IoT is already helping buildings to become smarter, as this technology is capable of connecting thousands of sensors and allowing for real-time data collection and analysis that will make buildings more efficient and more user friendly.
Swedish smart building research firm Memoori believes that the IoT has had a transformative effect on smart building automation and control in recent years, disrupting long-established business models and offering significant new opportunities to improve the efficiency of buildings, raise employee productivity, as well as helping to stimulate the development of innovative new services.
Memoori had forecast that the global market for the Internet of Things in Buildings (BIoT) will continue to expand significantly over the next years from $34.8 billion at the end of 2017 to $84.2 billion by 2022, representing a compound annual growth rate of 19.4%. The European research firm revealed that Asia-Pacific will be the largest market in terms of adoption of IoT in buildings, representing 36% of the global market by 2022. North America follows in terms of market size, but will decline in overall global importance from 30.9% in 2017 to 27.7% by 2022.
“From an IoT perspective, you’re not going to have smart buildings without IoT. IoT is really going to enable the entire ecosystem to create the actual smart building, so if you think about all the IoT type sensors that we deploy, the Building Management System (BMS ) is technically an extension of IoT capabilities,” Greg Corlis, managing director for emerging technologies and national IoT leader at KPMG US, told In-Building Tech.
“We’re starting to see a significant uptick in clients asking to move forward with smart building initiatives. Definitely any new building that is being built needs to be built from the ground up as a smart building. It does not make sense not to leverage IoT-type technologies for that facility. Just trying to go the traditional route and not embedding these types of technologies doesn’t make a lot of sense,” Corlis said.
The integration of legacy infrastructure with IoT sensors and applications, newer networks and cloud services is the key to making buildings truly smart, said Apurba Pradhan, VP of product marketing, systems and software at Adesto Technologies, a California-based provider of application-specific semiconductors and embedded systems for the IoT.
“Though the concepts of smart buildings and the IoT are relatively recent phenomena, building automation and management systems have been available for a number of years, used to operate and monitor lighting, security, HVAC, and other building systems. However, these are traditionally standalone systems without the ability to easily connect or integrate with other devices and networks,” the executive said.
Through this integration, building managers can extract meaningful data that will enable them to benefit from other technologies such as AI and achieve return on investment.
Pradhan noted that wired connectivity will continue to play a strong role in networking the core operational infrastructure of smart buildings, including HVAC, elevators/escalators, access control, lighting and emergency systems, while 5G will play a key role in other smart building systems. “These systems are embedded with a high degree of need for local networking using industry-standard protocols which will not be replaced with 5G anytime soon. However, systems for people tracking, asset tracking, and other user/tenant facing technology including security cameras will likely go the way of 5G due to the flexibility of the network,” he said.
Adesto Technologies also highlighted that AI and analytics can add value for building managers in certain areas including energy management, improved space utilization, enhanced safety, and more efficient operations/maintenance.
“The widespread use of these technologies [5G, AI and IoT] will depends on the level of integration. One of the most widespread areas will be in the area of smart lighting networks with occupancy data for space analytics. We are also seeing adoption in the area of smart predictive energy management systems. Perhaps less widespread at this time are predictive management of building equipment and assets, and augmented reality for maintenance operations,” Pradhan added.
RCR Wireless News recently published an editorial report analyzing how 5G, IoT and other technologies will shape future smart buildings. Click here to have access to the full report.