The Industrial Internet of Things has specialized needs, including the ability to create, process, store, analyze and discard 95 percent of data at edge locations such as wind farms and offshore oil fields.
Wikibon defined these in “The Vital Role of Edge Computing for IoT: 2016 Update.” In his latest analysis, Wikibon Chief Technology Officer David Floyer examines the offerings of leading hybrid cloud and IIoT providers and finds that no one vendor today is completely adequate, and some prominent cloud players are far behind. (One important caveat: This analysis applies specifically to hybrid cloud for IIoT, not to hybrid clouds in general.)
Floyer specifically looks at Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, General Electric Co., Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co., IBM Corp., Microsoft Corp. and VMware Inc. He finds that while some are strong in other areas of cloud and analytics, they have little to offer that’s specific to IIoT.
Of the public cloud providers, Microsoft Azure is the strongest in hybrid IIoT cloud, including security and analytics, but lacks hardware for edge computing, Floyer writes. HPE provides strong hardware and private cloud features for edge computing, but doesn’t own a public cloud platform, instead partnering with Microsoft. GE is the only vendor that comes at IIoT from the operations side, and its Predix platform supports the sensors and other systems that generate data, but it lacks both IT hardware and a public cloud.
The result is that customers must navigate a web of multiple vendor partnerships to create a full IIoT infrastructure that can support a company’s needs for monitoring and automated management of an edge industrial operation such as a wind farm.