Software-giant Microsoft has finally given enterprises the power of setting up their own IoT deployments without having to depend on an in-house expertise for deploying a cloud-based IoT solution from the ground.
The company recently unveiled IoT Central, a new Internet of Things (IoT) service that will allow enterprises to differentiate their services from its competitors. It has been seen, that even though IoT is such a big differentiator, an enterprise needs to shell out big bucks for the same as it requires a broad set of skill sets to implement these IoT solutions. This isn’t necessarily possible for a lot of enterprises. Enter IoT Central.
The Microsoft IoT Central service will significantly help enterprises in simplifying the deployment of their IoT solutions.
In addition to IoT Central, Bill Gates’ Microsoft has also decided to bring its Azure Stream Analytics to edge devices, which will make provisioning new IoT devices much easier than it is currently. Further, the giant has also decided to work on a completely new analytics service for time series data. It looks like the software giant is looking to provide a number of new offerings that are complementary to its existing Azure IoT Suite.
Customers using IoT Central will not be requiring any cloud solutions expertise as the service is fully managed by Microsoft. The service provides a fully featured solution that abstracts all of the underlying infrastructures away and allows businesses to focus their attention on analyzing their data.
Though IoT Central makes lives easier for enterprises by offering them pre-configured solutions for many typical use cases, however, users lose the flexibility of choosing their own analytics engine or storage service.
Microsoft’s Azure Time Series Insights is a new database based on the same technology that the giant is currently making using to log every single event on Azure (that is billions of events a day). Since majority of IoT data tends to arrive in a time-based fashion, Time Series Insights is purpose-built to store as well as interactively analyse and visualise such type of data to search for anomalies. The service offers an API for developers, which helps them in easily integrating Azure Time Series Insights into their existing workflows.
Microsoft’s decision of bringing its Azure Stream Analytics to edge devices will allow these devices to run real-time analytics locally without having to waste their time in sending all their data to Azure first. While a cloud solution is expected to analyse data from millions of devices, however a single device actually doesn’t produce that much of data, and even a very basic Raspberry Pi is capable of running this service locally. But, thanks to Microsoft, these devices will be able to function effectively even they don’t have a reliable internet connection.
The tech giant is confident that as IoT grows on becoming a mature technology, it will lead to more and more of the intelligence getting pushed out to the edge. Microsoft’s stream analytics is the giant’s first step in this area.
Though Microsoft is aware of its competition in AWS and Google, but the tech giant is super confident that they are currently the only cloud vendor in Internet of Things that focuses on both solutions and deep on-premises support with the likes of Azure Stack.