IoT makes inroads into water sector | GE enters IoT race

Industrial Internet of Things iot
The Industrial Internet of Things industry is expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.56% over the next 4 years. New products and divisions focussed on IoT applications are likely to continue to see growth

In Australia, utilities now have access to the data they need to deliver reliable and cost effective services, according to an announcement by Sensus on the launch of its FlexNet solution in the Australian market. 

The technology will pave the way for Australian utilities to play a major role in the Internet of Things, in addition to improving operations and conservation efforts, said the energy and water management company.

Working with communications infrastructure company BAI, the technology is said to “improve operations, manage maintenance issues before they escalate, and meet changing market and customer expectations,” according to a company statement.

Says Jamie Longman, director of business development, at Sensus – Smart Water Networks: “FlexNet is a proven communications platform built for today’s digital utility.

“In addition to improving operational efficiency and conservation efforts, the technology will pave the way for Australian utilities to play a major role in the Internet of Things.”

The carrier-grade network uses a dedicated, secure spectrum that is ideal for digital utilities, and supports multiple applications through its network architecture including meter reading, pressure and temperature control and streetlight management.

“The combined BAI and Sensus solution is designed specifically to realise the vision of Australian utilities to build a customer-focused utility for the future,” said Malcolm Keys, director of critical communications, at BAI. “We will look to leverage both parties core skills and strong track record in delivering reliable wireless networks.”

It has been reported by NICTA (National ICT Australia) that over $1.4 billion is spent per year on reactive repairs and maintenance by Australian water utilities. By moving to a more preventative repair schedule, there is the potential to save $700 million per year.

GE enters IoT race

In other IoT news, GE is said to be fighting for dominance of the IoT market. In an announcement yesterday, GE announced the creation of GE Digital – a day after IBM announced a similar new division.

The new GE division is “a transformative move that brings together all of the digital capabilities from across the company into one organization.

GE Digital will integrate GE’s Software Center, the expertise of GE’s global IT and commercial software teams, and the industrial security strength of Wurldtech,” according to a GE release.

The new division will be led by Bill Ruh, chief digital officer.

Ruh has been leading GE’s Software COE and building the foundation of strong software experience for GE since 2011. Since taking on this position, he has increased the number of software experts at the Software Centre in San Ramon,CA to 1,200 people.