Martin Thunman, CEO and co-founder of Crosser explains how edge solutions provide the necessary support for this data storage.
Gartner expects that by 2022 more than 50% of enterprise-generated data will be created and processed outside the traditional data centre or cloud. With the explosion of the Internet of Things (IoT), the amount of data devices collect is becoming so vast that it cannot all be stored and monitored in the cloud. This is why industry needs to invest in edge solutions. Martin Thunman, CEO and co-founder of low-code platform for streaming analytics, automation and integration for industrial IoT, Crosser, explains more.
As industry migrates its data to the cloud at an ever-quickening pace, sending every fragment of raw data, and from every single machine, will not deliver value. IoT technologies can benefit every industry – whether that’s connected cars, smart factories, or even retail environments. To get this data faster and in a more secure and cost-effective way, companies need to turn to edge computing.
On the edge
Low code and edge computing are two of the biggest current technology trends. At its basic level, edge computing brings data storage closer to the device where it’s being gathered.
An edge gateway, for example, can process data from an edge device, then send only the relevant data back through the cloud to reduce bandwidth needs.
Alternatively, it can send data back to the edge device to meet real-time application needs. Low code platforms increase productivity and bridge different departments and skill sets within an IoT project, enabling innovation for both developers and non-developers in the same environment.
Founded in 2016, Crosser describes its own platform as an interface that simplifies development, innovation and collaboration in its users’ internal teams. Its low code-based software handles analysis, automation and integration so that users do not have to send more data than necessary to the cloud.
Specifically, Crosser aims to provide edge solutions to the manufacturing industry. This is because, generally speaking, operations in manufacturing are complex and plant managers have access to a lot of data. But often they are unsure how to manage it.
Currently, only 32% of data available to enterprises is put to work. The remaining 68% goes unleveraged, according to research by Seagate Technologies. With so many connected assets, manufacturers see the value in collecting operational data. However, the raw data that’s collected is not providing the solution it was intended to offer – that of a decision-making engine.
A single machine creates a wealth of data at any given moment. Take, for example, a temperature sensor that constantly sends data that it is 19 degrees Celsius. The cloud doesn’t need to receive that data continually. Instead, manufacturing facilities need to be able to automatically structure data, and send only a relevant amount to the cloud.
Users can choose not to send data unless it has changed, or an average temperature recording is sent instead. If a facility handles such processes at the edge of networks, it is possible to send a value every 10 minutes instead of every second, which provides enormous data savings.
Organising this data, and taking what’s useful, will help plug the gap that’s causing manufacturing to fall behind in its digital development.
A bright future
Crosser was founded to help businesses handle their data at the edge of their networks. While this mission remains the same today, further investment is driving the company forwards.
Recently, a €3m investment from Japanese NTT Docomo Ventures and German Montan Ventures-Saar gave Crosser the opportunity to reach further into the Japanese and German markets, where the company intends to expand its operations.
NTT Docomo Ventures is the investment branch of the technology giant NTT Group, while Montan-Ventures-Saar is a venture capital company with roots in the Saarland steel industry in Germany. Currently, Crosser operates in over 20 countries. With this investment boost, the company hopes to expand its reach and develop stronger relationships in two high-potential regions. The funding will be used to develop the platform further, and partially build up a dealer network.
As a relatively new company that’s growing in an area of innovation, Crosser adapts a laser focus to stay ahead of competition. “We must assume that the technology we’re developing today will be in the hands of competitors in a few years’ time – and we need to continue to adapt to keep ahead’, says Crosser.
Industry is recognising that not all data needs to head up to the cloud and, with continued investment and innovation, Crosser is ready to support manufacturers as they start to do more with their data.