Category Archives : Internet of Things

09

Aug

Getting started with IoT: driving business action through analytics and automation

Whether you’re looking for in-the-moment insights or long-term trends, the value of information is only as good as its usefulness for your business. Some information must be acted upon immediately, but it can also be stored for long-term, big-picture analysis of trends over time. For each case there are different tools to use, and Azure IoT has you covered.

Near real-time data analysis

Azure Stream Analytics is a pay-as-you-go service that ingests data from a variety of sources. In addition to real-time data from IoT Hub, it can also take in historical data from Azure Blob Storage, and combine Event Hub data with other sources to highlight correlations or run comparative analyses.

Using Azure Portal, you can initiate an Azure Stream Analytics job, direct it to the appropriate data set, and provide instructions on how to look for specific data, patterns, or relationships.

Once Stream Analytics has completed a job, you can direct the results to Blob Storage, SQL Server, a Data Lake, or a database-as-a-service offering, such as Cosmos DB. You can also send the data to HD Insights or Power BI for additional analysis and visualization.

As its name suggests, Azure Time Series Insights is designed to store,

09

Aug

Getting started with IoT: driving business action through analytics and automation

Whether you’re looking for in-the-moment insights or long-term trends, the value of information is only as good as its usefulness for your business. Some information must be acted upon immediately, but it can also be stored for long-term, big-picture analysis of trends over time. For each case there are different tools to use, and Azure IoT has you covered.

Near real-time data analysis

Azure Stream Analytics is a pay-as-you-go service that ingests data from a variety of sources. In addition to real-time data from IoT Hub, it can also take in historical data from Azure Blob Storage, and combine Event Hub data with other sources to highlight correlations or run comparative analyses.

Using Azure Portal, you can initiate an Azure Stream Analytics job, direct it to the appropriate data set, and provide instructions on how to look for specific data, patterns, or relationships.

Once Stream Analytics has completed a job, you can direct the results to Blob Storage, SQL Server, a Data Lake, or a database-as-a-service offering, such as Cosmos DB. You can also send the data to HD Insights or Power BI for additional analysis and visualization.

As its name suggests, Azure Time Series Insights is designed to store,

02

Aug

Getting started with IoT: what do you do with all that data?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is all about generating data, helping organizations discover new insights about their operations from that data, and identifying opportunities to become more productive and innovative. In the first post in this series, we introduced Getting started with IoT: how to connect, secure, and manage your “things”. But once your IoT devices are deployed, secured, and provisioned through Azure IoT Hub, the question remains: where do you send all of the data?

Information such as the telemetry data generated by your devices and sensors is time-sensitive. Other information isn’t. The role of Azure IoT Hub is to determine how each data packet needs to be prioritized and where to send it. These messages fall into four general categories:

IoT Hub message routing: Includes alerts and time sensitive telemetry data File uploads: Media files and large batches of telemetry data that are uploaded by intermittently connected devices, or compressed to conserve bandwidth Device Twin reported properties: Device state information such as capabilities and conditions, or the status of workflows like firmware or configuration updates IoT Hub integration with Event Grid: An alternative to message routing, Event Grid integrates IoT Hub Events into Azure and non-Azure services. These

30

Jul

Announcing public preview of Azure IoT Hub manual failover feature

Today, we are announcing the public preview offering for Manual failover. This feature is part of IoT Hub cloud service and allows customers to failover an IoT hub instance from its primary Azure region to its corresponding geo-paired region.

Failures are possible in any software system especially when it’s a distributed system and it is important to plan for failures. The IoT Hub service implements redundancies at various layers of its implementation to safeguard its customers against transient failures and failures scoped within a datacenter. The service offers a high level of SLA using these redundancies. However, region wide failures or extended outages, although remote are still possible.

The IoT Hub service provides cross regional automatic disaster recovery as a default mitigation for such failures. The recovery time objective for this recovery process is 2 – 26 hours. IoT solutions which cannot afford to be down for so long, can now use the IoT Hub manual failover feature to failover their IoT hubs from one region to another in a self-serve manner. The recovery time objective for IoT Hub manual failover is 10 min – 2 hours.

More details about this feature can be found in the article that outlines

26

Jul

Feeding IoT device telemetry data to Kafka-based applications

With the newly released support for Kafka streams in Event Hubs, it is now possible for Azure IoT Hub customers to easily feed their IoT device telemetry data into Kafka-based applications for further downstream processing or analysis. This gives customers with existing Kafka-based applications the added flexibility of faster adoption of Azure IoT Hub, without the need to rewrite any parts of their applications upfront. This means that customers can start using IoT Hub’s native support for messaging, device and configuration management early, and defer the decision to migrate their telemetry processing applications to natively use Event Hubs at a later time.

