Ahead of the game?

Keith Mister, Product Manager at Drax Technology

The fire alarm management industry is already using smart devices, says Keith Minster, product manager of Drax Technology.

Do you read those articles that predict the ‘hot technologies’ for the year ahead? If so, you’ll know that the Internet of Things (IoT) has featured in almost every one as THE big thing of 2016.

However, the narrative surrounding each mention differed greatly. The Internet of Things (IoT) is either going to save the world or is “a solution in search of a problem” it seems.

While I don’t believe that IoT is the answer to every question known to man, I can’t help thinking that whoever made the comment about solutions and problems certainly wasn’t a facilities manager or, indeed, connected with fire prevention.

In case there are still a few people around who don’t know about the IoT, I’ll explain. It describes a world where devices and objects have network connectivity, allowing them to send and receive data. If you need proof of its commercial potential, I’ll just remind you that Google spent $3.2 billion to acquire Nest, a company which enables the connection of thermostats to smoke detectors and smart phones.

In the sphere of building management, the concept is really not so new. In many areas sensors are already being used to monitor and buildings, their systems and their occupants, providing the data to make informed choices around comfort, safety, security, resources and more.

Soon Fire marshall (FMs) and others will be able to view, integrate and analyse data from multiple different devices. This way they can get a snapshot view of the performance of their entire global portfolio on their smartphone or tablet, wherever they are.

For those outside the sector this may not sound a big deal. However take just one aspect of this; the management of the fire alarm system. Even if the task of monitoring and managing the system is outsourced (as it often is) the building, facilities manager or owner is ultimately responsible. Yet a typical portfolio will include buildings with a complete mix of different systems, even within the same building.

Consequently, it’s almost impossible to know the current status, even if they have the event log from the fire alarm control panel to demonstrate a system has been tested. They are at the mercy of their chosen maintenance company – but if something does go wrong, they will get the blame.

So new, intelligent systems such as Drax Technology’s SMaRT Web can integrate information from almost every make of fire alarm systems via the internet, so it can be viewed on mobiles, laptops or tablets from anywhere in the world. This data can also be used for compliance purposes and prove that whoever is responsible has done everything they can to ensure a building is safe.

Whether you call it smart, intelligent or the IoT (or all three), it’s very much a solution to a problem, rather than the other way around.

The author of this blog is Keith Mister, product manager at Drax Technology.

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_ OR @jcIoTnow

RECENT ARTICLES

What Matter? – The newly smart home standard

Posted on: December 2, 2022

Matter is an industry-unifying IoT wireless network standard that still needs to be released. It strives to become a reliant, frictionless, safe communication basis for connected objects. The project was announced and started in 2019. By utilising a specific collection of IP-based networking technologies, initiating with Thread, wi-fi, and Ethernet, Matter is a platform built

Read more

Ericsson, Thales launches IoT accelerator device connect with eSIMs for enterprises

Posted on: December 2, 2022

Ericsson’s Internet of Things (IoT) business, in partnership with Thales, launches IoT Accelerator Device Connect, a service offering generic eSIMs unbundled from pre-selected Service Providers. For the first time, enterprises have the flexibility to select one or more Service Providers easily and instantly at the time of device activation. This new business model dramatically accelerates

Read more
FEATURED IoT STORIES

The IoT Adoption Boom – Everything You Need to Know

Posted on: September 28, 2022

In an age when we seem to go through technology boom after technology boom, it’s hard to imagine one sticking out. However, IoT adoption, or the Internet of Things adoption, is leading the charge to dominate the next decade’s discussion around business IT. Below, we’ll discuss the current boom, what’s driving it, where it’s going,

Read more

9 IoT applications that will change everything

Posted on: September 1, 2021

Whether you are a future-minded CEO, tech-driven CEO or IT leader, you’ve come across the term IoT before. It’s often used alongside superlatives regarding how it will revolutionize the way you work, play, and live. But is it just another buzzword, or is it the as-promised technological holy grail? The truth is that Internet of

Read more

Which IoT Platform 2021? IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide

Posted on: August 30, 2021

There are several different parts in a complete IoT solution, all of which must work together to get the result needed, write IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide – Which IoT Platform 2021? authors Robin Duke-Woolley, the CEO and Bill Ingle, a senior analyst, at Beecham Research. Figure 1 shows these parts and, although not all

Read more

CAT-M1 vs NB-IoT – examining the real differences

Posted on: June 21, 2021

As industry players look to provide the next generation of IoT connectivity, two different standards have emerged under release 13 of 3GPP – CAT-M1 and NB-IoT.

Read more

IoT and home automation: What does the future hold?

Posted on: June 10, 2020

Once a dream, home automation using iot is slowly but steadily becoming a part of daily lives around the world. In fact, it is believed that the global market for smart home automation will reach $40 billion by 2020.

Read more

5 challenges still facing the Internet of Things

Posted on: June 3, 2020

The Internet of Things (IoT) has quickly become a huge part of how people live, communicate and do business. All around the world, web-enabled devices are turning our world into a more switched-on place to live.

Read more

What is IoT?

Posted on: July 7, 2019

What is IoT Data as a new oil IoT connectivity What is IoT video So what’s IoT? The phrase ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) is officially everywhere. It constantly shows up in my Google news feed, the weekend tech supplements are waxing lyrical about it and the volume of marketing emails I receive advertising ‘smart, connected

Read more