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4 min. read
Noortje Vollenberg
Last update: 23-06-2021

8 Industrial IoT trends that will shake up manufacturing in 2020

IoT trends will explode in 2020 and years to come. Now is the time to get started using a ready-to-go solution.

Gartner expects about 20 billion connected IoT devices in 2020. No doubt, the connected world of the Internet of Things is evolving rapidly, and everybody is looking for the next big trend that their company can’t miss out on. Below you’ll find a list of the biggest Industrial IoT trends for 2020, after which I’ll explain how you can start implementing right away.

Tip: take a look at the IIoT trends for 2021.

Popular Industrial IoT trends for Manufacturing Popular Industrial IoT trends for Manufacturing

Industrial IoT trends in manufacturing for 2020 and beyond

Besides trending topics like digital twin, 5G, virtual & augmented reality and blockchain, there are several highly anticipated trends for manufacturing in 2020:

  1. Increased IoT implementation
  2. Software-as-a-Service becomes the norm
  3. Edge computing will overtake cloud computing
  4. IoT and router security will be a bigger priority and cybersecurity budgets are raised
  5. Predictive maintenance applications boosted up by IoT
  6. Big Data and AI: the amount of IoT data that needs to be processed and analysed will grow exponentially
  7. More customisation of the machine experience
  8. The cyber security professional crisis will get worse

Sources: Forrester, Analytics insight, Finances online, Towards data science

That’s a lot of changes expected to come. Below you’ll find practical information to set up your digital strategy and a guide with 10 tips to-quick-start your Industrial IoT project.

Fast-forward your digital roadmap using a SaaS platform

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a method of software delivery that allows data to be accessed from any device with an Internet connection and web browser. In this web-based model, software vendors host and maintain the servers, databases and code that constitute and secure an application.

That SaaS is to become the norm is thus very understandable. Working with a SaaS solution offers benefits such as:

  1. Lower costs and less responsibility
  2. Reduced time to benefit
  3. Scalability and integration with 3rd party services
  4. Continuous new upgrades and releases
  5. Easy to use and perform proof of concept

A SaaS solution is accessible from anywhere, on any device. It gives you fast and reliable access to all of your industrial devices. The only thing you need to do is securely connect your equipment to your chosen SaaS platform.

Benefits of a SaaS Platform Benefits of a SaaS Platform

Empower your SaaS platform with edge technology

As previously stated, edge computing is expected to overtake cloud computing in popularity. Edge technology prepares and transfers the machine’s data easily and securely to the SaaS platform. When the edge device is fully integrated with the SaaS platform, it ensures a smooth operation from start to finish and helps quick-start your IoT implementation by connecting any industrial equipment to your SaaS platform in no-time.

Once your industrial devices are accessible in your SaaS platform, you can start collecting its data. A gateway that’s empowered with edge technology can even minimise the amount of data transferred to the cloud. The generated data can then give you key insights into your devices and their performance.

Not sure what data to collect from your machines?

Don't set the bar too high and start with collecting obvious data samples like:

  • Production counter
  • Machine state changes
  • A sensor malfunction or error
  • Status of an emergency button
  • Average time of stagnation
  • Current oven temperature
  • Energy usage in %

These data points can be defined in a PLC variable and stored in the SaaS platform by way of your edge device. But collecting and storing the data is only one part of the job. Next you’ll have to make the data actionable and create insights you can use to make machines or processes better.

IoT equipment + Edge + Cloud = Data IoT equipment + Edge + Cloud = Data

Use machine data for predictive maintenance, machine learning and AI

Process optimisation, machine learning and Artificial Intelligence require machine data. Use your machine’s historical data to discover trends, recognise patterns, predict when maintenance is needed or view it live to monitor the machine state and prevent production stagnation.

Predictive maintenance applications will rise as a result of IoT integration, and data is the main ingredient to make this happen. So make sure you collect any and all data from your machine, as soon as it starts operating. Start with setting up a proof of concept by analysing your data to find common occurrences leading up to times when maintenance was needed.

Having learned from your historical data, you can then get started with testing various alerts to predict when maintenance is needed.

A machine needs a customisable experience

Each machine and its application is different. More customisation of the machine leads to a better experience. A SaaS platform which enables customisation and includes a mobile app adds value to the end-user of the machine.

Wow your customer with a machine platform that makes the operation and monitoring of their machine even easier. Or provide a customisable smartphone app with real-time production insights, remote control over the touch panel and easy ways to share information between the customer’s operating team and your service department.

IoT security IoT security

Conquer the fear of IoT security

What do you know about security and IoT?

The volume of cybersecurity data involving cybercrimes worldwide will continue to grow exponentially. As the number of cyber security risks rise everyday, you must take security seriously when you start implementing IoT.

But the lack of qualified cybersecurity experts and continuously evolving cybersecurity landscape makes securing your own Industrial IoT platform, data and connected devices more and more difficult. This may cause fear in your company, or from your customers, which can bring the implementation of IoT to a stop.

The best way to tackle this issue, is to cooperate with an IoT partner who’s fully focused on securing the solution from top to bottom. They should have in-depth knowledge about cyber risks, a dedicated team of experts who monitor the SaaS platform 24/7, prevent cyber attacks and protect yours and your customers’ data.

Tip: Find out how IXON ensures a safe and trustworthy IIoT solution: Download security whitepaper.

How to quick-start your IIoT project?

This white paper consists of 20 pages of concrete steps for your IIoT project and real-life examples on how to succesfully implement IIoT as a machine manufacturer.

White paper: The Road to IIoT Maturity in Machine Manufacturing