Unleash Business Insights & Opportunities with IoT Data Analytics (Interview with Losant)

IoT data analytics

BehrTech Blog

Unleash Business Insights & Opportunities with IoT Data Analytics

An Interview with Losant


The success of IoT hinges on the ability to not only aggregate massive amounts of data but also process and translate it into actionable information that can help tackle real business problems. The latter is exactly what an IoT application enablement platform has to offer. Such a platform provides users with a tool to swiftly deploy an IoT application and draw insights from their data from the ground up without requiring years-long expertise. This week, Nugeen Aftab from Losant joins us to discuss the importance of IoT data analytics and how an application enablement platform can help enterprises realize the value of their data.

[bctt tweet=”Losant’s Nugeen Aftab discusses the role of data analytics in IoT and how an application enablement platform can help enterprises realize the value of their data.”]

1. Tell us about Losant. How do you position yourself in the IoT space? Who are your customers?

Losant is an IoT application enablement platform that provides enterprises with a complete toolset to create their own IoT applications. Losant itself is a horizontal platform, but we work primarily with companies in the industrial sector, with telecommunications providers, and with companies looking to implement smart space initiatives.

2. What’s the role of data analytics in IoT?

One of the biggest benefits of using IoT in a solution is that it enables companies to analyze and react to information from their environment. Creating a copy of the physical world doesn’t do any good if we can’t derive insights from it to then act on them. Companies implementing IoT solutions into their companies or product lines should look to analyze the data coming through for maximum output. Losant specifically helps customers react to data in real-time. Our strengths lie in real-time stream processing, but we also have historical data processing capabilities available to our customers through our integration with Jupyter notebooks. Losant has written extensively about this topic. We released a guide last year that covers the value that IoT data has. You can access it here.

3. How does an application enablement platform differ from existing enterprise systems? What is the interplay between these two?

Existing enterprise systems are meant to solve challenges within one function of an organization. A CRM system is used to help keep sales and marketing efforts organized. An ERP system is used as the backbone for the financial management of a company. An application enablement platform can touch many different functions within a company and can be used to solve a plethora of challenges. Our tools can be used to power operations or supply chain applications or can be the backbone for customer-facing, revenue-generating applications. Today, Losant has multiple integrations already in place with existing enterprise systems so that customers can send to or receive data from Losant into their existing ecosystem.

4. What do you think are the top use cases of an IoT application enablement platform for businesses? How does it help businesses monetize their data?

The tricky part about finding a top use case for IoT is that IoT is a technology, not an industry. Thus, it can be used in a variety of applications. When customers are implementing IoT in their companies, they could be looking at one of three reasons: to increase revenue through new or improved offerings; to decrease costs throughout their operations, or to mitigate risk for customers or employees. With everything going on in the world today, during the COVID pandemic, companies are putting more emphasis on automating their processes and reducing human elements in the process. For many companies, the way to do that is through IoT.

IoT can help businesses to monetize their data, that’s for sure. For instance, Losant works with quite a few companies that are pulling telemetry data on machinery they sell to their customers. This data helps the companies provide better service, which makes happier customers. This data, however, can also be packaged up into an application that is then sold as a service to customers, giving customers the ability to view and react to data and controls themselves.

5. What are the key industrial/technical requirements for an IoT implementation?

This can vary significantly depending on the project. When looking at an IoT implementation as a whole, there are three core components that need to be addressed in any project: hardware, connectivity, and software. Losant provides the software piece of the stack through our public cloud offering or through other types of deployments, but having some knowledge around hardware and connectivity is beneficial in order to make the best choices when it comes to sensors/gateways and connectivity platforms. When it comes to working within Losant, there aren’t any specific skill requirements, but it certainly helps to have a basic understanding of web development. Software engineers and software architects use Losant daily, but Losant is a low-to-no-code development platform so anyone can start to build applications.

6. How do you see the role of wireless technologies like LPWAN/ MYTHINGS impacting IoT data analytics?

Having LPWAN technology opens up a plethora of opportunities that weren’t available before. Over the last couple of years, LPWAN has become a more prominent technology in IoT use cases, especially, as we’ve seen, in industrial and smart space use cases. We chose to partner with MYTHINGS because of the flexibility that the hardware-agnostic BehrTech platform provides—this aligns very closely with the agnostic and scalable nature of our platform as well.

7. How will Losant and BehrTech work together to benefit industrial and commercial users?

Customers utilizing both of our technologies should expect an efficient and easy process in building productio-level applications. Getting data from the MYTHINGS base stations into Losant has been proven to be easy and scalable. With our partnership, customers should feel like there is one less step and one less area for complications in the tedious process of creating an end-to-end IoT solution!


Nugeen Aftab
Nugeen is the Partnerships Growth Manager at Losant, building a partnership ecosystem that helps Losant provide customers with the best that IoT and application enablement have to offer. Throughout all of her work experiences, Nugeen’s passion is using technology for positive innovation, which is how she first got involved in the IoT industry. When she’s not travelling for work, she’s travelling for pleasure and trying every new cuisine she can.


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How Indoor Air Quality Monitoring Transforms Commercial Buildings (Interview with atlasen)

indoor air quality monitoring

BehrTech Blog

How Indoor Air Quality Monitoring Transforms Commercial Buildings

An Interview with atlasen


Environmental control, especially indoor air quality monitoring, has gained growing importance in modern building operations, especially with the new tide of advanced sensor and wireless technologies. This week, Dr. Jihyun Park, Founder and CEO at atlasen, shares with us her expert insights on IoT adoption in the commercial real estate sector, the benefits and requirements for an indoor air quality monitoring solution, and the future outlook of the smart building market.

