(Real-time decision-making and control at the edge)
The proliferation of connected machines, devices, and things is rapidly transforming the way businesses extract value from data. A growing interconnection of the physical world with computer-based platforms—known as the Internet of Things (IoT) — is producing massive data volumes that contain real-time insight, which can help organizations adopt new business models, streamline operational processes, and create more innovative products and services.
Widespread adoption of the IoT is driving a shift toward perpetual connectivity, or an organization’s ability to be continuously connected to their consumers, processes, and products. This notion of perpetual connectivity carries with it far-reaching implications and opportunities for businesses, from being able to better monitor product usage in a particular market, to proactively maintaining devices and facilities, to motivating customers to purchase a product. Those that are able to fully realize and capitalize on the value of perpetual connectivity will be positioned to ask not what can we do but what can’t we do.
A few disruptive trends are accelerating the demand for computing technologies expressly designed for the IoT. First, organizations are recognizing that there are vast quantities of data pent-up inside things, everything from vehicles to pumps, wind turbines, tractors, robotic arms, thermostats, or even human beings. Second is the realization that tremendously valuable business, engineering, and scientific insight can be derived from this data, and used to improve many business processes. Finally, in order to fully capitalize on that insight we must be able to take immediate action, making faster time to insight a critical goal of any end-to-end IoT solution.
To reap the benefits of these new data sets, organizations of every size and industry are seeking new ways to capture and analyze the data created at a growing number of IoT endpoints. Gartner estimates that 20.8 billion IoT endpoints will be in service by 20201, making it a business imperative to exploit this unique opportunity to derive value from IoT data.
This drive to extract immediate insight from data is causing high-end compute functions and data analytics to increasingly migrate closer to the edge of the network where the things are. Edge computing shifts left the processing power and knowledge generation away from the data center (Figure 1), streamlining access to relevant data, lowering the risk and cost of transporting data across the network, and ultimately accelerating time to insight and resulting actions.
Enhance decision-making at the edge
Still, many organizations continually struggle to collect data from their IoT devices and rapidly convert it into actionable intelligence. A growing number of IoT endpoints is heightening the complexity of the edge and raising concerns about data security. Data reliability is also a key challenge since data that is moved across the network is more likely to become compromised or corrupted. Even with the edge computing technologies currently on the market, organizations are still seeking ways to further simplify IT at the edge.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise is doing its part to make IoT data more accessible, actionable, secure, and reliable by introducing a new product category, Converged IoT Systems. The first system of its kind to integrate in one box—data capture, control, compute, storage, and HPE iLO data center class systems management—the HPE Edgeline EL1000 and HPE Edgeline EL4000 Converged IoT Systems quickly deliver insights at the edge and help organizations capitalize on real-time, data-driven decision-making. These Edgeline Converged IoT Systems are designed to thrive in hardened environments and optimized to conveniently capture data, deliver heavy-duty data analytics and insights, offer graphically intense data visualization, and enable rapid response at the edge.
HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems combine the five basic functions of an IoT solution, including data capture, control, systems management, storage, and compute. Traditionally, these functions procured as separate components are connected by cables and deployed independently. Hewlett Packard Enterprise has integrated key functions into a single box to deliver the entire value of a complete IoT solution. This eliminates much of the complexity of purchasing and deploying multiple disparate systems, uses less space and less energy, and increases reliability at the edge.
Higher performance, security, and reliability at lower costs
Immediacy of insight is critical for many industrial IoT environments. For example, balancing energy consumption on a power grid or using temperature data to determine if a tram’s rotating wheels are alfunctioning requires immediate computing power — even the slightest delay can put personal safety and equipment at risk. HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems eliminate the need to send this critical data across the network for analysis, reducing the amount of latency between the moment of data capture and the moment of insight.
Data that travels across the network to the data center or cloud is at an increased likelihood of corruption, making data reliability one of the chief concerns surrounding the IoT. Migrating compute power directly to the edge reduces the compute and storage requirements at the data center, and avoids cloud lock-in. This significantly reduces the issues surrounding data duplication, data corruption, compliance, and connectivity. The system’s form factor converges major functions into one chassis, reducing cabling and the probability of failure. And the simplicity of having only one box to purchase and deploy helps to streamline the procurement process and speed time to value for your new IoT investment. As a result, the HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems can be procured and maintained at a lower cost than many as-is IoT solutions.
World-class security for IoT devices
The HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems are built on open industry standards such as the Intel® Xeon® processor architecture, PCIe I/O, and PXI data capture and control. This affords the capability of running numerous x86 applications and infrastructure management software. For example, the edge can be a hostile, insecure, and vulnerable place for data. As the number of IoT endpoints continues to surge, the simple act of onboarding new things to the network can introduce new security threats and points of vulnerability. This makes securing enterprise networks for an onslaught of new IoT devices among the top concerns for organizations when choosing an IoT solution. Aruba ClearPass, our secure network access control software, is an essential security ingredient complementing the HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems hardware platform.
To help organizations safeguard themselves against the security and connectivity challenges of the IoT, networks must be able to automatically add, detect, profile, and secure new and unknown IoT devices without manual intervention. The Aruba ClearPass Policy Manager includes a device profiler to help networks distinguish between different IoT endpoints, and then control how each device accesses and uses the network based on IT-defined policies. This feature delivers world-class security while unburdening the user, using flexible security features and policy enforcement that are specific to each device. ClearPass also easily integrates with
existing network infrastructures from any vendor, enabling IT teams to easily automate and scale rather than letting security become an inhibitor for new digital transformation initiatives.
Deeper collaboration between OT and IT
The edge is increasingly viewed as the intersection where operational technology (OT) meets information technology (IT). In a typical IoT network data flow (Figure 1), data is generated, detected, and collected on the OT side before being passed to the IT organization for analysis, either at the edge or in the data center.
As previously discussed, traditional IoT solutions require each stage of this journey to occur independently and in separate boxes, with many times the data traveling over cables, and then sent to the data center or cloud. However, HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems are seamlessly blending these two different worlds for the first time, making data collected from OT devices a valuable source of decision-making insight for IT processes.
Just as good communication between the plumber and the carpenter is required to build a house, IoT projects have a greater chance of success when the OT and IT organizations collaborate. The HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems compels these two organizations to work more efficiently together, resulting in better outcomes and increased benefits for the business. OT and IT committing to work together has the potential to transform operations, improve data security and reliability, and increase system interoperability. Organizations can advance their IoT initiatives through a deeper collaboration between OT and IT, and the new HPE Edgeline Converged IoT Systems can be a material factor in promoting this collaboration.
*Source: HPE Business White Paper