Have you ever heard about the Internet of Things? Of course, you have. The IoT is mentioned in the IT Trends 2018, it is a part of the Big Data revolution and base for “Smart Life” systems. Everyone knows what is the Internet of Things, and how it may change our lives in the future. Nowadays the IoT is widely used in smart healthcare devices, wearables, connected cars, agriculture, and retail. In this article, we will describe how the IoT is implemented in logistic, based on the experience of Inoxoft developers.
Real-Time Visibility of the Warehouses Operations
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One of the cases where the IoT is a “must-have”, is the warehouses’ operations. Advanced technologies ensure that every square meter of the warehouse is efficiently utilized and all processes are well organized. The latest IoT technologies allow 24/7 monitoring of the warehouse. A real-time monitoring could provide data regarding volume and size, damage detections and prevent costly out-of-stock situations. Premises are equipped with sensors, which are analyzing temperature and humidity, amount of workers in different parts of the room, damages, and overload on shelves. The system also tracks places where incidents are possible, like broken (or almost broken) shelves or pallets and gives signals to managing staff to fix it. Development of the IoT in warehouses operations will not only facilitate the working process for staff but also it will improve the level of customer satisfaction. Ordering online the perishables, customers, using the smartphone application, will be able to check upon arrival, if the correct temperature was maintained during transportation. The same tool can be used for scanning products at supermarkets. A consumer could check if the ideal temperature has been maintained from the moment the poultry was packaged until it reaches the home refrigerator. In a growing B2C market for pharmaceutical goods, the end consumer could check the integrity of the medical product before use.
Improved Logistic – the Highest Quality of Delivered Products
Conditions of the warehouses’ operations strongly impact the final product quality. At the same time, if transportation didn’t go well – the result will be dissatisfying. Both processes should be precisely monitored and analyzed in order to get a high-quality product. Transportation of goods within cities, countries or even continents requires accurate analysis of various factors. The provider of goods should take care of the distance, quality of roads, borders and, of course, the temperature and humidity inside the cargo transport. Even if the smartest managers and analysts prepare cargo truck for the trip and the best drivers are driving to the destination point – not all situations may be predicted. Some refrigerators may break in the middle of the way, a temperature may differ in particular parts of the truck, or due to weather conditions temperature and humidity level should be adjusted. The Inoxoft team of developers took a challenge creating a set of software and hardware resolving those problems. The custom IoT system was built to address the following challenges:
- internet connection crashes;
- reciprocal connection within the entire system of interconnected devices;
- temperature/humidity change.
The truck is equipped with sensors that monitor humidity and temperature in different parts of the cargo and signals if some of the indicators should be regulated.
Remote Control via Mobile Application
The data collected from sensors is sent to the gateway (hub). From there, the data travels to the GSM module that stores and sends it to the instance of establishing a connection with the internet. The logistic agents using the mobile application, monitor and set the temperature and humidity to the appropriate level. All this is possible thanks to Microsoft Azure Cloud system used to empower the end users to see the instant updates and to enable quick analysis of reports and protocols.
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Implementing the Internet of Things into logistics turns up with a lot of advantages. First of all, in the B2B operations, both partners are sure that delivered products will retain their quality. Secondly, the provider of goods will not face an unexpected loss of money caused by spoiled products. Last but definitely not least, is the high level of customer satisfaction. Consumers will buy products presented by your company, as they will be sure in quality.