1. Tell us about atlasen. What are your products and vision, who are your customers?

atlasen develops and provides innovative indoor environmental quality (IEQ) management system using IoT equipment and artificial intelligence (AI) analytics engine. We value the humans-first principle and prioritize occupants’ feedback in real-time IEQ management.

For contemporary building controls, IEQ management is often employed as an essential component to optimize building energy management. atlasen brings a new perspective on this part. In particular, user satisfaction in buildings is prioritized over energy usage. As evidenced by our studies, the satisfaction level of building occupants has a positive impact on actual energy use. In some cases, lower satisfaction levels due to overcooling in summers or overheating in winters could lead to a detrimental effect on energy savings as planned.

Our system is utilized in the building automation system, indoor air quality monitoring market, and building energy use optimization. Our main clients include real estate building properties groups, electric power companies, and leading energy system integration companies who are the leader of smart buildings.

[bctt tweet=”The competence in data transmission and network security will be pivotal factors for IoT success in the commercial real estate industry.”]

2. How do you see the demand for IoT adoption in the commercial real estate industry today? What are the key drivers behind it?

The IoT-integrated smart built environment leverages the data science to enhance user experience in buildings, and, as a result, offers added-values to prospective customers. For instance, the operational costs of buildings could be reduced drastically by learning from dynamic occupants’ end-use patterns. Positive ROI outcomes could easily offset the implementation costs induced by IoT deployment in a relatively short term. With an increasing interest in health and well-being in buildings, IoT investment offers an additional advantage to evaluate the quality of indoor built environments and deliver long-term impactful applications. For instance, improving the health of workplaces could lead to reductions in sick leaves and attrition. The readiness of communication technology is envisaged to accelerate the adoption of IoT for the commercial real estate industry in the foreseeable future. In particular, the competence in data transmission and network security will be pivotal factors for success.

3. What is the importance of indoor air quality monitoring in smart buildings?

Good levels of indoor air quality (IAQ) can improve the health, comfort, and well-being of building occupants and reduce risks of developing respiratory symptoms. However, IAQ problems can be challenging to diagnose and often involve the intricate combination of concurrent IAQ conditions. For instance, carbon dioxide is odorless and colorless, and as such occupants cannot easily discern the level of concentration -usually the higher the concentration level, the higher the rate of sick building syndrome symptoms. In the contemporary sustainable design practice, green building rating systems, such as WELL, LEED, BREAM, and many others, consider IAQ as one of the critical indexes and stipulate exposure thresholds for pollutants to ensure the healthy indoor environment requirements to be met.

Smart buildings are envisaged to harvest the power of the IoT network to monitor critical environmental indexes, such as IAQ, to transform the way buildings are operated. The objective is to deliver a human-centric, healthy and affluent indoor environment that improves occupants’ health, comfort and satisfaction to the highest standard.

[bctt tweet=”Smart buildings are envisaged to harvest the power of IoT networks to monitor critical environmental indexes like IAQ, to transform the way buildings are operated.”]

4. What benefits can property owners and facility managers harness from implementing an indoor air quality monitoring solution?

In the holistic building performance evaluation, indoor air quality is often considered as a critical factor among others, including thermal, lighting and acoustic quality. Maintaining good IAQ can improve occupants’ comfort and satisfaction levels. Property owners and facility managers gain benefits from satisfied occupants as a result of enhanced indoor air quality that contributes to holistic indoor environmental quality. Continous indoor air quality monitoring will provide actionable insights for facility managers to prevent problems at a fraction of the expense and effort that will be required to solve them.

5. What does an indoor air quality monitoring architecture look like?

atlasen’s IEQ system is designed to benchmark user satisfaction with associated environmental data. Ultimately, our system prompts users, such as facility managers or building owners, with actionable guidelines to tackle problems associated with low satisfaction levels and comfort. The underlying data processing workflow involves three major steps: (1) indoor environmental quality data acquisition, (2) user satisfaction benchmarking and end-use survey, (3) indoor environment management guidelines output. To assess the occupant satisfaction level, we integrate multiple evaluation metrics, including 1) building regulations and recommended levels for the healthy indoor environment and certifications, 2) outdoor environmental conditions, 3) building facility systems, 4) occupants’ basic information under the circumstance, 5) occupant real-time survey on satisfaction.

6. What are the sensor connectivity requirements in this context?

atlasen sensors provide built-in functions to collect real-time IEQ data and require a dependable network to communicate with our cloud-based diagnosis platform in real-time. Our consideration for IoT communication is to ensure data transmission accuracy and maintain the highest network security standard. When deploying sensors in large buildings, the effective coverage of the sensor network will require the controllable accessibility in context while retaining the efficiency of data acquisition and interoperation in motion with scalable capacity.

7. From your perspective, what makes MYTHINGS the right solution? How does it outperform legacy communication options?

atlasen’s LEO (AT04) delivers high-performance IEQ assessments with its extremely compact dimensions in its class. LEO can measure up to 15 different IEQ conditions simultaneously in real-time, including Temperature, Humidity, Carbon dioxide (CO2), Carbon monoxide (CO), Particulate Matters (PM10, PM2.5, PM1.0), Total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOC), Formaldehyde (HCHO), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), Ozone (03), Ammonia (NH3), Illuminance, Sound Level and occupancy detection. In some cases, more than 100 sensors can be deployed on one floor. MYTHINGS provides robust and effective wireless communication for our sensors in action to deliver streamlined real-time data acquisition and facilitate data integration for the contextual analysis. Synchronizing all sensor data at a large scale is unquestionably the essential challenge to accelerate the uptake of IoT. In particular, IEQ data acquisition and transmission depend heavily on the effective network coverage provided by the chosen communication protocol. MYTHINGS addresses this critical data interoperation challenge through its high scalability and extensive coverage.

