Future-Proofing Big Data
The Internet of Things has changed how we interact with our technology on a fundamental level. Gartner predicts that at least 21 billion connected "things" will exist in the Internet of Things by 2020, with data volumes generated by the IoT expected to surpass the amount of data produced by social media.
The vast variety and magnitude of data generated by the IoT from mobile devices, sensors, and machine to machine (M2M) communications show no signs of slowing down, as data is constantly erupting out of everything from smart watches to sensor-loaded machinery and equipment. As this trend grows, it is no secret that all facets of daily life, from enterprise to home, will soon be internet-enabled and join the vast web of the Internet of Things.
As IoT data is becoming increasingly commonplace, businesses must look to future-proof their big data technology now, in order to take advantage and capitalize on the wealth of data they have flowing through their organization for years to come.
There are a few things businesses should keep in mind to future-proof their big data solution.
5G and IoT
5G describes the next generation of wireless networks, which are expected to reach speeds at least ten times faster than the current LTE (4G) networks with ultra-low latency.When 5G lands in the near future, the quantity of sensory data will explode, bringing much larger IoT datasets, transmitted and arriving at the target destination at even greater speeds. Thinking ahead, businesses must select a big data platform that is able to process this breadth and depth of information in real time in order to achieve dividends on their data.
While 5G is still in development, many tech evangelists predict that it could be in place as early as 2018, with the first networks expected to be commercially available by 2020. Many firms are already showcasing prototypes and demos of its capabilities.
Volume and Velocity
The volume and velocity of data being transmitted in the near future is potentially limitless. A fundamental issue to keep in mind is whether all of this data can be gathered, stored, and then analyzed in real time to maximize its value.The IoT presents a number of opportunities for companies, but it also presents plenty of challenges to those in the IT department, who need to gear up the organization’s infrastructure to match the increased quantity and speed of the data being created. It is crucial for organizations to put a big data solution in place that can ingest and collate the vast amount of information coming from these new data sources in real time.
Ingestion & Variety
Beyond the volume and speed of data, ingestion will be a crucial component to harnessing the full potential of IoT, especially as the 5G data explosion is imminent. The ingestion of data is the process of obtaining, importing, and processing data for immediate use or proper storage in a database. Organizations should look to deploy a big data solution that can easily capture any type of data, whether from a sensor-laden oil field, or a wearable fitness tracker, and move it between various server and software components. This will ensure the data can be accessed and manipulated in any number of different ways—from being stored for later analysis, to being filtered for real-time analytics, providing the business with fundamental and strategic insights.
Through future-proofing their big data system, most businesses today have an incredible opportunity to benefit strategically and financially from their data. With the Internet of Things disrupting the traditional big data landscape, and the 5G explosion imminent, businesses must look to implement a big data solution that has been designed for scale, efficiency, and the ability to support a massive number of distinct devices.
A future-proof big data platform can allow businesses to process the wealth of data coming from various sources in real time, without being slowed down by the volume, veracity, or variety of the 5G- ready IoT. Assembling this abundance of information as it happens can ultimately empower executives to find valuable insights in the data, contributing to informed, high frequency decisions, increased enterprise agility, awareness of key audiences, and a stronger business value proposition for years to come.
Tugdual Grall, an open source advocate and a passionate developer, is a Chief Technical Evangelist EMEA at MapR Technologies. He currently works with the European developer communities to ease MapR, Hadoop, and NoSQL adoption.