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Sensor Analytics for Business Impact – 5 Great Examples

By 2025, the total global worth of IoT technology could be as much as $6.2 trillion–most of that value coming from devices in health care ($2.5 trillion) and manufacturing ($2.3 trillion).

The “Internet of Things” has ceased to be just a buzzword now. It is growing at a tremendous rate. Millions and billions of devices are talking to each other using the wireless technology. It is predicted that by 2020, the amount of Internet-connected things will reach 50 billion! Sensors are fuelling the growth of IoT in a phenomenal way. Sensors, in various sizes, shapes, and formats, are gathering real-time information and helping businesses, smart cities, and people take smarter decisions in real-time.

Forward-looking organizations have already started leveraging the power of sensors and sensor analytics to improve performance, quality, and applicability. They are gathering the voluminous data generated by the sensors, processing it, and gaining actionable insights for their business.

Let us have a look at some mind-blowing examples of Sensor Analytics in action in the world around us.


UPS, one of the largest shipping companies in the US, uses sensor analytics to improve efficiency and save money. Using sensors, every day, the company captures more than 200 data points for each vehicle, for its more than 80,000 vehicles. The information transmitted by the sensors on speed, mileage, number of stops, and engine health is analyzed to reduce the idle time, optimize the fuel consumption, and reduce the harmful emissions from the vehicles. It also uses On-Road Integrated Optimization and Navigation tool to optimize the delivery routes for better efficiency.

NIPSCO (Northern Indiana Public Service Co.)

The distribution networks of NIPSCO includes thousands of miles of electrical lines and natural gas pipelines. The pipelines have been installed over many years, with some of those installed in the early 1990s. To keep a close eye on these lines, NIPSCO uses sensors. The sensors report real-time data about pressure, flow, and other crucial metrics. In case of any abnormal pressure, flow or temperature conditions, the operators just shut down parts of the distribution network and reroute the gas flows. It, thus, helps in taking real-time actions quickly. The company also plans to use the accumulated data to further improve the pipeline operations.

Alex and Ani Jewelry Stores

The Alex and Ani Jewelry store chain uses Bluetooth sensors that track the traffic in the stores. Based on the analysis of the traffic, it sends out customized offers to users’ phones when they are inside the store.

Along with this, through its partnership with beacon technology company Swirl, the jewelry store wants to track the movements of its customers within the store and based on that, better organize and display the products to drive sales. 

Public Bus Transportation of City of Dublin

The City of Dublin uses fixed and mobile sensors to improve its Public Bus Transportation Network. The road and traffic department streams and analyzes real-time data, such as bus timetables, traffic detectors, CCTV cameras and GPS updates. This data is transmitted by over 1000 buses every 20 seconds. The gathered data is analyzed in real-time and a visualization of a digital map of the city overlaid with the real-time positions of the buses is prepared. The traffic controllers use this visualization to identify the cause of the traffic delays and clear the congestions more swiftly.

John Deer

John Deer, one of the leaders in the area of equipment manufacturer, released several products in the year 2012. These products connect John Deere’s equipment with each other as well as to owners, operators, dealers, and agricultural consultants. With this interconnectivity, farmers can increase efficiency and enhance productivity. Using the sensors added to the equipment, John Deer to helps farmers in better managing their fleet, save on fuel and also decrease the downtime of their tractors.

The John Deere Field Connect system monitors the moisture levels and shares the information with the farmers. The environmental sensors also measure air and soil temperature, humidity, solar radiation, wind speed, rainfall and leaf wetness. Using this data, the farmers can take timely irrigation decisions.

Clearly, amidst the hype around Internet of Things, there are plenty of uses cases where sensor analytics is fundamentally transforming businesses. Organizations have beginning to make sizable investments in it and have already started reaping tremendous benefits from it. It is no wonder that 94% of the businesses have already seen a return on their IoT investments!

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