8. What predictions do you have for the smart building market in the next 3-5 years?

The paradigm of a smart building is not ‘green or energy’ anymore. ‘Healthy or Human-centric’ built environment is a top priority in the smart building market. Smart buildings are evolving and will continue to evolve with a human-centric controlling system. With the advancements of information and communication technologies, we envisage a broad spectrum of IoT equipment inside buildings to improve our living quality and boost productivity while minimizing environmental impacts. Both sensing accuracy and communication efficiency are essential. Meanwhile, ensuring cybersecurity to protect privacy is gaining a growing interest among all and will become even more prominent when scaling up such technology for broader society. Resolving challenges arising from these considerations will serve as the key to success for sustainable market growth. From our experience worldwide, we at atlasen, believe that a building can make people healthy or sick, happy or sad, creative or lethargic. An anti-virus or protective indoor environment can be one of the key issues. Smart buildings will play a leading role in making our lives healthier and more affluent.

Indoor Air Quality Monitoring - Atlasen

Dr. Jihyun Park is the Founder and CEO of atlasen and associate lecturer at the Sheffield Hallam University, UK. Dr. Park is a Building Scientist holding Ph.D. in Building Performance and Diagnostics from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), U.S., Certified Passive House Consultant (CPHC) and LEED AP in Building Design and Construction. Her passion is to support and improve design, management and performance of the workspace, through profiling the physical and environmental quality of existing built environments to correlate with user satisfaction.

About atlasen

The atlasen platform incorporates continuous IEQ sensing, including Air, Thermal, Lighting, Acoustic and Spatial, and user satisfaction assessments using the innovative prediction model coupled with expert walkthrough assessments, to provide added values to the built environment.


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Exploring Wireless Connectivity Trends in Industrial IoT with Texas Instruments

industrial wireless connectivity

BehrTech Blog

Exploring Wireless Connectivity Trends in Industrial IoT

Five Questions for Mattias Lange, General Manager of Connectivity at Texas Instruments


Wireless connectivity is a key IoT building block and an enabler of technologies like machine learning and artificial intelligence. In industrial contexts, the demand and requirements for wireless communications have drastically evolved in recent years as new technologies pave the way to previously unseen possibilities. This week, Mattias Lange, General Manager of Connectivity at Texas Instruments shares with us an insider’s view on the latest developments in IoT and industrial wireless connectivity and what that means to businesses.

1. Tell us about Texas Instruments. What is your focus and vision in the IoT space?

More than a decade ago, before the Internet of Things (IoT) became a buzzword, TI had a simple idea: make it easier for developers to add radio technologies such as Wi-Fi®, Ethernet, Sub-1 GHz, Bluetooth® Low Energy, Thread and Zigbee, to their embedded applications and have them work together seamlessly. The prospect was mind-blowing. Wireless connectivity would open doors for developers, allowing them to collect data and provide an unlimited range of new services.

Today, thousands of companies use a variety of connectivity standards as the foundation for their connected devices. Still, as I travel to meet with developers around the world, I hear a common question: Is the IoT trend really taking off as it should?

The fact is people expect electronic devices to have wireless capabilities. Announcements of large IoT investments are made daily. As companies in more traditional, established spaces like metering and manufacturing become more automated, they are building IoT strategies and overlaying connectivity to modernize and streamline their operations.

As often happens when transformational changes occur, there is an expectation that they will happen faster than they do. And when the change finally arrives, its impact is often larger than expected. This is where we will see the real impact of IoT in the long term, and we need to remain nimble to adapt to ever-evolving market needs and demand.

2. How do you see the importance of wireless connectivity in the next industrial revolution?

The single most important innovation in business and commerce is the ability to move and analyze massive amounts of data to drive informed decisions. Wireless networking is at the heart of this data migration, and the ability to bridge the last mile of data through connected IoT devices is a vital part of the data cycle.

Imagine if you were able to create simpler, smaller designs while increasing performance and lowering costs. Imagine if data could be processed quickly and seamlessly to maximize efficiency.

As we look to the future, the IoT landscape will continue to evolve and technology will likely continue to significantly change and advance along with it. The impact of this evolution will mean increased global demand for innovation excellence across multiple industries.

Being able to anticipate customer needs, adapt to industry trends and swiftly adopt the right new technologies will be even more vital to the life and longevity of businesses than ever before. With all of this in mind, the multimillion dollar question still remains: Will you evolve with it or be left behind?

You might also like: [E-book] Wireless Connectivity for Massive-Scale IoT Deployments

3. What are the common roadblocks to wireless implementations in industrial settings?

While communication speed has been a priority for decades, there’s been a stronger focus lately toward long range and low power connected devices. The networks that long-range, low-power devices use are often referred to as low-power wide-area networks (LPWANs). Examples of applications that benefit from LPWANs are environmental sensors like temperature and air quality and battery-powered flow meter sensors for water, heat and gas.

These sensors typically communicate very infrequently – with minutes to hours between each engagement. For such applications, the technology is optimized for long-range radio-frequency (RF) communication at the expense of high data throughput.

Today, LPWAN solutions have a lack of scalability and are less robust due to interference issues and coexistence problems with other radio networks. Many existing solutions are not able to offer very high data delivery consistency over time. Battery life is also limited due to inefficient transmission methods.

