Some important considerations when designing and implementing an IIoT system for remote monitoring and control are the ongoing recurring costs associated with the data generated, transmitted, and stored by the various deployed devices. Some of the primary sources of recurring costs include: cellular service, data hosting, and data analytics.
Cellular Data (and other Connections to the Network)
Depending on the selection of technology, the amount of data collected and transmitted, and the rate of reporting the collected data to the network, the estimated or calculated data can vary significantly from the actual data that is ultimately assessed and charged. For example, edge devices may generate 10’s or 100’s of Bytes of data and consider additional overhead for protocols or other layers of devices that then forward the data on to the network (assume 10’s or 100’s of additional Bytes for each layer or level of hierarchy). In subtotal, 100’s or 1000’s of Bytes are likely transmitted each time to the network. Add to the device and protocol generated data any additional data (private or public) the network assesses for every session/transaction made by and between the network. These session “costs” can be in the 1000’s of Bytes per session and can vary depending on the service provider, service coverage/quality, and the design of the devices.
Although the price of accessing, storing and retrieving (or even pass through forwarding) of data has come down in price drastically, there is still a real cost for data storage whether it goes through AWS, another third party, or to a corporate data storage facility. These costs are based on real costs of equipment, facilities, electricity, maintenance, support, and staffing. Depending on the requirements set by the consumers of the data (and downstream analytics) and the amount of data generated and transmitted to the data storage facility/resources, the total amount of data accumulated, stored, and ultimately charged for could be quite significant.
Although “analytics” is the newer entrant to the IIoT value chain, it has real costs as well. Consider that analytics requires the retrieval, computation (multiple computations, multiple iterations of computations, and multiple layers of computations), storage, and ultimately transmission of the result to all the destinations subscribing to the results. This compounding effect of the amount of data generated by each edge device, the amount and duration of storage of the data, and the ultimate computation of the data analysed across those devices from the data store – analytics can consume a disproportionately large number of computing resources to satisfy a users’ analytic requests.
The Cellio Wireless Network has been designed to be as quick, affordable, and high quality. Cellio Wireless Transceivers allow the Cellio system and customers to quickly and easily expand existing systems with as many sensors and controllers as they like (with minimal incremental expense). The data collected in the back-end data system can be easily and rapidly mapped and provided for view on PC’s, tablets, smartphones, etc. both via browser views as well as automatically generated native mobile app views. Sharing and modifying the dashboard views is quick and easy. All of this is available and easy to put in place today. We know that getting IIoT/M2M/IoT solutions successfully designed/implemented/running from scratch can be tough if you try to do it alone – that is why we have assembled all the pieces you need with Cellio.
When estimating the actual costs associated with data from your IIoT devices, make sure to consider not only the amount and frequency of data generated and transmitted from each edge device, but also all the other layers of costs associated with transmitting it to network storage (consider the frequency of data transmitted) and the duration of storage. Finally, take into account the amount and complexity of the analytics expected to be done on some or all of the data collected and stored from all of the devices. Evaluating IIoT systems with the “end in mind” will highly influence your final selection(s).