IBM Launches Internet of Things Foundation
Market research firm IDC estimates that by 2020 there will be as many as 28 billion autonomous IoT devices installed. Today IDC estimates there are 9 billion such devices. Meanwhile, IBM also announced plans to form a partner program for IoT, along with a set of certified instructions, or "recipes," for connecting devices, sensors and gateways from a variety of its partners. The partners are expected to include ARM, B&B Electronics, Elecsys, Intel, Multi-Tech Systems and Texas Instruments, IBM said. "Combining trusted, open-standard based data from connected devices with other data sources can lead to the creation of exciting new services," said Krisztian Flautner, general manager of the IoT business at ARM. "The IBM IoT Foundation can unleash the potential of a connected world, and by utilizing the ARM mbed software ecosystem, there is a real chance that IoT solutions can positively influence the way smart cities, businesses and homes develop." "The Internet of things is a huge opportunity for developers to connect their devices to the cloud to collect and share data, making factories, automobiles, homes, buildings and personal electronics more intelligent," Avner Goren, general manager of strategic marketing for Embedded Processing at Texas Instruments, said in a statement. "IBM's IoT Foundation complements our broad portfolio of hardware and software system solutions for IoT nodes and gateways."For example, developers can easily combine data from sensors with predictive analytics to forecast failures in critical equipment before they occur and automatically dispatch a repair technician, which can reduce downtime and improve productivity. "Big data requires big access, and enterprises with large capital investments in industrial systems need a proven solution that can deliver valuable information from their legacy devices deployed in the field to the Internet of things," Karl B. Gemperli, CEO of Elecsys, said in a statement. "The IBM IoT Foundation, when combined with our rugged IoT gateways, extends the edge of IT networks to interface directly with existing industrial equipment and provides a fast track to easily capture and integrate vital process data from large populations of devices in the field, all without the need for substantial investments in new field equipment," Gemperli added. The IoT Foundation is offered as a cloud service within IBM Bluemix. The software service will enable developers to quickly on-board devices using standard APIs and protocols. The IBM Internet of Things Foundation will be available on Oct. 21, IBM said. The IBM Internet of Things Business Partner program will be available on IBM PartnerWorld.
As a core part of IBM Bluemix, the IoT Foundation is designed to provide simple, secure application access to IoT devices and data. Developers can rapidly compose analytics applications, visualization dashboards and mobile apps that can generate valuable insights when linked with back-office enterprise applications.