[bctt tweet=”While communication speed has been a priority for decades, there’s been a stronger focus lately toward long range and low power in industrial settings.”]

4. How does LPWAN help to overcome these roadblocks and fuel industrial IoT adoption?

TI is one of the founding members of the recently formed MIOTY Alliance, which serves as the governing body of the MIOTY LPWAN solution. The MIOTY standard offers a complete long-range and low-power solution for worldwide Sub-1 GHz communication.

MIOTY can help IoT developers overcome design challenges such as:

  • Difficulty meeting long-range requirements
  • Achieving long battery lifetime
  • Performance degradation in high-node-count networks

MIOTY has many inherent advantages, including:

  • A combination of coding and narrowband operation enables long range RF communication.
  • Reduced packet overhead and efficient coding result in current saving.
  • More robust communication and larger networks are possible due to the telegram splitting

The MIOTY solution offers a star network for low-power end/leaf nodes, as well as a gateway solution for cloud connectivity. As of today, MIOTY offers a private network, but the expectation is that third parties will also offer a network solution as a service.

The MIOTY standard operates in license-free bands around the world. There are no costs involved in using the radio spectrum, unlike narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) solutions.

5. Where do you see the industrial wireless market headed in 2020 and beyond?

MIOTY is truly the LPWAN solution for the future. It offers scalable, robust network performance, which is a core requirement for industrial IoT. In addition, the MIOTY standard provides low power due to effective system architecture. When combined with the low power SimpleLink RF SoC, this architecture makes long battery life possible. As the IoT landscape continues to grow and evolve, the MIOTY standard and the SimpleLink™ platform create a viable connectivity option for worldwide Sub-1 GHz communication.

About MIOTY Alliance

The MIOTY Alliance was formed this year to combine the expertise of the world’s leading tech companies to develop a complete ecosystem of IoT technologies that makes the MIOTY connectivity protocol more accessible, interoperable and consumable for companies worldwide. Fraunhofer, BehrTech, Diehl, Texas Instruments, Ragsol, Stackforce and WIKA have joined the MIOTY Alliance to achieve this goal.

Find out more about the MIOTY Alliance here.

Mattias Lange
Mattias Lange is the General Manager for Connectivity at TI, which includes the SimpleLink™ microcontroller (MCU) platform. Mattias focuses on defining and executing TI’s strategy and product roadmap for wired and wireless MCUs enabling IoT deployment for industrial and automotive markets.


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MIOTY Alliance – What It Is and Why You Should Join

MIOTY Alliance

BehrTech Blog

The MIOTY Alliance – What It Is and Why You Should Join

MIOTY Alliance

There’s a new technology alliance in town, and it’s led by some heavy hitters in research and technology. But, before we dive straight into what the MIOTY Alliance is all about, let’s take a step back to review the wireless IoT landscape and the state of low-power wide area networks (LPWAN) in 2020.

Wireless IoT Connectivity in 2020

Manufacturing, mining, oil and gas, smart cities and smart buildings are completely focused on connectivity these days. The Internet of Things (IoT) has impacted our lives and transformed these industries over the past decade, and we expect even more wireless innovations to make their mark in 2020 and beyond. Among the fastest-growing wireless technologies are low-power wide area networks. LPWAN possesses unique characteristics that make it particularly attractive for industrial and commercial markets. Nevertheless, there are several challenges associated with legacy solutions like LoRa, Sigfox and NB-IoT that limit their long-term viability and ability to enable critical IoT applications like predictive maintenance, environmental monitoring and worker safety. 

Enter MIOTY – A New LPWAN Protocol

Developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits, MIOTYTM (TS-UNB) is a new LPWAN protocol designed to combat the complexities of massive industrial and commercial IoT deployments. At the core of the protocol is patented Telegram Splitting technology, which is uniquely built to conquer the interference, scalability and mobile challenges of existing LPWAN technologies like LoRa, Sigfox and NB-IoT. It is also the only LPWAN protocol standardized by ETSI (TS-103357). Watch this video to see how it works.

Introducing the MIOTY Alliance

Developing a powerful technology like MIOTY is only half the battle, successfully bringing it to market is equally challenging. That’s why Fraunhofer, BehrTech, Diehl, Texas Instruments, Ragsol, Stackforce and WIKA have joined the MIOTY Alliance. The MIOTY Alliance was formed to, of course, promote the use of MIOTY, but more importantly combine the expertise of the world’s leading tech companies to develop a complete ecosystem of IoT technologies that make this powerful connectivity protocol more accessible, interoperable and consumable for companies worldwide.

What’s available on the market so far?

In 2019, BehrTech (that’s us!) introduced the first family of wireless connectivity products and solutions leveraging MIOTY, called MYTHINGSTM.  MYTHINGS is purpose-built for complex industrial and commercial IoT sensor networks; providing the most robust, scalable and mobile connectivity on the market. MYTHINGS’ open end-to-end architecture, allows users to choose their own devices, integrate with their own systems and processes as well as manage their own network with MYTHINGS Central; an all-in-one network management platform for device on and off-boarding, cloud/backend integration and network troubleshooting. Watch this video to learn how MYTHINGS works. 

Wireless Technology for IoT

Why should you join the MIOTY Alliance? 

