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IoT Technology in the Consumer Products Industry

The saturation of IoT Technology in consumer products makes identifying the best platform for your product or service difficult. With so much competition, IoT platforms that focus on a niche market or function have gained popularity. Some key differentiating characteristics to consider when deciding on IoT technology includes ease of implementation, communication of ROI, system architecture, vertical market solutions, horizontal solution completeness and the ecosystems of partners.

Here are some IoT companies offering services, devices, and platforms that are helping to revolutionize the consumer products industry:

Arrayent is a software-as-a-service solution IoT platform founded in 2005 by Shane Dyer and acquired in 2017 by Prodea Systems, Inc. The company has connected hundreds of consumer products to the Internet of Things making them Smart Devices. Some of their customers include P&G, Whirlpool, Pentair and Chamberlain Group. They offer smart home, cloud-based surveillance, and control and automation services. Arrayent worked with Maytag to create a software, Maytag Connect 360° that monitored and communicated machine usage, maintenance issues, and end-user alters. This creates more efficient systems in multi-unit complexes and university housing systems for users, property owners. This connected system can reduce services costs, saving one of the two trips typically required in maintenance work, and increase availability for users.

Auximiti is a small, highly niched IoT start-up founded in 2016. This company uses proximity awareness technology in the form of beacons that help retailers better understand the personalities of their existing and prospective shoppers. These beacons and accompanying software can understand the number of customers in the store, the number of return customers, drive nearby consumers to the store, track spending behavior and mobile use of the stores’ visitors. It can also connect with customers through direct and targeted messaging. Auximiti has future plans to build an AI-enabled infrastructure that allows for greater data acquisition and market intelligence. They also plan to hire data experts to help retailers overcome decision-making barriers quickly to boost ROI.

FoodLogiQ is a SaaS provider of food safety compliance, traceability, and supply chain transparency software solutions. The company helps restaurant operators, food retailers, and other food companies achieve end-to-end traceability while supporting safe and high-quality food products across the supply chain. FoodLogiQ Connect is an online supplier community platform used by food companies to manage quality, safety, audit, regulatory compliance and traceability needs across their supply chains. FoodLogiQ has partnered with Testo, Inc., the global leader of portable HACCP and IoT capabilities, to pave the way for integration between Testo’s Saveris Quality Management capabilities and the FoodLogiQ Connect platform. Notable FoodLogiQ customers include Buffalo Wild Wings, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Compass Group USA, Hain Celestial Group, IPC/Subway, Tyson Foods, and Whole Foods Market.

Honeywell IoT is focused on the Industrial Internet of Things, meaning they are focused on manufacturers to boost productivity. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is the most efficient key to the backbone to a number of consumer businesses. All companies can use IoT platforms and services to connect to their customers and better predict their wants and needs; however, in order to deliver on customers wants the warehouse building them needs to be operating smoothly. Honeywell IoT helps with supply chain optimization and can reduce risks of potential shutdowns through sensors and controllers placed around the plant. Honeywell IoT’s parent company, Honeywell, establishes this platform as having a deep understating of mechanics, engineering and IT.

Losant creates an easy-to-use, personalized platform. Their data visualizations and flexibility set them apart from other IoT platforms, including a drag and drop editor that allows users to highlight the data that is important to them. The company, founded in 2015, offers a wide range of supported hardware including Google, Dell, and others. They advertise solutions across many industries including Industrial IoT, asset tracking, smart cities, and smart retail, but many of their current clients are from the mechanical industry. Losant worked with C & D Mechanical, an industrial plumbing services company, to install GPS devices on their tools to better track their assets to minimize the tool’s time in transit. Losant also created an internal platform that allowed C&D to view the exact location of every item in inventory in real-time. This project decreased inventory loss by 100% and increased productivity by 10%.

Vantiq was founded in 2014 and is an IoT platform that offers a variety of services, from field service management, supply chain, and fleet control, smart manufacturing, environmental monitoring, dynamic customer service, and smart cities. Vantiq can manage flows of virtual assets like data or money, or physical ones like retail or shipping fleets. The small company is growing at a fast pace. In late 2017, Vantiq hired two new members to their executive team, a chief marketing officer and a chief revenue officer for North American sales. Some of their recent partnerships include working with Canon IT Solutions Inc. in Tokyo, which will provide greater access to companies outside the U.S.

As businesses in the consumer products industry navigate the IoT world, it’s clear that options are plentiful to drive innovation and change in operations, sales, marketing, and more through IoT. Effective IoT projects will incorporate a strong alignment of business objectives with technology capabilities, solid data governance, and management foundation, and cross-functional collaboration across the areas of your business. Contact us to learn more about how Clarkston and Clarkston Technology Solutions can evolve your IoT initiatives.

Co-author and contributions by Emily Brice.

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Tags: Consumer Products Trends, eCommerce, IT Strategy