When most people think of pet ownership, animals like dogs and cats come to mind. But over the past 20 years or so, the reptile pet market (frogs, snakes, lizards, turtles, etc.) has exploded, and that has been both a blessing and a curse for the industry. On the positive side, the industry has seen record profits, increased awareness of proper ownership, and mass-market availability of everything from supplies to veterinary care. The negative stems primarily from demographics—the average reptile owner is 18-to-24 years old and economically unstable. Reptiles are inexpensive to buy but, like any pet, costly to maintain relative to the purchase price. This puts the creatures at grave risk when their owners fall on hard times, which happens frequently.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that more than 133 billion pounds of food from stores, restaurants, and homes is wasted annually. While some of that waste is composted, the vast majority ends up in landfills where it causes significant negative impacts on the environment. In addition, food disposal fees, as well as other factors, can adversely affect the bottom line of food-related businesses. This is where technology can play a big part. IoT-based solutions can remedy a lot of the food disposal issues plaguing the industry by offering a smart infrastructure that benefits every stakeholder, government, and business alike.
Fortune reports that American beers raked in an estimated $252.6 billion in 2014 alone, and the industry has continued growing in years since. With craft-brewing and micro-brewing taking the industry to new heights, more people than ever before are learning how to make beer. But the fermentation process is complex and difficult to control, with any number of variables influencing the taste and quality of your brew. Especially for home breweries and smaller establishments making fewer batches, loss of even a single batch due to quality control issues can set back production for weeks.
Wines and Vines reports that the U.S. wine industry made roughly $35 billion in 2015 alone and, including imports, Americans spent roughly $58 billion on wine. To keep up with this rising demand, new wineries appear every year. More than 11,496 wineries dot the American landscape from coast to coast according to the Wine Institute, with more than 4,500 of those wineries appearing in California. While American wine connoisseur’s palates have come a long way in recent decades, the technologies used to care for and grow vino has not. With farms and ranches across the nation embracing the Internet of Things, it is time wineries consider IoT applications for efficiency and quality assurance.
Given the size and remoteness of most vineyards, cellular IoT networks make the most sense for the care and cultivation of grapes on the vine.
Fun fact. The Portobello mushroom, a popular meat substitute, was originally considered an inedible byproduct crop and thrown away. Then in the 1980s, American farmers launched a marketing campaign touting the fungus as a hamburger substitute. Today, the mushroom is one of the biggest selling fungi varieties in the world, with annual sales in the billions.
Getting started in the Internet of Things (IoT) can be a daunting task for any company, but it doesn’t have to be. We all have heard about the numbers of connected devices, today and in the future. We understand that the world is moving towards the connected everything. The issue for many is how do I start? What are the challenges? What tools are necessary for IoT solutions? While it’s tempting to take a ‘wait and see’ attitude, the reality is the market is simply moving too fast to sit on the sidelines.
Here, we cover some of the issues. More in-depth analysis can be found in our recent webinar (link here) or at our Neo site (link here).
Security always should be top of mind when launching any IoT initiative, and we posted a blog in late 2016 specifically about this topic. What about practices outside of security? IoT is so new and moving at such a rapid pace that knowing the right approach is crucial to your success. One need only look at the graveyard of failed dot com companies to see the risk of jumping into a new tech sector without a solid strategy or understanding. Here are some tips to get you started thinking:
The wearables market—activity trackers, smart watches, smart glasses, and embedded sensors in clothing—is exploding, and nowhere is that more evident than in the workplace. What was once viewed as more of a novelty now is becoming an integral part of both enterprises and smaller businesses. Why the newfound interest in business wearables, primarily smart glasses? For the same reasons IoT is taking over every sector—efficiency, enhanced productivity, safety, and significant cost savings. According to analysts, smart glasses have enabled the field services industry alone to achieve more than $1 billion in annual cost savings, propelling the market to $6 billion in sales in 2016.
In the old days, especially if you were travelling by car, finding a good hotel or restaurant was a hit or miss affair. That all changed in the 1950s with the likes of Holiday Inn and McDonald’s, as travelers preferred (and continue to prefer) a known experience to taking a chance on something new. Staying overnight in a room (or even eating at a restaurant) generally is not a primary reason for travelling, so folks want something familiar and as hassle free as possible.
While the majority of beer consumed in America continues to be made by mass-market companies, Americans also have enjoyed a love affair with microbreweries for roughly the last thirty years. But fickle consumer tastes, intrusion into the craft beer market by multinational breweries, and other factors have made independent microbreweries a challenging business. Luckily, IoT is redefining the economics of small-scale brewing, bringing all new levels of efficiency and control that empower microbreweries to thrive in unstable business climates.