The biggest barrier to IoT adoption and success is inaccessibility to data. There are numerous innovative technologies that promise to deliver new business insights and value with data analytics and AI, however those technologies are worthless if you cannot reliably and securely access the data in the first place. The success of the IoT industry is dependent on reliable connectivity, which remains a huge obstacle for numerous industries like mining, manufacturing and oil gas. These industries are faced with complex and often remote environments where traditional wired and wireless connectivity options are not feasible. In addition, many legacy assets, machines, and facilities are not designed to connect beyond plant networks, creating huge data silos. Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs) represent the fastest growing IoT communication technology. And there is no other LPWAN protocol available that provides more robust, mobile and scalable connectivity needed for the flood of IoT applications. By joining the MIOTY Alliance and partnering with members like BehrTech, we can provide bigger and better wireless IoT connectivity solutions for our industrial and commercial customers worldwide, while driving our businesses deeper into existing markets and creating entirely new market opportunities.

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ERP and IoT Integration: Opportunities, Challenges and Future Prospects (Interview with Orange Oranges)

ERP and IoT Integration

BehrTech Blog

ERP and IoT Integration: Opportunities, Challenges and Future Prospects

An Interview with Orange Oranges Technologies

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) plays a critical role in streamlining processes and improving business operations across industries. Today, the Internet of Things (IoT) and massive data influxes are stirring up the ERP landscape, introducing new possibilities for operational excellence and workflow automation. This week we sat down with Atul Sali – the Cofounder and Director of Orange Oranges Technologies to discuss the current ERP landscape and the opportunities and challenges of synergy between ERP and IoT, as well as the role of wireless connectivity in its integration.

1. Tell us about Orange Oranges Technologies. What is your vision, who are your customers, what verticals do you target?

At Orange Oranges, we are focused on business process consulting, application integration, human resource solutions (SAP) and other web technologies. Our vision is to be the one-stop-shop for IoT and enterprise software integrations to fuel data into any type of ERP system. We envision ourselves to drive the business process consulting and human resource management side of the technology. We have a large customer base in manufacturing, energy and utilities, lumber, supply chain logistics and transportation.

2. How do you see the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) landscape today?

Today’s ERP landscape is highly complex, and part of this is due to the breakneck pace of technology. A small-scale ERP implementation often takes at least three months to complete, while a larger scale project could require more than two years. Meanwhile, there could be significant technology changes occurring alongside the two-year implementation. The rise of low-cost cloud computing and SAAS solutions also make marketing ERP products challenging.

SAAS allows for monthly pricing based on the shared CPU / DISK / MEMORY business model. So, the cost is much lower than traditional on-premise ERP systems. Plus, there is no hardware setup cost, and the installation time is very short as any server can be provisioned as well as decommissioned with just a few clicks. For smaller businesses with simple processes, SAAS-based ERPs are a great option, since they don’t have to worry about server hardware, power backup, installations and related insurance. On the other hand, for larger businesses, cloud-based ERPs often do not fulfill all features and functionality requirements as the on-premises versions. Customizing cloud-based ERPs can also be challenging due to the shared ERP software code at the backend.

3. Why are ERP systems important to industrial operations?

Centralized business information is key to all industrial applications. Today, business consolidations happen at a faster rate, as new technologies enhance oversight through a higher degree of automation and the reduced need for manpower. With increased consolidations, ERP systems are critical to the effective management of large-scale applications.

4. How is IoT impacting ERP systems?

IoT is cutting down the time to implement system monitoring and data collection technologies. Wireless solutions that are simple to deploy enable easier and less expensive access to data to drive higher revenues. In the near future, improvements in IoT technologies are also poised to reduce ERP implementation costs.

5. Please specify some examples where combining IoT and ERP could fuel operational excellence and business growth.

In the chemical industry, there is a host of parameters that need to be monitored 24/7. Information like temperature, pressure, humidity and vibrations in the manufacturing plants is currently collected both manually and using wired systems. This data is fed into ERP applications to enable round-the-clock monitoring of industrial systems. Effective monitoring opens opportunities for improving efficiencies and lowering insurance costs. Until now, all of this has been done in a semi-automated manner. Applying IoT could change the game with fully automated data collection.

6. What are the current challenges of integrating ERP systems with IoT?

The biggest challenge is the lack of trust in IoT as a relatively new technology trend. Data security is a top concern and companies heavily investing in ERP are very wary of the accuracy and reliability of the data coming from an IoT system. After almost three decades since their introduction, ERP systems are so well-oiled that a single record could represent a few million dollars. So, it’s simply too risky to trust anything new. In a large-scale ERP implementation, nobody wants to save money unless it is millions of dollars. ERP systems should last at least five years on the low end.

7. What is the role of connectivity in bringing IoT and ERP together?

System connectivity is paramount, as everyone working in ERP knows data integration is the backbone of an organization. Walmart, Amazon, Apple, Best Buy, Costco and many other organizations have achieved great success by creating best-of-breed, data-driven supply chain systems where data flows are fast and seamless. Artificial Intelligence thrives on data and IoT is the key to unlocking and aggregating massive data. Right now, system integration works in all ERP layers from data sources to the executive summary and incorporation of external parties like the government.

IoT connectivity simplifies data transmission and allows us to tap into previously inaccessible data. This fuels a vast array of analytics and AI applications. In ERP, there’s a simple rule – the better connected we are, the less business logic and system engineering work needs to be done. Besides, bad connectivity means that fines might need to be paid due to the lack of information.

8. What are the connectivity requirements in this context?

In the ERP context, the ability to gather as much logical information on the edge device offers significant benefits. With that said, ERP systems heavily rely on data being reliable to execute important tasks like auto-scheduling of predictive maintenance or auto-ordering of spare parts and so on. In the ERP world, there is a huge emphasis on auto-scheduling as many processes as possible. Also, due to the mission-critical nature and heavy automation involved, data privacy and security are imperative. In mining, for example, a data breach incident could cause the loss of thousands of dollars.

