering smart projects, monitoring changes to cellular networks (like the emergence of 5G) will be a key to long-term success when implementing cellular-based projects.
  2. To solve interoperability issues, many carriers have started to rely on 3rd party solutions to help solve customer issues. With devices being made from multiple manufacturers, this can cause some confusion for providers when issues arise. Deploying a hybrid-wireless network that is solution agnostic, like Trilliant’s Networking Technology, can help solve many of these problems before they happen.
  3. Telecom solutions are closed ecosystems, leading to customers paying based on volume to access their data, which can limit options and raise costs. It is important to deploy a solution that is cost optimized for scale.
  4. The different ecosystems of carrier A vs carrier B create complexity for device and solution manufacturers and can fracture IoT in some places due restraints on what a vendor can support. In the end, this can drive up device costs.
  5. Carrier networks can be overkill for most IIoT solutions in terms of data pipe and needs. Carriers are building networks for heavy data users running streaming services such as Netflix and YouTube and are expecting to use the same pipe to serve IIoT. Saying the same pipe will serve IIoT might be true but it is largely more than is needed and who pays for the overage?
  6. Mission critical data demands reliability. When choosing a network, be sure to focus on one that will provide the most stability to your mission critical needs.
  7. Data access is a critical component to managing a successful network. A hybrid wireless solution that uses multiple points to deliver data provides far more options than only using one type of network connectivity. To achieve the coveted five 9s, reliability and control over the network are critical.
  8. 5G is coming, but carriers will likely not be deploying it on a widescale basis for years to come. To start, these highspeed cellular networks will be in specific areas of larger cities, with the location often being determined by algorithms. The promise of 5G is exciting and provides a lot of new possibilities in terms of reliable connectivity, however, it’s still a ways out from being a consistent source to meet the needs of IIoT because of lack of being ubiquitous.

IIoT needs dedicated infrastructure for mission critical data with the highest reliability because the applications and solutions that will deliver the data are critical for success. This data will drive businesses, saves lives and makes cities smarter and should not compete with Netflix for bandwidth.