Cisco Highlights Internet of Everything Potential in 2014
The Internet of Everything (IoE) is actively taking a role in solving some of the industry’s biggest infrastructure and economic challenges according to a new Cisco report.
Bringing together a panel of industry experts and IoE “watchers”, Cisco presented a combination of visionary thinking and practical applications at the launch of its new report at the CiscoCREATE Internet of Everything innovation centre in Greenwich, UK.
The report, titled “The Internet of Everything: Bringing the Future to Life”, examines the current realisation of the IoE and how this vision will play a key role in fuelling an economic upturn for years to come.
As uptake gathers pace, the IoE will radically transform and shape lives by connecting the unconnected, creating unprecedented value for organisations, individuals, communities, and countries.
From retailers to utility companies, manufacturing firms to healthcare, the IoE represents a huge opportunity for organisations, educators and people across the country. In an era when it's possible for everything to be given an Internet address and connected to the network, 50 billion “things” will be connected globally by 2020, creating $19 trillion worth of value at stake.
Speaking today at the event, Phil Smith, Chief Executive of Cisco UK & Ireland (UKI), said: “The Internet of Everything provides the platform from which an ever-increasing number of connections will ‘wake-up’ the world around us.
“With just one percent of the physical world connected at this time, this is just the beginning of an amazing future. As connections become smarter, faster and more insightful, we will only see more imaginative and ambitious applications of the IoE which will quite literally change the world.
“That is exciting for Cisco because there is no required roadmap, no single path ‑ just a platform that offers abundant opportunity and endless possibilities for everyone.”
From better, more sophisticated ways of selling to and engaging with customers, to increasingly efficient and slick supply chains and manufacturing processes, the Internet of Everything is being brought to life in a number of ways. In the report, Cisco identifies five areas that will see the biggest benefits first: healthcare, retail, transport, energy and especially manufacturing.
Consumers’ relationships with purchases are being transformed as sensors and monitoring devices are built into not only the production process but also products themselves.
“Cradle-to-grave” strategies tracking product lifecycles from the raw materials in the field through to refurbishment and renewal present manufacturers with major opportunities in the face of spiralling costs and dwindling resources.
There is a growing necessity for manufacturers to put the same efficiency into the manufacturing process as they do the sales, and seek to make disposable items the renewables of the future.
“Organisations, in both the public and private sectors, need to take a closer look at their current business models if they want to take advantage of the opportunities generated by the IoE,” said Ian Foddering, Chief Technology Officer, Cisco UKI.
“Three factors are key to tapping into these opportunities effectively. Firstly, an ambition and willingness to be open-minded and realise how the IoE applies to the business context. Second, to hire and invest in the right skills to manage connections, and thirdly to explore what new partnerships will allow new ground to be broken for everyone involved to benefit.”
Siemens: Providing the First Industrial 5G Router
Across a number of industry sectors, there’s a growing need for both local wireless connectivity and remote access to machines and plants. In both of these cases, communication is, more often than not, over a long distance. Public wireless data networks can be used to enable this connectivity, both nationally and internationally, which makes the new 5G network mainframe an absolutely vital element of remote access and remote servicing solutions as we move into the interconnected age.
Siemens Enables 5G IIoT
The eagerly awaited Scalance MUM856-1, Siemens’ very first industrial 5G router, is officially available to organisations. The device has the ability to connect all local industrial applications to the public 5G, 4G (LTE), and 3G (UMTS) mobile wireless networks ─ allowing companies to embrace the long-awaited Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).
The router can be used to remotely monitor and service plants, machines, as well as control elements and other industrial devices via a public 5G network ─ flexibly and with high data rates. Something that has been in incredibly high demand after being teased by the leading network providers for years.
Scalance MUM856-1 at a Glance
- Scalance MUM856-1 connects local industrial applications to public 5G, 4G, and 3G mobile wireless networks
- The router supports future-oriented applications such as remote access via public 5G networks or the connection of mobile devices such as automated guided vehicles in industry
- A robust version in IP65 housing for use outside the control cabinet
- Prototypes of Siemens 5G infrastructure for private networks already in use at several sites
“To ensure the powerful connection of Ethernet-based subnetworks and automation devices, the Scalance MUM856-1 supports Release 15 of the 5G standard. The device offers high bandwidths of up to 1000 Mbps for the downlink and up to 500 Mbps for the uplink – providing high data rates for data-intensive applications such as the remote implementation of firmware updates. Thanks to IPv6 support, the devices can also be implemented in modern communication networks.
Various security functions are included to monitor data traffic and protect against unauthorised access: for example, an integrated firewall and authentication of communication devices and encryption of data transmission via VPN. If there is no available 5G network, the device switches automatically to 4G or 3G networks. The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and autoconfiguration of the devices,” Siemens said.
Preparing for a 5G-oriented Future
Siemens has announced that the new router can also be integrated into private 5G networks. This means that the Scalance MUM856-1 is, essentially, future-proofed when it comes to 5G adaptability; it supports future-oriented applications, including ‘mobile robots in manufacturing, autonomous vehicles in logistics or augmented reality applications for service technicians.’
And, for use on sites where conditions are a little harsher, Siemens has given the router robust IP65 housing ─ it’s “dust tight”, waterproof, and immersion-proofed.
The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. “With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and auto-configuration of the devices,” Siemens added.