At the same time, longer communication range is certainly a useful and much needed aspect in various industries like lumber, chemical, or fleet management where there are huge distances to cover. Most of today’s ERP systems are cloud-based, so being able to send data directly to the cloud is very helpful. In addition, since cloud ERPs are highly scalable, the ability to scale hardware systems in parallel is paramount. As new fleets or new manufacturing plants are added, easy and seamless integration of new IoT devices and systems is highly valuable.

9. How do you see the ERP and IoT trends moving forward?

Very soon IoT will be embedded with ERP applications. I wouldn’t be surprised if, for example, IoT data fed into supply chain ERP systems to make automated ordering a reality. As of now, we’re still in the early stage of the IoT and ERP integration, but this will soon take off as edge computing gets easier and smarter. We are also going back to the mainframe-style, single ERP system, as cloud computing and high-power systems make it easier. IoT is simply the most logical step and it will go through the roof as mobile revolutions did in the last decade. I am concerned about data security and privacy, but at the same time excited about a fully connected world.

10. How do Orange Oranges Technologies and BehrTech work together to accelerate IoT and ERP integration?

At Orange Oranges, we have more than 20 years of experience in integrating with various ERP systems like SAP, JDE, Peoplesoft, Oracle, Baan, Concur, Workday, on-prem, cloud or hybrid – using various integration technologies including webMethods, Oracle, SAP EDI, EDI, JSON, XML, SOAP and REST. For us on the upstream side is feeding data into analytics, data warehouse and management platforms – though more and more ERP systems are coming with built-in data analytics tools nowadays. On the downstream side is collecting data with IoT technology and integrating it into ERP applications.

BehrTech brings to the table what most ERP vendors need including a best-in-class IoT wireless connectivity and a versatile device management software to forward data to any required backend and server. Having BehrTech as our go-to IoT partner, we will be able to work IoT into any ERP systems and scale the integration as needed. Also, with our global experience from India to North America, we know how to manage and work in an outsourcing situation, if required. Together, Orange Oranges and BehrTech could help businesses bring multi-layer technologies together to improve different aspects of their operations – from supply chain and logistics to human resource management.

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Why Businesses Should Embrace IoT for Off-road Fleet Management

IoT for Fleet Management

BehrTech Blog

Why Businesses Should Embrace IoT for Off-road Fleet Management

An Interview with Applied-IoT


The Internet of Things (IoT) is weaving its way into every industry, bringing tremendous opportunities to enhance operational efficiency and reliability. Among the leading industrial applications that benefit from IoT is asset and fleet management. In a campus-style production facility, vehicles, equipment and special tools are geographically scattered with low levels of coordination. The lack of asset visibility is conducive to unplanned downtime and dampened productivity. This week, our partner – Applied IoT has shared with us some fresh insights into how IoT is poised to transform off-road fleet management at enclosed industrial campuses.

1. Tell us about Applied IoT. What is your vision, who are your customers, what verticals do you target etc.

Applied-IoT provides technology and digital solutions for the industrial sector. Our clients operate in harsh environments, where reliable communication networks are often out of reach. They manage extensive and varied assets including powered vehicles, mobile and fixed assets, equipment, tools and raw materials as well as people exposed to multiple worksite hazards in mines, oil fields and industrial plants.

Applied-IoT engineers asset visibility solutions purpose-built for improved operational transparency to reduce costs and downtime, improve security and optimize asset utilization. Our industrial clients can rely on our rugged hardware, reliable communication technology and customized software and dashboards.

We strongly believe in “intelligent data” – selecting the relevant information as stepping stones for enlightened decision-making rather than delivering an overwhelming and counterproductive amount of big data.

We also firmly believe that the customer should control and own their proprietary data. That’s why our approach gathers asset data on-site and transfers it directly to customers’ private servers or cloud-hosted services, as requested.

2. Talking about fleet management, what are the main challenges faced by off-road fleet operators across industries today?

The first challenge lies in the remoteness of the areas where fleets are operated. Examples include forests, mining sites, construction areas poorly serviced by Telcom operators. In the Internet of Things sector, global network providers are progressively extending their coverage. However, many zones still remain in the dark or are characterized by challenging terrain conditions like inside an industrial plant or factory.

The high diversity of assets grouped under a customer’s fleet is also a challenge in achieving operational awareness and optimal asset use. Besides vehicles and mobile heavy equipment, many non-mobile assets like air compressors and other unpowered machinery must also be constantly monitored. On top of that, there may be a need to track consumables or even smaller items. Often times, an operator faces disparities in utilization and maintenance intervals.

3. How is IoT revolutionizing off-road fleet management?

New-generation assets are embedded with telematics devices that can connect to Telcom networks. Nevertheless, the average off-road fleet also incorporates older vehicles not equipped with communication technologies, as well as assets that may have a motor but are not self-powered.

IoT enables fleet operators to connect a wide assortment of assets to the same platform, providing comprehensive information on their location, usage and status. This full visibility presents a clear opportunity to spotlight existing bottlenecks and improve operational efficiency, which directly affects companies’ bottom line.

4. What tangible business benefits does IoT bring to off-road fleet management?

IoT provides instant transparency over your business through custom dashboards and alert systems. An industrial manager can see where his assets are and whether they are being used consistently and effectively. This knowledge empowers decision makers to fine tune their workflow, schedule precise maintenance intervals and optimize operational deployment and cost.

