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IoT & Big Data Analytics for Sustainability

IoT and Big data analytics is an emerging domain that is poised to become the backbone of modern local and global communication with its reach in different verticals. At the same time it also has a huge potential to become a key driver for sustainability- cutting across all verticals.

IoT and Big data analytics as tools for resource efficiency

In recent years, the IoT and Big data sector has really picked up due to both supply side drivers such as decreasing cost of sensors and bandwidth as well as demand side drivers including increasing resource costs, increasing product variety in a number of industries.

“Big data and IoT solutions for sustainability are an emerging area of innovation and can easily result in cost as well as resource savings with nominal investments. However it is crucial for the Indian industry to understand the need for asset upgradation through data analytics,” says Satish Kashyap, Director of Algo Engines.

The areas where use of IoT and Big Data analytics is common are; optimizing shop-floor operations, Improving Customer Service, optimizing utilities performance, facilities optimization and driving consumer response to reduce resources. Durjoy Patrabanish, SVP & Business Leader – Analytics, Blue Ocean Market Intelligence said, “Data can be an asset for sustainability innovation in the industry however it needs to be better understood in the Indian context. There are significant opportunities for resource savings in manufacturing processes, efficient waste management and for improving process efficiency through use of big data and analytics in the Indian industry.”

Some may find it challenging to implement IoT and big data in crude sectors like heavy manufacturing and mining but it is not impossible. According to Mr. Sekhar Sanyal, Director and Country Head- India, IET, “IoT and big data can be leveraged to create sustainability impact in the Indian industry. Though initial digitization efforts are challenging, but result in positive savings for businesses by creating networks, enabling data penetration and generating value from data. 

Emerging Solution Providers creating Sustainable Impact

Several new businesses are emerging in India recognizing the potential of the internet of Things (IoT) in the sustainability space. Most of them either work in the domain of Smart Buildings or Machine to Machine Communication.

The Sustainability Impact Map is a schematic that represents the impact of enterprises in India working in this space. Materiality (Vertical axis) depicts the potential sustainability market for these companies, that is, their resource saving potential. Momentum (Horizontal axis) represents the number of years that have passed since the inception of the enterprise. The size of the bubble represents the revenue of these companies.

There are several emerging solution providers in the field of IoT and Big Data which are set to tap into this market opportunity. Some of the key names in area are; Entrib Technologies Pvt. Ltd, UrjaGreen Technologies Pvt. Ltd, Machine Pulse, Algo Engines, SmartrHomes, Entrib Technologies Pvt. Ltd., Surmount Energy Solution Pvt. Ltd, Zenatix Solutions, Algo Engines, Ronds Solar, Netsoft Group Associates Information Technologies etc.

Apart from these there are existing big players like, CISCO, Software AG, Tech Mahindra, Wipro Technologies which are pioneering action in the area of IoT and big data.

Outlook for 2020

According to CISCO, IoT market was valued at $2.3 trillion globally in 2014. But companies could only manage to tap 47% of that market.  In India alone the IoT opportunity is estimated to be about US$394 billion in private sector and US$116 billion in public sector in the next 10 years.[1]

India is already a powerhouse in the sector of digital innovation due to the pre-existent IT infrastructure.

Based on the current scenario of emerging solution providers and the drivers it looks like shop floor analytics tools track and trace systems, consumer driven smart applications, smart cities and utility performance improvement will emerge as the key areas where we will see most action in next few years. The study from Sustainability Outlook estimates that India will contribute to about 5-6% of global IoT market or US$ 15-20 billion by year 2020.

The sectors that are likely to take off in the next few years are; Home automation, Smart building, M2M Comm, smart logistics, smart utilities management.

On the other hand these new technologies will open doors for new possibilities for resource sustainability not only on supply side (manufacturing, utilites etc) but also on the demand side (water and energy efficiency through home automation).

Author: SustainabilityOutlook