The Internet of Things (IoT) is proving to be a transformative force for many businesses, regardless of industry. Yet, there are a few sectors that can benefit from this concept in particular – and both start-ups and small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) seem to be well aware of that, as new ventures offering powerful IoT solutions emerge.
Before digging deeper into the Internet of Things, meet top IoT start-ups within rapidly developing industries, says Emil Waszkowski, growth manager & business analyst at Future Mind.
Until recently, advanced IoT solutions were only reserved for large companies with substantial budgets. With tech innovations taking hold of society and becoming more accessible, though, start-ups and SMEs started to take advantage of IoT as well. Still, using IoT in practice is one thing – but developing proper IoT devices to serve consumers and enterprises is a completely different story.
All start-ups nowadays are essentially built around technology, and that’s hardly surprising. Anyone interested in starting a business simply shouldn’t ignore the massive potential of new technologies, especially IoT. In fact, according to Crunchbase, more than 26,000 startups are already relying on IoT as one of their main technologies to launch new products and services. It’s clear to see that IoT applications hold great potential for many business ventures, no matter the industry.
It might be the reason why worldwide spending on the Internet of Things is on the rise – and may even surpass the US$1 trillion (€0.88 trillion) mark in 2022, as IDC reports. Yet, there are a few sectors that can benefit from IoT solutions in particular.
According to the Boston Consulting Group, by 2020 almost half of overall spending on IoT is expected to be driven by manufacturing, as well as transportation and logistics. Forbes Insights and Intel also add healthcare to the list of industries that have a lot to gain from applying the Internet of Things in practice – and the use cases within these industries have truly been remarkable.
IoT start-ups are already enabling new business models, solving some of the most challenging problems and truly transforming industries that are involved with IoT the most. And here’s how.
Top IoT start-ups in manufacturing industry
So far, optimising core manufacturing processes along with reducing costs are top priorities for this industry, and IoT can clearly make that easier.
As a matter of fact, more and more organisations are starting to take advantage of it, and many of them trust newly-emerged IoT solutions when transforming their enterprises.
The most prominent IoT startups in the industry are, above all:
- FogHorn – which embeds real-time analytics and Machine-Learning support into industrial IoT applications. The idea came from the realisation that there is often unreliable Internet connection (or no connection at all) in factories and distribution sites, which makes a difference when taking advantage of IoT solutions. Thus, Foghorn designed a miniaturised, yet scalable complex-event processing (CEP) software engine that is able to produce advanced analytics in real time. The result? Basically, it allows implementing Machine Learning and AI within highly constrained environments of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). And it must be doing a pretty good job, since it’s already partnered up with Cisco, Google Cloud and Hewlett Packard Enterprise, just to name a few;
- MachineMetrics – is an interesting startup to watch as well – it uses AI to discover new insights from manufacturer’s data in order to improve product quality and performance. In fact, it happens to be one of the very first startups which combined IIoT and AI to provide a scalable platform for discrete manufacturers and heavy equipment builders. The aim of its solution is to increase equipment productivity and efficiency through Industrial IoT edge connectivity, real-time visibility, advanced analytics, as well as predictive and prescriptive alerts;
- Sight machine – operates in a similar way, yet already attracts Fortune 500-level manufacturers as clients by providing them with AI-driven insights into their operations. No wonder – the platform was built with discrete and process manufacturing in mind. What’s more impressive about it, though, is that Sight Machine actually enables real-time visibility and insights for every machine, line, and plant, making it possible to address critical challenges in quality and productivity within the enterprises;
- Altizon – is another startup that serves a similar purpose, which is to revolutionise factories through the use of edge computing, sensors, Big Data, Machine Learning, and enterprise-ready integrations. Its IIoT software platform easily integrates connected devices within enterprise IT, connecting all assets and helping manufacturers make informed, data-driven decisions in the long run. As a result, they are able to determine the effectiveness of their production system environments, optimise their energy use, and make quality improvements.
Top IoT start-ups in transportation and logistics
Powerful IoT solutions don’t belong only to the manufacturing industry, though. Smart IoT sensors are also able to monitor the parameters of different vehicles and thus, alert their owners whenever any issue arises.