5. What are the challenges of deploying an off-road fleet management solution?

The physical design of Industrial IoT sensors and devices must be rugged in order to withstand harsh environments (weather, temperature, vibrations, shocks) in outdoor and remote areas. They should also be protected from accidental removal or attempted theft.

In addition, the IIoT system must be scalable and can easily accommodate additional devices at all times, without being overloaded. As your business and fleet grow, so must the visibility system. It must also be versatile enough to allow industrial clients to add next-generation assets or sensors to enhance their full optimization system.

6. What are the building blocks of a successful end-to-end off-road fleet optimization solution?

A robust, reliable communications technology that can support several hundreds of assets connected within a small area, while being able to withstand harsh industrial environments (weather, vibration, shock, temperature etc.).

7. How do Applied-IoT and BehrTech work together to improve off-road fleet management across industry verticals?

Applied-IoT and BehrTech both strive to bring visibility to the industrial sector, where many businesses have been hindered by obscure operations, costly breakdowns and speculation-based workflows. Both companies believe that remote industrial areas can greatly benefit from operational awareness, which is key to lowering costs & optimizing day-to-day activities.

This common understanding of industrial requirements led us to establish a strong partnership to develop industry-worthy products. The superior coverage and range capability of the MYTHINGS architecture is set to provide a cost-effective solution, even in remote areas. With MIOTY LPWAN technology, MYTHINGS also allows customers to incorporate any additional sensor or monitoring requirements to the platform, making it highly flexible and scalable.

Applied-IoT wields extensive experience across multiple industrial sectors including mining, oil & gas, manufacturing and maintenance repair operations (MRO) for aerospace. We provide the required expertise to tailor technical solutions to the customer’s needs.

Joint solutions by BehrTech and Applied-IoT will enable operators to track and monitor a vast range of assets, both large self-powered vehicles and smaller accessory items, to ensure their availability, utilization and effectiveness.

Operational Visibility with BehrTech and Applied-IoT

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An Insider’s View: Industrial IoT and LPWAN in Manufacturing

LPWAN in Manufacturing

BehrTech Blog

An Insider’s View: Industrial IoT and LPWAN in Manufacturing

Industrial manufacturing is leading the way in IoT and digitalization, and will drive the most IoT spending by 2020. This week, we interviewed the team at Counsel Group Frankfurt (CGF) – an international expert in Industrial IoT (IIoT) implementation and IT counseling services, to get the inside scoop on the adoption of IIoT and how Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) can advance digitalization in manufacturing.

Our Interviewees:

1. Dirk Brusch – Managing Director
2. Tom Corbit – Business Development Manager
3. Harald Rupp – Technology Lead IoT and Security

Q1. What are your thoughts on the demand and adoption of IoT in manufacturing today?

The size of manufacturing environments can vary greatly, especially within the automotive industry where you have body, paint, and assembly shops. Although production control, equipment services and building management systems already exist, they are proprietary and expensive to replace.

The other challenge with these systems is that only a small portion of the generated data is actually used and most of the data isn’t accessible for analysis. While an IoT deployment may seem daunting, the end result will allow you to collect and analyze the critical data you need to improve business processes and reduce costs. Businesses are now utilizing IoT data for innumerable applications like predictive maintenance, monitoring of power consumption changes and for threshold trigger points in temperature, humidity, vibration and air particles.

Q2. What challenges are hindering the deployment of IIoT solutions?

The biggest challenge for companies is getting off to the right start. Many companies find it difficult to move beyond the IoT proof-of-concept stage because they cannot tie quantifiable metrics to a clear business value. Often times, organizations just don’t have mature IoT approaches. Due to excessive expectations and poor planning, many projects and POCs have not made it into production. CIOs looking to adopt IoT, should prepare their organizations by implementing and committing to a common enterprise IoT framework.

At CGF we’re guided by the principle Think Big – Start Small – Scale Fast.

Q3. What connectivity challenges are manufacturers facing? Why do existing solutions not suffice?

Power efficiency is a central theme for IoT connectivity solutions. Frequent battery replacement and disposal blow up Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) while breaking corporate green factors. High power consumption also requires the use of more expensive batteries.

Cellular networks (e.g. GSM, LTE etc.) and legacy non-cellular wireless technologies are not ideal to connect low power devices distributed over large geographical areas. In addition, the range of non-cellular technologies is limited to a few hundred meters at best. Therefore, devices cannot be arbitrarily deployed or moved anywhere, which is a key requirement for many IoT applications.

A major advantage of LPWAN is the long battery life. Often, we talk about 3 to 5 years. The problem is most traditional LPWAN solutions only focus on data transportation. They don’t have a broad portfolio of supporting hardware like sensors and actuators which could be used in the several usage domains. Existing solutions also suffer from security lapses such as missing key management capabilities. Node management, which supports configuration and firmware updates over-the-air, is currently not common.

Q4. From your perspective, what makes MIOTY™ the right solution?

MIOTY is a software solution, which gives customers the flexibility in system design and hardware selection like sensors and actuators. What’s more, MIOTY addresses challenging interference control and mitigation.

In the near future, LPWAN technologies will connect millions of devices transmitting data at unprecedented scales over limited and often shared radio resources. This leads to a complex resource allocation problem which is further complicated by other factors like duty cycle regulations. Many traditional LPWAN devices operating in the shared ISM bands experience unprecedented levels of both cross-technology interference and self-interference. Moreover, the device density may vary significantly across different geographical areas, creating a so-called hot-spot problem. Many LPWAN technologies also deliver incomplete messages at the back end.

