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Evolution of IOT Of India

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Sujith Vasudevan,  Managing Editor

Times have changed. If it took at least a decade for global tech to hit Indian soil, now India is at the forefront of technological innovations and early interventions. However, we have to cover a lot of ground quickly. The government shares this vision, especially with its Smart City roadmap. They intend to spend a significant amount of money on smart city projects to make the 100 cities more sustainable. The government plans to establish Integrated command centers in all 100 smart cities by August. According to Deloitte, India presently has 60 million IoT devices, with the number expected to reach over two billion in the next three to four years.

"From retail to healthcare and energy to manufacturing, the upcoming year will bring more advanced IoT solutions, improving sustainability, productivity, and safety of operations"

Until now, the benefits of IoT in commercial applications have been numerous. IT and business stakeholders collaborate to align IoT initiatives with business goals to meet revenue and customer experience targets. Security concerns, including connectivity in industrial automation, remain deterring as certain parts of India lack access to the internet. Prosenjit Sengupta, CDO, Thermax Limited, with two decades of experience in the automotive industry and who has been awarded as the Top 50 CIO of India for two consecutive years, takes a deep dive with CIO Insider into the spectrum of IoT. In conversation with Prosenjit by CIO Insider Team.

Could you tell us about sectors that are currently leveraging IoT the most?
The established sectors such as Automobile, Line Manufacturing, Agriculture, Hospitality, Retail, Logistics and Transportation, Finance and banking, Oil & Gas are widely leveraging IoT. Whereas Healthcare, Home automation & real estate, and of course, education, among others, are the latest to deploy this technology, with utility and smart cities to join the bandwagon in the near future.

Could you state a few factors widely driving investments for enterprise IoT products and services?
IoT is often considered the key driver for business growth for reasons starting with efficiency, which moves businesses from reactive to proactive. Since timely and accurate information enables actionable insights to drive change by cutting costs and improving efficiency. Secondly, deeper insights across many related data allow enterprises to sort elements into perspectives enabling access to data both in real-time and over time to arrive at precise predictions and better decision making. It provides transparency with transportation, in particular, room for new business ideas for gizmos and startups and energy efficiency and sustainability.

Which areas do you suggest market participants
should emphasize to devise and align their

market strategies as per the IoT market dynamics this year?
For retail, as it tends to get smarter post-pandemic, emphasis should be placed on price, staff, stocks, and supplies. Operations, site safety, stocks for industrial IoT. ERP, PLM, MES, CRM with site and customer operations & efficiencies for IT & OT merger. Machine learning can be deployed as a logical step in improving training, evaluation, and prediction. Platform plays across IoT bazaars into many assets and service players, urbanization of IoT, and IoT security.

Which areas do you suggest market participants should emphasize to devise and align their market strategies as per the IoT market dynamics this year?
For retail, as it tends to get smarter post-pandemic, emphasis should be placed on price, staff, stocks, and supplies. Operations, site safety, stocks for industrial IoT. ERP, PLM, MES, CRM with site and customer operations & efficiencies for IT & OT merger. Machine learning can be deployed as a logical step in improving training, evaluation, and prediction. Platform plays across IoT bazaars into many assets and service players, urbanization of IoT, and IoT security.

Multiple GoI initiatives such as Digital India, Make in India, IoT COE by Nasscom, MeitY, and others will help digital focus. The Utility metering in gas, water, and electricity in India will be digital


There will be a focus on energy efficiency and hybrid management. Additionally, companies are aching to reduce their dependencies on areas impacted by the pandemic, such as people, travel, onsite expectations, etc. Moreover, some new areas emerge around electricity distributions, remote patient monitoring, and insurance applications, including a high focus on security and learning.

Could you elaborate on the challenges holding back enterprises from large scale IoT deployments?
The most common misconception is that IoT is an IT or technology play rather than a business transformation one when designing and solving problems with the business and the client in mind. Establishing connectivity mainly across legacy and proprietary assets is complex, as it requires different connectivity protocols considering the areas of fixing up IoT sensors. In turn, the network in India is still the biggest issue in having a seamless data flow across many parts.

As more assets and sensors come in, there is a need to widen the data storage, making analysis and interpretation challenging. Hence, it is vital to have a solution for handling a combination of organized and Big Data. As for data processing, the right algorithms, right fault tree analysis, and testing hypothesis require cloud-friendly distributed analysis solutions. Connecting the dots between customer expectations and service delivery creates business value, which otherwise could make the IoT journey more academic.

How do you perceive the future role of the IoT ecosystem in India?
5G will play an essential role in connecting assets, particularly in expanding sensors, devices, and data transmissions. Multiple GoI initiatives such as Digital India, Make in India, IoT COE by Nasscom, MeitY, and others will help digital focus. The Utility metering in gas, water, and electricity in India will be digital. Consumer experience will change dramatically with 5G. Agriculture's digital focus will continue in India. Cities will get smarter since digital traffic challans are already in place.

Prosenjit Sengupta, CDO, Thermax
Prosenjit is the CDO and a Member of the Executive Council of Thermax Group. He was awarded two consecutive years as the Top 50 CIO of India in 2017 by India’s Best and the Top 100 CIO/CTO of India in 2016 and 2018 by WorldCSRDay. He is also the proud Honoree of the CIO100 Award 2017 for Organizational transformation in Digital Technology. He has a rich experience of over 20 years in the automotive segment, having worked at Tata Motors Ltd. and Volkswagen.

Prosenjit is an achiever having varied experience in managing senior leadership positions. A thought leader in the sphere of CRM and DMS for the Automotive Industry and enabling revenue and profit generation through the use of collaborative IT between OE and Channel Partners - A Win-Win situation.

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Evolution of IOT Of India