IoT News Roundup

Pitney Bowes expands collaboration with GE; Infosys testbed seeks root cause for part failure; new IoT starter kits from Texas Instruments; LoRa expanding into France, Russia; Sensara, Greenpeak creating smart home platform for seniors.
By Mary Catherine O'Connor
Oct 02, 2015


This summer, IOT Journal reported that Pitney Bowes, a manufacturer of mail-sorting and -handling machines, was using General Electric (GE)'s Predix software to enable Pitney Bowes' enterprise business customers to analyze metrics collected from sensors and cameras embedded in mail equipment, with the goal of improving uptime.

Last month, GE and Pitney Bowes said they're collaborating again, but this time GE is embedding Pitney Bowes' technology into its Predix platform. Specifically, GE is leveraging what it called Pitney Bowes' "location intelligence" mapping software, which gleans geospatial data from the vast stores of street addresses and GPS coordinates that Pitney Bowes maintains as part of its mail-handling system. GE will use this software to correlate sensor data collected by sensors on machines and assets with geospatial data, which it says it will use for analysis and real-time business decision-making.

A municipality may rely on maps related to sensors mounted on streetlights to help it make decisions regarding repair or maintenance activities. Or it may rely on a real-time geospatial view of sensors integrated into infrastructure to make decisions around planning or delivering city services. Pitney Bowes has also contributed its location data capabilities to IBM BlueMix, Salesforce and Facebook.

On Thursday, Oct. 1, at its fourth annual Minds + Machines event, GE awarded Pitney Bowes with an Industrial Internet Innovation ("INNIE") Award as part of an inaugural program to recognize the contributions of its partner companies toward developing the Industrial Internet.


Infosys and General Electric (GE) are partnering on a testbed for the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC), the goal of which is to develop a means of tracking data related to discrete assets during three key stages of their lifecycles: design, production and field-testing/service. The testbed, known as the Industrial Digital Thread Testbed, will launch through a pilot project at a GE Aviation plant, but Jayraj Nair, who heads Infosys's Internet of Things practice, says the project is still in its early stages. He says it will initially focus on the manufacturing and field-service phases of the lifecycle, and that he can not name the specific aviation part on which the project will initially focus.

The ultimate goal of the pilot, and more broadly the testbed, is to evaluate whether improved lifecycle tracking, enabled through sensory data collected and analyzed using software such as the Infosys Information Platform (IIP) and the GE Predix platform, can help manufacturers quickly identify the root cause of component failure, and then eliminate it through design engineering and manufacturing operations.

The IIC launches testbeds in order to accelerate the deployment of IoT technologies in the industrial sector. Infosys is leading another IIC testbed as well, also involving GE, which will develop best practices for improving asset efficiency in industrial settings.

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