Prospects for growth in industrial IoT solutions are looking up as Industrial IoT Edge 2.0 emphasizes ease of use, self-service, turnkey operation to address the complexity associated with early installations, which has been a significant growth governor to date. Potential customers across key verticals, such as manufacturing, smart cities, smart transportation, and others, increasingly recognize the business value inherent in digital transformation strategies. To date, this potential has been somewhat stymied, however, by the complexity encountered in early installations in areas such as device connectivity, edge-to-cloud integration, and edge application deployment and management.
Installation complexity remains a significant growth governor, but market emphasis on improved ease of use and self-service in the era of what ARC calls Edge 2.0 will help shorten the time to value and accelerate industrial IoT adoption. The complexity and difficulty inherent in integrating, developing, deploying, and managing edge activity is easing thanks to reduced coding and connectivity requirements, hardware and software abstraction, and hyperconvergence.
Self-service and ease of use for both solution providers and end customers are necessary to cost-effectively scale edge applications going forward. Current and potential developers and customers of industrial IoT edge software solutions should leverage the recent market emphasis on self-service and ease of use and demand more turnkey installation capability. These characteristics will reduce the amount of custom content required in a specific solution, making it easier and faster to manage and scale across the ultimate intended application space.
Zero Code Development, Hardware and Software Abstraction, Hyperconvergence
The emphasis in the latest round of industrial IoT edge software releases is on automatic device discovery, zero or no code development, hardware and software abstraction (including containers) that enables write once/deploy anywhere at scale, turnkey operation, and overall reduction in the amount of engineering required to implement, scale, and manage edge solutions. Hyperconverged solutions similarly look to reduce development, integration, and engineering requirements by making complex things easier to implement.
The emphasis on self-service, ease of use, and reduction in custom content is apparent in the latest round of new industrial IoT edge software platform releases. For example, GE Digital’s Predix Edge 2.0 looks to enable more turnkey capabilities, while self-service is a major theme for Software AG’s Cumulocity, which features 100 per-configured device connections and is pursuing customer self-certification. New entrants such as ClearBlade are similarly pursuing ease of use and self-service as a major differentiator. Marketing of pre-configured solutions, including those developed with application-specific partnerships, similarly targets these issues.
Edge providers should look to further reduce the software engineering expertise required so that your solution can be applied beyond the data scientist and IT application development communities. Enterprise cloud providers are likewise responding to the calls for improved ease of use for development, deployment, and management in their edge solutions.
Material for this blog was generated from ARC’s new global market research report on Industrial IoT Edge Software Platforms. For more information on this and other available ARC market research on the industrial IoT edge, see our dedicated IIoT edge research webpage. You can also join the conversation about this exciting topic on ARC’s blog sites or LinkedIn Groups: IIoT and IIoT Network Edge.