When it comes to the IoT (Internet of Things), adoption within the industrial sector is something that is much easier said than done. This was the basis of the annual IIoT (Industrial IoT) Maturity Study done by Bsquare, www.bsquare.com, which surveyed more than 300 companies in the manufacturing, transportation, and oil and gas industry.

To get a better gauge of where companies within these industries are when it came to effective implementation of IoT solutions, as well as to serve as a guide for other organizations, researchers put together the IIoT Maturity Index. The index outlines a natural progression of stages for companies to achieve maximum value in Industrial IoT.

The first step focuses on device connectivity. Companies are using on-board logic to collect data and transmit it to cloud databases. Next, is monitoring of realtime data through dashboard and visualization tools. Eventually, automation of business activities and device configuration gives way to edge computing, which means the distribution of analytics and orchestration at the device level.

Researchers also find 86% of industrial organizations are leveraging Industrial IoT solutions with 84% acknowledging its effectiveness and impact it will have on the space for years to come. Much of this is driven by the desire for increased device and logistics. In addition, enterprises hope this leads to lowered operating costs and increased production volumes. As a result, two-thirds of respondents express plans for IIoT deployments in the next few years.

Yet, despite this optimism of what benefits this will bring, companies admit to the complex challenges of deployment, leaving adoption levels spread all across the board. The report indicates large percentages of initial investments geared toward connectivity and data visualization, while only a smaller fraction of respondents are doing work with data analytics and using those insights for automated applications.

Research suggests that many companies are stalled in the first couple stages of IIoT adoption that are laid out by the Maturity Index. In order for them to truly progress and see a true ROI (return on investment), they must push through to the later stages of analytics, orchestration, and edge computing.

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