Directors Corner / 12.04.2017

Digitalization – what’s all the buzz?

The term digitalization is now everywhere – the news, the business, even the politicians talk about it and seem to ride the hype. What’s it all about in practice? What’s new for automation professionals – we’ve been doing this for decades! What’s new, and what is now changing?

Let’s narrow the term first to IoT i.e. “Internet of Things”, so we don’t have to start talking about e.g. digitalization of media (this is not our job here in heavy industry). Then let’s narrow it further industrial IoT a.k.a. IIoT so we can focus on connectivity of industrial machines and equipment. To be precise, even this is not yet pure IIoT, but still quite basic automation technology, M2M (Machine-to-machine).

It becomes IIoT when the industrial machines and equipment send their data to the cloud, or datacentre, “internet”, and people start creating services around the data. Analytics, calculations, data crunching, KPI’s, reports, combining data from different sources, creating forecasts etc. The nature of the data changes – previously the data was available only with specific automation tools and software. Now it gets available for all, everywhere, and with simple everyday tools like browser or phone. Then it gets more widely used and exploited, new combinations and eventually new ways of utilizing it in new kind of value creation are found. Just think of what the world was before internet, or would be without it. No Google?

So a big change is happening at heavy industry. Finally! Technology for remote monitoring of machines and equipment has been here for decades. Problem has been how to make use of it and turn it to business. At consumer markets this is already real – take for example web shops or hotel reservations. Obviously, the industry is a bit more conservative, as we often have some serious safety issues to consider also.

So what is ARNON’s business model here? Why do we yap about digitalization, and even develop our own technology for it? We have a clear focus on our selected customers. We serve these customers comprehensively. All of our customers are facing the digitalization, one way or another. We help them to participate as an active player, by helping in connecting their equipment to each other and to other systems, that enable better data flow and distribution, and making the business out of it. This might be for example remote monitoring of electrical cabinet and creating automated alarms to your cell phone or email from too high temperature. The alarm enables fixing the problem before the whole factory is down, which often means a huge sum of money saved. From that saving, most of factories are willing to pay a share to its enabler. Ka-zingg, we have identified a value chain! And there’s more to find, and many still not even invented. It gives me chills even trying to imagine what we will see in these few years around us. Brr!

ARNON enables access to digitalization to its customers. They can then begin their journey to finding their business models out of digitalization. Are you ready?

Cheers,

-Mikko-

P.S. Check out our social media channels – we’ve launched an internal digi-challenge among our employees, to spot clever and practical applications of digitalization in daily life. We are sharing the results real-time, and you are welcome to join us!

Chief Customer Officer
Mikko Mäkinen
Puh. +358 40 532 8238
mikko.makinen@arnon.fi