Thursday September 20, 2018
Home India Internet of T...

Internet of Things (IoT) to empower millions in rural areas

0
//
268
image source: www.4virtus.com

By Nishant Arora

New Delhi, March 24: Some call it the fourth industrial revolution or “industry 4.0”; for others, the time when machines can “talk” at “smart” factories and “connected” homes to make your life better is here. But for India, Internet of Things (IoT) can bring a real revolution: empowering millions in rural areas and connecting “humans” to the mainstream.

A well-connected nation is the first step towards a well-served nation and, hence, connecting rural India to the IoT will provide the much-needed bridge between urban and rural India.

“It is a surefire way of channelling the benefits of a digital economy to the largest part of the country. IoT will enable delivery of education, health, governance and financial services to otherwise underserved areas,” Oracle India managing director Shailender Kumar stressed.

For example, most patients in rural areas do not have access to specialists. Thus, several large hospitals in the metros are beginning to offer remote consulting services in rural villages using media-rich network capabilities.

“The doctors can see and interact with patients in remote telemedicine centres, with the case history and medical data automatically transmitted to the doctor for analysis. Similarly, the IoT technology can be leveraged to offer high-quality remote education in high schools across the country,” Shailendra Kumar told reporters.

The IoT connectivity also offers a host of development opportunities to untapped areas, including manufacturing and e-commerce to market local and traditional products.

“A host of ‘localisation’ technologies can help different regions to communicate; so language is not a barrier. Relevant information and updates can be provided in local languages and scripts,” the Oracle executive added.

According to K.S. Viswanathan, vice president (industrial initiative) at apex IT body Nasscom (National Association of Software and Services Companies), as IoT emerges as the next big thing to become a $300 billion global industry by 2020, India is all set to capture at least 20 percent market share in the next five years.

“The IoT is dramatically alerting manufacturing, energy, transportation, medical and other industrial sectors worldwide,” said Viswanathan while launching the “Nasscom IoT Centre of Excellence” in Coimbatore last week.

Andhra Pradesh has taken a lead when it comes to leveraging the IoT (Internet of Things) potential in the country. The state government has approved the first-of-its-kind IoT policy with an aim to turn the state into an IoT hub by 2020 and tap 10 percent market share in the country.

“We will develop state-of-the-art Internet of Things infrastructure that matches global standards to grab an Indian market share of $1.5 billion by 2020,” said state IT minister Palle Raghunatha Reddy as the Centre is currently drafting an ambitious policy to create an Indian IoT industry worth $15 billion by 2020.

On the global consumer front, Gartner has forecast that 6.4 billion connected things will be in use worldwide in 2016, up 30 percent from 2015, and will reach 20.8 billion by 2020.

As you traverse through these mind-boggling IoT numbers, where does India stand?

“We see that India will have a significant growth in IoT connections in the next four-five years,” said Mats Lundquist, chief executive officer at Telenor Connexion, Sweden-based leading enabler of connected business solutions.

Industry numbers indicate that manufacturing will be one of the main IoT drivers in the Asia Pacific (APAC) market and will be the biggest sector in IoT spending.

According to a report from global market research firm Frost & Sullivan, manufacturing contributed 30 percent of the IoT spending in 2014 and it is expected to rise up to 32 percent of total spending in the APAC region by 2020 which equates nearly $79 billion.

“Being an emerging market, India has a big potential owing to several initiatives like “Digital India” and “Smart Cities”. The next big market (for connected devices) in the world is south Asia and India holds a good position,” Apalak Ghosh, principal consultant at market research and consulting firm CyberMedia Research (CMR), told reporters.

“Eventually, south Asia will contribute to about 30-40 percent of the total connected things,” Ghosh added.

So where will the real revenue come from – the consumer or the enterprise sector?

“The Digital India initiative has created a strategic roadmap to build and strengthen domain competency and place India on the global IoT map. We believe that the enterprise sector will bolster IoT revenues,” elaborated Deep Agarwal, regional sales director (India) of US-based Zebra Technologies that builds tracking technology and solutions.

“To begin with, the revenue will first come from the enterprise sector. As the technology booms, the revenue will start coming from the consumer sector,” Ghosh added.

Since IoT is a concept of devices talking to one another, there is a lot of data transfer happening which is vulnerable to cyber threats as well.

