AT&T, Cisco (News - Alert), GE, IBM, and Intel formed the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC), an organization that aims to accelerate the Internet of Things and improve the integration of the physical and digital world. It will identify requirements, define common architectures, and help organizations connect and optimize assets and operations.
In a conference call, Mike Troiano from AT&T (News - Alert), Tony Shakib from Cisco, Bill Ruh from GE, Ron Ambrosio from IBM, Ton Steenman from Intel and Dr. Richard Soley from the Object Management Group and now director of the IIC, talked about the different areas the IIC will cover, the mission and how it will overcome some major challenges in the industry today.
Troiano explained AT&T’s role in the IIC, and how the carrier goes beyond connectivity in the Industrial Internet. AT&T allows manufacturers to integrate a single SIM into their machines, and teaches them how to take that wireless data and put it into infrastructure. In addition, AT&T provides application development, professional services, deployment services, cloud storage and analytics to help power companies and applications in the IoT and Industrial Internet.
“The Industrial Internet builds upon AT&T’s vision of enabling people to operate anything remotely, anytime and virtually anywhere,” said Troiano in a statement. “The IIC is an assembly of the world’s leading technology innovators working to mobilize devices and machines around the world, whether they’re in an office building or on a ship in the middle of the ocean. Together, we share a common goal of building a more connected world.”
This isn’t the first time AT&T and GE have collaborated on the Industrial Internet. In October, they signed a global alliance agreement for GE machines to access AT&T’s network and cloud operations. AT&T and GE also enables other development operations, including building several products around AT&T technologies like the single Global Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) system, as well as cloud access for industrial products.
The other representatives explained how massive big data will actually become as the Internet of Things continues to grow, and how that will impact operations of different industries. Once people start to combine that operational information with business data, companies will be able to start optimizing across both business and operations domains.
This big data, and the scale of it, is what presents some challenges that the IIC sets out to solve. Shakib refers to the scale of the infrastructure to support the Internet of Things, the way companies have to secure it and the amount of data it generates. He argues that the Industrial Internet is going to be 10, 100 or even 1,000 times larger than some of the biggest network infrastructures in place today.
You can’t really talk about the Internet of Things today without discussing security and privacy. The meetings have not even started yet, but the IIC will focus on data privacy and security, taking into account different regional privacy laws and looking at what standards already exist and how they can be applied to the Industrial Internet.
The IIC aims to make the Industrial Internet a more seamless, interoperable part of industries like mining, oil and gas, healthcare, utilities, transportation and more.
More companies will be joining the IIC over the upcoming weeks. Learn more at www.iiconsortium.org
Edited by Cassandra Tucker