Location Intelligence | Pitney Bowes

Develop an IoT strategy to optimize business, improve decision making

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a world of objects — from fitness trackers to roadways, from refrigerators to industrial machinery — embedded with sensors transmitting information over the internet, allowing them to communicate with each other and with us.

Soon, billions of these devices will generate an unimaginably vast amount of data. Advanced analytics software can mine this data for true business insight. According to Harnessing the Internet of Things, a Forbes Insights white paper sponsored by Pitney Bowes®, businesses that develop and adopt an IoT strategy now will be better poised to use this insight to improve operations and decision making.

What type of information can organizations glean from the IoT? According to the white paper, IoT users can learn:

The unique identity of objects. Consider the barcode as a first step in this ID. Today, the barcode on a can of soda can tell you who manufactured the it. The barcode typically cannot tell you which plant bottled it, in what supermarket it's being sold, or the demographics of that store's consumers. Unique identifiers enabled thought the IoT can provide this type of information.

What's happening to an object. Sensors can record temperature, humidity, speed, pressure, usage and other variables that are otherwise difficult to track remotely. This capability gives users insight into how their far-flung assets are faring, and what attention they may need.

Once properly analyzed, information on an object's unique identity and its status can help organizations optimize operations, make better business decisions and even disrupt industries.

The IoT's ability to help optimize operations is particularly important in the industrial arena. Here, the IoT allows dynamic scheduling to improve capacity planning, job size, operator availability, fleet size and location. This capability can increase productivity and revenue. For example, the IoT can alert a manufacturer when a machine needs to be serviced, helping that company avoid costly breakdown repairs and accompanying downtime.

Analyzing data from the IoT also enables improved decision making. Data helps organizations get to know their customers better. With this knowledge, organizations can begin to differentiate both their marketing strategies and their offerings to increase sales.

Some organizations will even use the IoT to disrupt industries. New technologies traditionally help break down barriers into previously stable markets. Business disruptors typically enjoy an immediate competitive advantage because they won't have any legacy systems or processes to overcome. Consider an auto insurance company that uses the IoT for real time risk management. It can immediately analyze information on traffic conditions, weather conditions and crime rates, helping consumers buy micro policies based on very specific needs. This insurer could disrupt industry models by writing policies for acts as specific as driving into London or parking overnight in New York.


The value of location intelligence

Location intelligence is significant to any IoT strategy. Every object in the physical world is located somewhere, and information on that location is important if businesses are to contextualize objects connected to the IoT. Having sensors and analytics alert you to a problem with a piece of equipment is useless if you can't tell where that equipment is located.

Pitney Bowes offers an array of location intelligence software and services to help organizations visualize objects in context.

  • Spectrum® Spatial Analyst is a scalable platform allowing users to create and manage maps, spatial data and location-based services.
  • MapInfo® MapXtreme® is a GIS software development kit for Microsoft.net®. It provides support for embedding mapping and GIS capabilities into business applications. With it, developers can build custom mapping and spatial applications.
  • SendSuite® Shipping is a web-based solution using a single platform to manage all transportation-related activities, improving efficiency and compliance while reducing costs.
  • Clarity™ solutions industrial internet applications use sensor data to predict and resolve equipment and operator issues.
  • World Points of Interest datasets provide information on the location of diverse pools of business, leisure, geographic, utility and shopping points worldwide. It provides users with information that can help them make decisions on issues such as risk and access to services. It also enables “find my nearest” searches.

Learn more

To learn more about how to develop an IoT strategy, download this Forbes Insights white paper, sponsored by Pitney Bowes:

Harnessing the Internet of Things: How to derive big business benefits from the connected world