On the other hand, MIOTY’s Telegram Splitting technology was designed from the beginning to circumvent these problems. It allows for secure and reliable data transmission.

MIOTY can also be implemented across systems whether equipment services or facility management. Until now, those systems have been operated separately using different proprietary technologies. By easily interfacing into those legacy systems, the MIOTY solution further helps bypass expensive forklift replacement. A MIOTY by BehrTech starter kit can be deployed as an introduction to realize possible benefits.

LPWAN in Manufacturing

Q5. Can you provide some examples for applications of MIOTY and LPWAN in manufacturing contexts?

Optimized Maintenance Model: Connected assets can call for a “request for maintenance” just when they need it. This optimizes asset performance and frees up time for service personnel.

Inventory Optimization for Parts: Optimizing parts purchasing, inventory and replacement is easier when IoT devices report what they need and when they need it.

Asset Management and Tracking: Connected assets allow for more precise inventory management, optimized logistics, quality control, and theft detection.

Condition Monitoring: All assets can be remotely monitored, to ensure performance and quality. If a problem occurs, an alarm is sent, and production can be adjusted accordingly. Monitoring the shop floor also supports a healthy working environment.

Augmented Reality: Connected assets coupled with digital representations, will provide the ability to remotely perform dangerous jobs and tasks or access hard-to-reach assets.

Product Development and R&D: Product development can now be based on real usage data, with offerings that adapt to end-user needs.

Excellence in Operation: Production becomes more flexible and responsive with unified systems of connected assets that collaborate in real-time, no matter where they are located.

Products-as-a-Service: Aftermarket services and digital add-ons for IoT devices allow manufacturers to create new business models and revenue streams.

Monetization and Brand Relationships: IoT devices create an easier path to consumer adoption and interaction. Customers can skip up-front investment and pay for services on a per-usage basis.

Improved Customer Support: Increased data from products and assets helps address the needs of customers and partners

Over-The-Air (OTA) Upgrades and Updates: Remote configuration and upgrading enables faster release of software improvements and allows a device to evolve and adapt over time.

Q6. How do you see future developments of LPWAN?

We foresee a future increase in LPWAN adoption. LPWAN overcomes the trade-offs encountered by traditional technologies in the IoT landscape, including short-range wireless networks (e.g. ZigBee, Bluetooth, Z-Wave), legacy wireless local area networks (WLANs), and cellular networks. As said before, low power consumption is a very exciting aspect, especially for remote sensor networks.

The use of free ISM Bands, in particular, instills creative license on how, what and when IoT solutions are designed. Adopters are not dependent on big telecoms or slow and inflexible network providers. They have the freedom to track, save, store and process the data. By giving customers the chance to design their own solutions, the flexibility of open, license-free LPWAN will give rise to new IoT applications and business opportunities.

Q7. What ROI do you predict your clients will see with MIOTY?

The real customer value will not come from applying new technologies like MIOTY to existing processes or structures. The value will arise when this new technology is integrated into a specific IIoT ecosystem. As with most recent trends in technology, IoT is composed of many different pieces working in concert to create business value.

IoT has the potential to offer business value that goes beyond operational cost savings. Providers in the IoT ecosystem have a large unexplored opportunity to develop compelling IoT solutions. The ability to collect and analyze disparate data, in real-time offers sustained value that will transform businesses across many verticals.

Q8. Why did CGF decide to work with BehrTech to jointly deliver MIOTY to its clients?

There are three main reasons why BehrTech and CGF are an excellent match:

First, we share common business values. A CGF’s core value – “Listen to the voice of the customer” links both companies and is implemented in our business models. We are working together to make our customers better every day.

Second, both CGF and BehrTech have flexible organizational and team structures. We are fully prepared to align our structures with customer needs. Independent teams can be formed flexibly to meet customer requirements.

Finally, people are really the key to success. And so far, the people of both companies have had a lot of fun, which is a great motivation to seek success together.

Of course, MIOTY also plays a role. CGF is sure that this new technology will establish itself in the market and is highly motivated to become a part of the success story.

For these reasons, CGF and BehrTech are a perfect match and CGF’s decision to enter into a partnership (which is currently more of a friendship) was only one result. With our comprehensive solutions approach, BehrTech and CGF are ready to transform IIoT technology into real business value.

About CGF

Founded in Germany in 1999, CGF is a global company with an office in South Carolina since 2012. Their approach to business is to establish a trusting counselor relationship by listening to their customers and jointly providing solutions. The American part – CGF-LLC – are providing services in the automotive manufacturing and office environment. They are extending their services as solution providers to tier suppliers across the upstate. CGF-LLC recently established an office on the CU-ICAR campus to work more closely with automotive education and development program providers.

Dirk Brusch – Managing Director – spearheads the establishment and development of CGF LLC – a subsidiary of CGF AG in South Carolina. He believes in the strength of partnerships and network synergies and has led the company based on the winning combination of German-American work ethic.

Tom Corbit – Business Development Manager – has worked in the IT sector for more than 30 years with 20 of those within automotive manufacturing. He has profound experience in deployments of voice and data networks, both wired and wireless, as well as data centers. He has contributed to successful establishment of business relations and business development at CGF-LLC.

Harald Rupp – Technology Lead IoT and Security – has worked with cross-industry, international security projects for more than 20 years. He focuses on strong encryption, authentication, and cryptographic integration into different IoT applications and protocols. At CGF, he is responsible for the IoT Showcase Lab in Germany, contributes to Open Source Projects, and works with industry leaders on IoT solutions across verticals

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