Channel Partners

SPR 2016

For 25 years, Channel Partners has been a resource for indirect sales channels, such as agents, VARs and dealers, that provide network-based communications and computing services, associated CPE and applications, and managed and professional services

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COVER STORY IOT GETS DOWN TO BUSINESS While consumer devices make up the bulk of IoT media coverage, by 2019, BI Research says government/infrastructure and enterprise use will dwarf the Fitbit crowd. ESTIMATED NUMBER OF INSTALLED IOT DEVICES BY SECTOR 25 20 15 10 5 0 BILLIONS OF DEVICES TOTAL DEVICE GROWTH YOY 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% 2014E 2015E 2016E 2017E 2018E 2019E ENTERPRISE GOVERNMENT/ INFRASTRUCTURE HOME wear along with other train vitals. The result is that trains go substantially slower than they otherwise might — it's all about margin of safety. This is a big enough deal that freight companies know they'll be money ahead if they spend to put sensors on each and every wheel to measure vibration and heat, two leading indicators of failure. So a typical 100-car freight train amounts to 800 wheel sensors happily collecting data. Now, probably the worst way to compile and analyze the data from these 800 sensors would be to hook each one up to a cellular network and send raw data back to HQ. First, there's a lot of data being generated, so cellular connections would be wildly expensive, and second, trains frequently go where cell networks are sparse, so there'd be an unnecessary reliability issue. You want analysis done right there at the train, with just one or two uplinks to send crunched data to the company. So in Verizon's view, the wheel management system needs one or two connections per train, whereas the sensor maker sees the job as selling a cool 800 units. Thus, wildly disparate esti- mates of just how many connected things there will be by the end of the decade. Cars will go the same way — lots and lots of sensors, with just a couple of uplinks to send data back to the manufacturer overlords. The train example is a good one because it also illustrates how different IoT is from cloud. It's pretty easy to put a dollar value on fewer inspections, better wear analysis and faster train speeds. The price of sensors and 4G links are predictable. You can readily figure out what the project costs and what it saves or makes without having to resort to the squishy science of "productivity improvements," as is often the case with straight cloud computing projects. This is going to sound better to your customers than the song and dance about moving capex to opex. But that's a big-business example. Certainly Union Pacific didn't call an agent to see about getting some train wheel sensors. So let's talk plumbers. Why do their kids go to better colleges than your kids? Because most times when you call a plumber, it's an emer- gency. There's brown, nasty, smelly ooze backing up into your basement, and that's about the least optimal time to go into haggling mode. You want it fixed ASAP, so shopping around for best price isn't even on your mind. For the last 30 years, septic systems only alerted when you had a problem. They've been failure-prone, and when they fail, they fail off — the one time you'd prefer a false posi- tive, you don't get one. The same is true for city folks with catch basins; when it's full, you' re in trouble. Would most homeowners pay $500 for sensor installation and $10 per month for smart monitoring? They will once their existing system has failed. Take it a step further and track water flow in and out of your house, and suddenly plumbers can Source: BI Intelligence SHIPPING UP TO PROFIT: AT&T says its IoT-based Asset Management for Trailers offering can protect the estimated $1.73 trillion in freight shipments that traverse North America every year. Customers can monitor the location and condition of trailers and the goods inside with self-contained tracker sensors and 3G connectivity. 20 CHANNEL PARTNERS DIGITAL ISSUE SPRING 2016

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