Applicable customer scenarios

The ability to feed IoT device telemetry data into Kafka-based processing applications is valuable in several scenarios:

A primary scenario involves a prospective Azure IoT Hub customer with legacy data processing applications that are already written to interface with Kafka clusters. With the support for Kafka in Event Hubs, the customer can defer the need to make upfront changes to such applications as part of onboarding to Azure IoT Hub. The new feature enables a faster IoT Hub adoption cycle for the customer with lower upfront development costs. A secondary scenario involves a customer who

26

Jul

Feeding IoT Device Telemetry Data to Kafka-based Applications

With the newly released support for Kafka streams in Event Hubs, it is now possible for Azure IoT Hub customers to easily feed their IoT device telemetry data into Kafka-based applications for further downstream processing or analysis. This gives customers with existing Kafka-based applications the added flexibility of faster adoption of Azure IoT Hub, without the need to rewrite any parts of their applications upfront. This means that customers can start using IoT Hub’s native support for messaging, device and configuration management early, and defer the decision to migrate their telemetry processing applications to natively use Event Hubs at a later time.

Applicable Customer Scenarios

The ability to feed IoT device telemetry data into Kafka-based processing applications is valuable in several scenarios:

A primary scenario involves a prospective Azure IoT Hub customer with legacy data processing applications that are already written to interface with Kafka clusters. With the support for Kafka in Event Hubs, the customer can defer the need to make upfront changes to such applications as part of onboarding to Azure IoT Hub. The new feature enables a faster IoT Hub adoption cycle for the customer with lower upfront development costs. A secondary scenario involves a customer who

23

Jul

IoT: the catalyst for better risk management in insurance

Thought leader Matteo Carbone has titled his book All the Insurance Players Will Be Insurtech. He means that insurance companies that embrace digital transformation and technologies will lead the industry. Those technologies include the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Big Data. Carbone believes that the use of new technologies gives insurers “superpowers” to assess risk more accurately, manage risk continually, and mitigate risk in real-time.

The process of getting superpowers is the process of converting IoT data into actionable insights, and using those insights to reduce risk through prevention and mitigation of claim events. As the powers grow, so do the benefits to insurance customers and providers. Insurers can also increase the pace of  customer interaction. It is the growth in the number of interactions produces more data points, and the same data is used to prevent or mitigate risk, while driving the sale of additional services outside the traditional insurance value chain. Remote monitoring and emergency alert services also provide peace-of-mind to the customer. These are only the start of additional services. Insurance companies are now selling a matrix of other services layered on top of the base policy. The income of

23

Jul

IoT: the catalyst for better risk management in insurance

Thought leader Matteo Carbone has titled his book All the Insurance Players Will Be Insurtech. He means that insurance companies that embrace digital transformation and technologies will lead the industry. Those technologies include the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Big Data. Carbone believes that the use of new technologies gives insurers “superpowers” to assess risk more accurately, manage risk continually, and mitigate risk in real-time.

The process of getting superpowers is the process of converting IoT data into actionable insights, and using those insights to reduce risk through prevention and mitigation of claim events. As the powers grow, so do the benefits to insurance customers and providers. Insurers can also increase the pace of  customer interaction. It is the growth in the number of interactions produces more data points, and the same data is used to prevent or mitigate risk, while driving the sale of additional services outside the traditional insurance value chain. Remote monitoring and emergency alert services also provide peace-of-mind to the customer. These are only the start of additional services. Insurance companies are now selling a matrix of other services layered on top of the base policy. The income of

18

Jul

Getting started with IoT: how to connect, secure, and manage your “things”

The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the go-to solutions for executives looking for more and better insights about their business. Collectively, IoT is made up of a network of devices and sensors, otherwise known as things, which connect to a company’s network and the cloud by various means. These devices generate data about the organization and its operations, and stream it to data stores and apps where it can be analyzed and acted upon. The resulting insights enable organizations to take action in response to something that has already happened, or which is expected to.

But the value of the data an IoT solution generates depends largely on how effectively you deploy and manage the devices. In addition to their breadth of form factors (from an incredibly small footprint to the size of a manufacturing assembly line), devices also have numerous capabilities and can be controlled at a minute scale. Once installed, they’re designed to perform their jobs without having to be physically touched again. Some operating characteristics may include:

Automatic operation Limited power Limited connectivity Difficult to access Only accessible through the backend Susceptible to being tampered with by the public Managed by special protocols

To help

18

Jul

Getting started with IoT: how to connect, secure, and manage your “things”

The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the go-to solutions for executives looking for more and better insights about their business. Collectively, IoT is made up of a network of devices and sensors, otherwise known as things, which connect to a company’s network and the cloud by various means. These devices generate data about the organization and its operations, and stream it to data stores and apps where it can be analyzed and acted upon. The resulting insights enable organizations to take action in response to something that has already happened, or which is expected to.

But the value of the data an IoT solution generates depends largely on how effectively you deploy and manage the devices. In addition to their breadth of form factors (from an incredibly small footprint to the size of a manufacturing assembly line), devices also have numerous capabilities and can be controlled at a minute scale. Once installed, they’re designed to perform their jobs without having to be physically touched again. Some operating characteristics may include:

Automatic operation Limited power Limited connectivity Difficult to access Only accessible through the backend Susceptible to being tampered with by the public Managed by special protocols

To help