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Platform adds value to IoT data before reaching cloud

Posted: 20 Jun 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Davra Networks  IoT  cloud  sensor  fog computing 

The proliferation of IoT has pushed a lot of companies in a frenzy to connect sensors and provide all sorts of monitoring services, and carriers will happily bill them for the data that transit through their networks.

But sending all the raw data to the cloud for processing and intelligence is inefficient and expensive according to Paul Glynn, CEO of Irish startup Davra Networks. With the release of its RuBAN application enablement platform, the 3-year old Irish company jumps on the "fog computing" bandwagon with a clear goal to add local value to IoT data before it even reaches the cloud.

"Out of the estimated 50 billion connected devices that may be deployed by 2020, the vast majority will not have a direct connection to the cloud but will pass on their data through local gateways or routers," said Glynn.

"Often, most of the generated data is irrelevant, a sensor may indicate it's still operational, or that the values it monitor remain unchanged, and often that data could be dumped," he noted.

While a lot of network and mobile operators see the IoT as an opportunity to sell more SIM cards and data plans, Glynn presents the cloud-based RuBAN platform as a way to build new data services while focusing on data reduction.

In Davra's solution, data is gathered, filtered and managed near its source, and only relevant information is sent to the cloud to be turned into insightful business intelligence, calling for action. Following Cisco's fog computing concept, simple sets of rules running on the gateways' embedded computers can enable local intelligence.

"That way, networks evolve beyond object connectivity, to data services," said Glynn. "Last year, Cisco would have supplied a router, but now they offer routers bundled with data services," he added.

"For example, our solution is already implemented in a large fleet of school buses operating in rural areas, in Texas. A gateway onboard each bus provides WiFi for the passengers, but it also aggregates engine data for driver behaviour monitoring, it logs speed and traffic density, the actual position of the bus, and all these information enable us to build new data services that largely pay for the WiFi installation alone."

RuBAN's user interface

RuBAN's user interface

"As computing power moves to the edges of the network, data analysis has a bigger role to play at the edge," continues Glynn. "With the RuBAN platform, it is as if we were dropping a virtual network engineer at gateway level to act upon the data flow and decide remotely and on-the-fly what makes sense to be routed further and what should be dumped to reduce the stream of data."

The RuBAN platform can presents the data on any connected interface, it requires no customisation and also handles automated network troubleshooting, response and problem repair remotely. It can be used to connect many different industries horizontally, while the granularity of each data analysis solution is based on the customer's specific requirements, established locally.

In the future, this sort of data intelligence could even become an integral part of software defined networks.

- Julien Happich
  EE Times Europe

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