Big data will be a key driver of future decisions in product development. But how big is Big Data? Microsoft evangelist, Mike Opal, knows the answer. He told us that from the dawn of time until 2009, the human race generated 0.8 Zettabytes of data. (1.0 Zb is a billion Terabytes.)
Microsoft forecasts that by 2015, the total data volume will have grown to 8.0 Zb and by 2020 it will reach a whopping 35.0 Zb. Thats 44X the volume in 2009. Even in 2014, the figure is close to 7.0 Zb. Thats a number that should get any CEO, IT strategist or CIO thinking about the opportunities and consequences of big data for product development.
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How is Big Data Relevant to Product Development?
Ray Wang of Constellation Research says even unstructured data can
support product decision processes. Used properly, that data can
provide insights insights well beyond traditional reporting.
Mike Opal says Big Data, "is actually one of the major challenges of
our time; a watershed between the companies that understand how to read
large volumes of data, versus those who dont."
This is a tough conclusion from Opal, yet he is not alone in his
analysis. IDC analyst, Thomasz Sloniewski studies how data can affect
industrial product development, manufacturing and after-sales related
processes. In this TV Report, he speaks about what is it that generates
big data in these contexts.
"A vast topic", he says, "but roughly I would describe it like this:
People, companies and organizations are constantly on-line; they consume
and interact with developers, manufacturers, distributors and suppliers
- aftermarket and maintenance areas included."
Product as a Service will depend on Big Data
Sloniewski continued, "A distinctive feature of this is the
Product-as-a-Service concept." Today consumers and companies tend to
be more interested in the functionalities and services they can get from
products. This means that cars, trucks, construction equipment, energy
solutions, washers and other things are increasingly getting connected
to the internet. And with sensors, M2M (Machine-to-Machine) and The
Internet of Things, we get smart, data-generating products, smart
manufacturing, smart homes, etc. These are some of the primary driving
forces creating "tsunamis" of data..."
Wang agrees, pointing out that a large portion of the important
decisions that will be made regarding in-field maintenance, for example,
will be automated. So humans wont have to contend with all the data,
but they will be on the hook to draw the right conclusions.
Are there solutions on the market now that can help product
development teams manage big data? Vendors such as SAP, IFS, Ericsson
and PTC all believe they have value to offer product developers by
parsing and interpreting big data.
Verdi and Felix round out this report with insightful case studies,
including one from aerospace company Saab who has leveraged big data to
change their business model. Through tracking sensors on the planes
over their 20+ year life, Saab has been able to change their business
from selling aircraft to providing flight hours.
This TV Report is worth a watch. In it youll get insights from: