What's the difference between the Internet of Things and Big Data? That's not really the best question to ask, because these two are much more alike than they are different. And they complement each other very strongly which is one reason we've written a white paper on the convergence.
Big data is all about enabling organizations to use more of the data around them: things customers write in social media; log files from applications and processes; sensor and device data. And there's IoT! One way to think of it is as one of the sources for big data.
But IoT is more than that. It's about collecting all that data, analyzing it in real time for events or patterns of interest, and making sure to integrate any new insight into the rest of your business. With you add the rest of big data to IoT, there's much more data to work with and powerful big data analytics to come up with additional insights.
Best to look at an example. Using IoT you can track and monitor assets like trucks, engines, HVAC systems, and pumps. You can correct problems as you detect them. With big data, you can analyze all the information you have about failures and start to uncover the root causes. Combine the two and now you can not just react to problems as they occur. You can predict them, and fix them before they occur. Go from being reactive to being proactive.
Check out this infographic. The last data point, down at the bottom right hand side may be the most important one. Only 8% of businesses are fully capturing and analyzing IoT data in a timely fashion.
Nobody likes to arrive last to a party and find the food and drink all gone. This party's just getting started. You should be asking every vendor you deal with how they can help you take advantage of IoT and big data - they really are better together, and there's lots of opportunity. Next post will highlight 3 customers who are taking advantage of that opportunity.