Industrial IoT seeing broad adoption, but still in early stages

November 08, 2017 //By Rich Pell
Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions provider Bsquare (Bellevue, WA) has released its first annual IIoT Maturity Study, which looks at the current IoT adoption progress in the manufacturing, transportation, and oil and gas industries.

Reaching more than 300 respondents at companies with annual revenues in excess of $250 million, the study reveals that while 86% of industrial organizations have adopted IoT, most of their IIoT investments are focused on device connectivity, data forwarding, and real-time monitoring. Fewer than half of the organizations are using advanced analytics, and only a quarter have taken steps to automate the application of insights derived from analytics.

Bsquare's IoT Maturity Index outlines the progressive stages commonly associated with Industrial IoT technology adoption. The stages include:

  1. Device Connectivity – on-board logic to collect data and transmit to cloud databases,
  2. Data Monitoring – dashboard and visualization tools to monitor real-time data,
  3. Data Analytics – machine learning and complex analytics used to develop device models and insight,
  4. Automation – development and execution of logic rules that automate business activities and device configuration, and
  5. Edge Computing – distribution of analytics and orchestration to the device level.

"Our study shows that while industrial organizations have enthusiastically adopted IIoT, a majority have not yet moved to more advanced analytics-driven orchestration of data insights," says Kevin Walsh, vice president of marketing at Bsquare. "These later stages of IIoT maturity - analytics, orchestration, and true edge computing - tend to be where most of the ROI is realized. This is especially important because, according to our study, the number one reason cited for IIoT adoption is cost reduction."

According to the study, 84% of the surveyed organizations believe that IIoT solutions are very or extremely effective. In addition, 95% believe that IoT has a significant or tremendous impact on their industry.

The construction/transportation segment led the adoption of IoT solutions at 93%, followed by oil and gas (89%) and manufacturing (77%). Nearly two-thirds of all businesses plan to increase their IoT investments over the next 12 months, the study says.

Over 90% of IIoT adopters cited device health as the primary reason for adopting IoT solutions, followed