Device connectivity is not a revolutionary concept in process automation. Bi-directional communication between the process control system and field devices has been the norm for decades. Controllers have their own IP addresses and web servers provide access to manage software updates and data acquisition. So why the elevated interest in connected devices now?
ARC Advisory Group believes that it's because the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) will increase the number of connected devices in manufacturing by orders of magnitude. As industrial organizations gain full appreciation for the potential value of connected devices and figure out how to use them effectively, asset and operations optimization are emerging as the primary IIoT opportunities (at least for the immediate future).
At ARC's nineteenth annual Industry Forum in Orlando, Florida, the high interest level in connected devices necessitated two sessions (Parts 1 and 2) under the common theme: "Connected Asset Performance Management - Where Industrial Internet of Things Gets Real." The two sessions helped illustrate the two sides of the connected device coin, with the speakers in the Part 1 session discussing real value achieved from device connectivity, while the speakers in Part 2 reminded attendees that continuous connectivity remains a challenge and that data can lull plants into a false sense of security.
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Keywords: Asset Performance Management (APM), Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS), Connectivity, Enterprise Asset Management (EAM), Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), ARC Advisory Group.