GE is banking on Internet of Things

The 'Industrial Internet' as what GE's CEO Jeff Immelt called it, he wants GE to capitalize on it, hopefully to revolutionize it, but not to own it - "nobody can really own the Industrial Internet", quipped Jeff during the D11 conference.

GE was invited to D11 partly motivated by its recent move to setup more presence in the Silicon Valley. Jeff explained that it was really a move to become more integrated with the main stream computer and software industry, to mix with the right community and to work with and hire the best minds in the industry.

With the strategy on 'Industry Internet' - which is analogous to Internet of Things trend - GE has hoped to create new businesses for both its enterprise and consumer markets by offering value added services on top of its existing assets such as jet engines, turbines, medical equipments and etc.

Jeff explained that for example, a typical jet engine from GE would have been fitted with 20 sensors which collect data about temperatures, turbine structures and etc. These information can be used for many purposes which will include product enhancement and establish further technical leadership in the market place.

More interestingly, Jeff pointed out that GE has an even better noble intention, that is to exert a better control of its products in order to serve customers better. While it is true that without data or information, there is nothing to measure; without measurement, there is no way to manage things.

By hiring mathematicians and data scientists to perform analytics and data modelling, the following feats can be achieved:

  • No unplanned downtime
  • Asset optimization
  • Advanced simulation and disaster planning

My personal take on this is that aside from being able to compete better in the market place and to clear up backlog, this is also a good opportunity for GE to capitalize on the Internet industry, big data & analytics and Silicon Valley!

What I learned from here is that analytics is really getting on more momentum especially in the area  of scientific research. Nonetheless, it looks like GE is not looking forward to acquire any big data solutions, they want to build their own.


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