Intel takes a stab at unifying the Internet of Things

Intel is doing its part to advance the Internet of Things (IoT), unveiling a new Intel IoT Platform designed to serve as an end-to-end reference model to unify and simplify connectivity and security for the IoT.  

Besides introducing integrated hardware and software products based on the new platform, it announced new relationships with an expanded ecosystem of system integrators "that promise to move IoT from infancy to mass deployment," according to a press release.

Intel is not alone in that quest. The IoT industry currently is home to many different organizations and platforms, some competing and some complementary, that want to unify and accelerate the IoT. Attempts to address the IoT space range from the relatively newly formed Thread Group, backed by Google, all the way to ZigBee 3.0, a technology that's been around more than 10 years. Intel itself is a founding member of the Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC).

Internally, Intel formed its own Internet of Things organization just over a year ago to pull together all of its capabilities across the company, said Doug Davis, vice president and general manager, Internet of Things Group, at Intel's IoT Platform launch event, which was webcast. Intel needed to unify its own technologies into a single platform to help its customers develop and deploy IoT solutions.

"The Internet of Things must scale," he said. "We're talking about billions of devices that will become connected over the balance of this decade, and we need a repeatable foundation to be able to make it easier for customers to develop and deploy these kinds of solutions."

He outlined three main domains for the IoT: things like smartphones and cars that are enabled by the mobile wireless infrastructure; the home IoT that includes PCs, game consoles and home automation and security; and the industrial IoT where things like medical imaging and factory tools are used to connect to an industrial gateway to aggregate data and connect back to a data center or cloud.

Intel said it is also delivering a roadmap of integrated hardware and software products to support the Intel IoT Platform. Spanning from edge devices out to the cloud, the roadmap includes API management and service creation software, edge-to-cloud connectivity and analytics, intelligent gateways and a line of scalable processors.

The roadmap also addresses security, with both dedicated security products and security features embedded into hardware and software products.

Intel said it is evolving and optimizing the product roadmap to work seamlessly together with building blocks from the ecosystem to address the key challenges that solution providers are facing when implementing IoT, including interoperability, security and connectivity.

As is the trend, Intel isn't trying to conquer the IoT alone, listing some big name partners in its supporting cast. Accenture, Booz Allen Hamilton, Capgemini, Dell, HCL, NTT DATA, SAP, Tata Consultancy and Wipro are collaborating to develop and deploy solutions on the Intel IoT Platform.

"The new offerings and relationships will make it easier for solution providers to move IoT from pockets of pilots to mainstream deployments with a repeatable foundation of building blocks that can be customized for limitless solutions," the company said. "Data will be unlocked faster to extract meaningful information and value for consumers and businesses."

Offered up as an example, Rudin Management, a New York City real estate company that developed its own system software called DiBoss, demonstrated that it can intelligently manage energy and other systems in its buildings. In one year, in just one building, the company saved nearly $1 million to its bottom line, which would translate to a savings of 50 cents for every square foot of real estate it owns and manages.

For more:
- see the webcast (reg. req.)
- see the press release
- see the ZDNet story
- see this Forbes article

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