Still, apart from keeping an eye on vehicle health and ensuring safe transportation, it’s possible to optimise other factors, such as fuel consumption – which doesn’t only help reduce costs but also eliminate the need for manual reporting.
Such solutions are especially relevant for companies owning large fleets of vehicles, but these are not only enterprises that can partner up with top IoT startups in the industry:
- Karamba Security focuses on, as you may have already guessed, the security challenges of connected vehicles. The company offers Electronic Control Unit (ECU) endpoint security to protect any vehicle with an IoT connection. Basically, it “seals” the vehicle computing environment to block cyber attacks, maximise security and ensure passenger safety, without impacting automotive performance;
- Valerann, on the other hand, specialises in enhancing safety on the roads. It uses wireless sensors, a communication system in an IoT network to collect relevant data and provide drivers and road operators with real-time information of hazards, road traffic, weather and road conditions. Although the system is still being improved, Valerann has ambitious plans – making roads smart everywhere around the globe and becoming the leading data provider of the intelligent transportation industry;
- Automatic – may not aim that high but still has a great IoT solution in place, which also lets you worry less on the road. As a “connected car assistant”, it gives you more knowledge about your car and keeps an eye on your safety. Quite literally, actually – in case of a car crash, it contacts you, emergency services, and even your loved ones when detecting a serious accident;
- ConnectedBoat – on the other hand, lets you keep track of slightly different vehicles (as the name suggests). Its solution is meant for fleet owners and ensures the safety of boats at all times – when you are on it or when you leave it in the marina. It constantly monitors key parameters of the vessels through smart IoT sensors and provides easy access to relevant information that streamlines servicing and maintenance of each boat thanks to its mobile app. Plus, the app also notifies you when there’s an issue or potential danger.
Examples of top IoT start-ups in healthcare
The healthcare industry has probably the most exceptional use cases since they are all about keeping patients safe and sound while making it easier for physicians to perform their daily tasks.
Remote health monitoring is a popular example – but the list of powerful IoT healthcare solutions doesn’t end here. These startups can truly be game changers within the industry very soon:
- MedAngelONE – helps all people who are using temperature-sensitive meds (such as insulin, biologics or hormones) to actually keep the drugs safe. Constantly controlling the right storage conditions is not easy, yet it’s extremely important, as excessive heat or cold affect the properties of such medicines. Powerful IoT sensors, though, can become wireless thermometers and detect any changes in the temperature. The owner then gets notified through the mobile app if there’s any intervention needed;
- Amiko – also enables remote monitoring, but it keeps an eye directly on your health. Actually, telehealth is now considered as the most common example of IoT solutions in healthcare – yet not many startups can do as much as this one does. It uses advanced sensor technologies and AI-powered mobile health solutions to monitor the health of their patients and assist healthcare professionals. This, in turn, makes it possible to address chronic diseases, achieve better outcomes during medical treatment, and even keep some of the patients out of the hospital;
- SWORD health – on the other hand, offers easier access to physical therapy and makes it more affordable. Its mobile app can easily serve as a digital therapist, delivering personalised routines to those who are in need of physical therapy. Thus, they can exercise at home, track their progress with a range of wearable motion sensors, and recover faster with professional help – without actually going anywhere;
- Aira – is an extraordinary example as well since it uses IoT solutions to provide help to blind and visually impaired people. As a matter of fact, the platform is able to give a realistic interaction with the physical world through auditory perception and reliable smartphone connection. This, in turn, helps enhance the everyday experience of those who are visually impaired.
Driving change with IoT applications
Internet of Things can be used in different industries, providing space for software developers to create ground-breaking IoT applications and bring the offline world online. It’s clear to see that the revolution has already been happening, with innovative IoT startups emerging more and more frequently.
This, in turn, helps to create an ecosystem of connected devices, that generates a massive amount of data and has the power to enhance the way we live and do business. Stay tuned, as those newcomers might soon transform your industry as well.
The author of this blog is Emil Waszkowski, growth manager & business analyst at Future Mind, a full stack software development company that designs and implements mobile, web and IoT projects, including ConnectedBoat.