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In 2021, APIs will give industrial equipment a voice

Jan. 4, 2021
"Cloud APIs have transformed the tech industry, and with it, our digital economy."

By Olivier Pauzet, SVP of IoT products and solutions at Sierra Wireless

Last year we saw many industries undergo massive transformation as a result of the pandemic, and this year we’ll get to see the degree to which these transformations are here to stay. 

2021 will be the year industrial companies begin seeing their markets transformed by APIs, as more of these companies begin using Industrial IoT APIs to enable industrial air compressors, water heaters, storage tanks and other industrial assets to talk to the cloud. 

Cloud APIs have transformed the tech industry, and with it, our digital economy. By enabling SaaS and other cloud-based applications to easily and securely talk to each other, cloud APIs have vastly expanded the value of these applications to users. APIs have also spawned billion-dollar companies like Stripe, Tableau, and Twilio, whose API-focused business models have transformed the online-payments, data-visualization, and customer-service markets.

Using new edge-to-cloud solutions with built-in Industrial IoT APIs for Modbus and other industrial-communications protocols, these companies will be able to connect these assets to the cloud almost as easily as if this equipment was a cloud-based application.

In fact, by simply plugging a low-cost IoT gateway with these Industrial IoT APIs into their industrial equipment, they will be able to deploy Industrial IoT applications that allow them to remotely monitor, maintain and control this equipment. Then, using these Industrial IoT applications, they can lower equipment downtime, reduce maintenance costs, launch new Equipment-as-a-Service business models, and innovate faster.

Industrial companies have been trying to connect their assets to the cloud for years, but have been stymied by the complexity, time, and the expense involved in doing so. In 2021, Industrial IoT APIs will provide these companies with a way to simply, quickly and cheaply connect this equipment to the cloud. By giving a voice to billions of pieces of industrial equipment, these Industrial IoT APIs will help bring about the productivity, sustainability, and other benefits of Industry 4.0 has long promised.

2021 will, without a doubt, be a much different year than the one we just came out of, for a number of reasons. With change comes new opportunities for growth and that’s exactly what we’ll see as we begin to move through this year. It will be the players who jump on that change that will be the force to really drive this industry forward.