“The cloud can work as a catalyst to make IoT work and for that, there has to be a right kind of framework that can assist it. The GRC (governance, risk management and compliance) guidelines  can play an important part to make IoT work in a proper manner,” Ghosh said.

India is currently a small IoT market but with great potential. “We will definitely see a great development in the country on the IoT front in the coming years,” Lundquist pointed out.

For Oracle’s Shailendra Kumar, rural India is set to transform itself by taking the technology leap and adopting real-life solutions like IoT. (IANS)

 

Next Story

IoT And Predictive Analysis’ Impact On Indian Transport Industry

The future of transportation in India, if it continues along the technologically-enlightened path that it has embarked upon, could be smoother and less chaotic in the near future.

0
The 33 Red Buses of Glacier National Park, nicknamed “The Rubies of the Rockies,” on average, transport 60,000 tourist each summer.
The 33 Red Buses of Glacier National Park, nicknamed “The Rubies of the Rockies,” on average, transport 60,000 tourist each summer.

A report in the Wall Street Journal predicts that India’s combined workforce will increase by 12 million each month, making it the youngest working population in the world by 2022.

Sixty-five per cent of India’s population already falls in the working-age bracket, which means that a considerably large group of commuters from across the country travel long distances using personal vehicles and public transport. In doing so, they often battle with ill-maintained roads and insurmountably heavy traffic. A more specific viewpoint, focusing on commuters using company-sponsored cab services, reveals that these professionals spend hours traveling to and from work, with ill-planned routes and delayed pick-ups hampering their health and workplace productivity.

Therefore, several path-breaking companies are leveraging the potential of modern-day technologies to bridge the existing gaps in India’s transport sector.

Transport
Indian Railways is one of the most important and controversial transport in India. Wikimedia Commons

This is where the role of Internet of Things (IoT) and predictive analytics in ride-sharing comes in. The objective of every ride-sharing start-up is to find a solution to optimize travel. They use IoT and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to identify demand and supply patterns for transportation within the city, based on historical data. The final objective of commute-focused start-ups is to understand how the traffic from commercial hubs interacts with the rest of the city and identify a way to alleviate the hassle of ride-sharing within that context.

The Indian transportation industry can leverage predictive analysis and data mining to draw insights and patterns from the vast pool of big data pertaining to transport and traffic conditions in particular areas. Using these patterns, systems powered by AI can plot the fastest routes for commuters, factoring in multiple pick-ups and drops on the way. Such systems rely upon AI to create routes for corporate commutes and club the employees who plan to commute at similar times, thus ensuring that they take the shortest route possible.

Predictive analysis tools can also alert drivers and passengers about impending bottlenecks and congestion. Such systems will reduce travel time for employees, while helping corporates save the large sums of money they spend on organising company-sponsored commutes.

Transport
The objective of every ride-sharing start-up is to find a solution to optimize travel. They use IoT and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to identify demand and supply patterns for transportation within the city.

Technological intervention can also bring about safety and security as far as public transport and employee commute services are concerned.

Corporates with 24-hour rotational shifts are obliged to provide cab services to their employees to ensure their safety. Connected services such as transport automation systems, driven by AI and IoT, can ensure that employees travel safely by collecting and storing relevant data about drivers, including their background verification information and prior criminal records. Additionally, through robust mobile applications, passengers can provide feedback pertaining to their experience with their drivers at the end of each trip. Advanced systems that use mobile phone sensors can also identify instances of rash driving.

Beyond the workforce commute, predictive analysis can be applied to a holistic urban mobility scenario. It can improve public transport by forecasting weather conditions, determining arrival times of buses, and predicting the number of drivers travelling each day.

Transport
Hand pulled ricksaw and tram in Kolkata. wikimedia

Further, advanced analytics will be able to provide data regarding the impact of road maintenance, signal failures, accidents, and vehicle breakdowns on the overall traffic conditions, in addition to circumnavigating mobility bottlenecks by mapping the shortest routes in real-time. This will help people in reaching their destinations as quickly as possible.

Also Read: Indian Catholic Nuns Call Out For Justice in Kerala

The future of transportation in India, if it continues along the technologically-enlightened path that it has embarked upon, could be smoother and less chaotic in the near future. On the back of rapid technological advancement, the transport sector has the potential to transform itself into a well-oiled machine. Commuters and travelers are advised to just sit back, fasten their seat belts, and enjoy the ride. (IANS)