DUBAI, UAE, 24 February 2020: Cost has not typically been a large contributor to the lack of adoption of IoT and Big Data solutions in the context of energy management applications, said Albert Baker, Co-Founder, Danalto, an IoT solutions provider. “Low Power Wide Area Networks, for example, enable IoT deployments at a large scale in affordable ways,” he said. “They do this by ensuring a USD 100 sensor, which pings every 10 minutes and will last in the field for five years. And 500 of these sensors may all be hosted by one USD 500 gateway, which has one SIM card. This is a new proposition when we think about rolling out lots of IoT devices.” Baker pointed out that the total cost of ownership of these deployments go down as the sensors are deployed on the field, and in reality, the data services constitute the only cost that factor into the operations. As such, Baker said that over cost, complexity of deployments and lack of clarity around the value of the data being generated are the two most common reasons such technologies do not get off the ground past a proof-of-value exercise.
Baker added that typically, the clients that aim to futureproof their business and strive to have an edge in their market are the ones that showcase a willingness to invest in these technologies. “The construction sector is, by nature, light on data in terms of operations due to its dynamic nature,” he said. “However, energy monitoring across cranes and power tools can tell a company how sustainable they are, how they can save money, how their subcontractors are performing, and it can predict outages, which delay projects.” Providing another example of applications in the food business, he said that an Industrial Bakery utilised sensors in gas ovens, water mixers and electricity points to get a better understanding on when energy costs were spiking. They saved 14% by changing when they used their gas ovens, taking into consideration night tariff instead of day tariff, Baker said, adding that these are only a few examples of ways emerging technologies can improve operations and optimise energy.