Gartner Inc. recently published the 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Industrial IoT Platforms and I am pleased to share that Hitachi was recognized as a Leader* in this year’s report. Although this is the third year Gartner has conducted its annual evaluation of Industrial IoT Platform (IIoT) companies, it’s the first time Gartner has recognized any company in the Leaders Quadrant.
The advent of new digital business models, and the valuable opportunities presented by the digital transformation of industries, are accelerating the adoption of IoT and related technologies in sectors such as manufacturing, energy and utilities, transportation, and smart cities.
IIoT platforms help industrial companies build, deploy, and manage digital solutions. Regardless of industry or use case, most Industrial IoT solutions share a common set of technology requirements. They facilitate device connectivity and management, data ingestion and analytics, edge computing, integration, security, and so on. By providing a software foundation for these common requirements, IIoT platforms shorten the time-to-value for digital transformation initiatives.
As the technologies and best practices for what is often referred to as “Industry 4.0” solutions have matured, IIoT platforms have also evolved. Hitachi introduced the Lumada platform in 2016, and we have continued to evolve our architecture and portfolio in response to the lessons learned through hundreds of customer engagements since. This experience includes deployments in Hitachi’s own factories and connected product initiatives across a range of industrial segments.
I thought this would be a good time to highlight how the guiding principles that have emerged from these engagements now drive our Lumada IoT portfolio strategy.
Modular Not Monolithic It has become clear customers don’t want a monolithic IoT platform that sits apart from the existing products and technologies they own. Having to rip and replace existing investments to take advantage of IoT-specific capabilities is a non-starter. Hitachi has designed Lumada as a set of flexible software services to meet different requirements. Solution developers mix and match these capabilities with existing infrastructure and software to achieve the desired outcomes. In the real world, where new digital initiatives must fit into existing brownfield environments, this approach is pragmatic and effective.
Connected IoT solutions need to integrate and interoperate with existing equipment and systems. That includes IT systems such as ERP and other general business applications, but also existing operations technology (OT) systems such as SCADA, PLCs, automation systems, robotics, and all types of industrial equipment. Lumada is designed to operate at the intersection of IT and OT and provides rapid connectivity to a wide array of data sources, protocols, devices, and equipment.
From Edge to Cloud and Back Again There is no debate anymore about on-prem vs. cloud when it comes to IIoT deployments. The future is clearly predominantly hybrid. Most applications will leverage a distributed topology that puts data and compute where it needs to be based on location, performance, governance, cost, and other requirements. Lumada is designed to run on a continuum of connected form factors, from small devices and gateways, to servers and micro clouds, to hyperscale multicloud.
Follow the Data (Path) At its core, IoT is about getting access to vast amounts of data to model, understand and optimize machine operations and human collaboration. Data-driven insights come from being able to ingest, blend, and analyze data from a variety of sources and in a variety of formats. Being able to correlate time-series data from the factory floor with supply chain data in SAP and relational data in an MES system can yield insights that optimize an entire manufacturing operation, not just one small part. Lumada provides advanced data management and automated DataOps across the edge to cloud continuum, including automated pipelining, cataloging, governance, and analytics.
Leverage Packaged Capabilities In addition to the foundational platform capabilities that Lumada offers, Hitachi has continued to invest in higher-level modules, called Lumada Solution Cores, which provide horizontal and vertical capabilities that further accelerate time to value for new solutions. Modules for capabilities such as predictive maintenance, asset performance management, manufacturing quality, and video analytics make it faster than ever to go from concept to business value.
It Takes a Village Successful digital transformation in complex, mission-critical industrial environments requires a team approach. Bringing together the right set of partners is key. Hitachi has continued to expand its ecosystem of technology, solution-provider, and innovation partners to ensure that our customers can benefit from world-class technology and support for the most demanding solutions.
You can learn more about Lumada for IoT here.
And if you’d like to read the 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Industrial IoT Platforms report, a complimentary copy is available for download here: https://www.hitachivantara.com/ext/gartner-magic-quadrant-for-iiot-platforms-2020.html
*Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.