As Patrick Gray said: “The Internet of Things (IoT) appears to be moving from futurist speculation to reality.” Here’s a look at what business value it may hold at Energy Efficiency industry: the 5 main reasons why Energy Efficiency business developers should look at IoT revolution.
- Every things can talk.“The “thing” […] is any item that can contain an embedded, connected computing device.” For energy consuming devices, a “thing” in the IoT could be a self-powered no-battery no-wire connected meter or a light bulb that sends luminosity data to a server somewhere on the Internet.
- Collect data for free (or nearly). IoT is not actually that new. We may rename BMS, EMS and other automation systems as IoT systems. “The primary difference between now and then is the nearly ubiquitous presence of mobile data networks, combined with low-cost and highly capable devices.” The barrier regarding gathering data at a low cost for energy management, demand response and other Energy Efficiency projects is no longer an issue. However, there are still hurdles to manage, such as retrieving not only data but relevant data or managing a huge amount of data (“big data”) and extracting value from them.
- Always make the right decision. “The excitement around IoT for most businesses is around the data that the IoT can generate.” We can imagine very up-and-coming use of the data generated by an IoT for energy management purpose, such as highly detailed, location-specific energy consuming behaviours’ qualification. The related created value seems to be infinite, such as “smelling” the immediate environment (presence, temperature, CO2 concentration…) with cheap sensors and reacting accordingly for better energy use (differentiated regulation, optimised O&M…).
- Liberate innovation. “While this is nothing new, the fact that what amounts to a state-of-the-art telematics device is now in most people’s pocket in the guise of a smartphone makes several business models attainable to much smaller entities.” Cheap, connected hardware provides almost free access to numerous entrepreneurs, developers and startups willing to make their dreams of reduce energy savings a shared reality. So far, only Utilities and electronic equipments manufacturers have the power to do it.
- Help reduce energy consumption through nice customer’s experience. “The companies that will meet with the most success with IoT need to offer more than just a “big brother”-style advertising experience.” Perhaps your house may “switch on”, increase temperature, connect your internet box and warn the hoover while you, and your smartphone, get closer or your car might schedule your next oil change based on your location and driving habits.
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