“We can claim Hitachi is in a league of its own for the IoT market, having such a vast experience on both Operation Technologies and IT”

Hitachi Vantara is a new business entity designed to take advantage of the broad portfolio of innovation, development and experience of the Hitachi Group companies to offer data-driven solutions to commercial and industrial companies.

This new company will unify the operations of Hitachi Data Systems, Hitachi Insight Group and Pentaho in a unique integrated business like Hitachi Vantara to capitalize on Hitachi’s social innovation capacity in operational technologies (OT) and information technologies. (IT, for its acronym in English).

Daniel Olaso, IoT & Big Data Solution Engineer Iberia Lead and speaker at LIBRECON powered by CEBIT explains the details of this bet.

1. What is the role Hitachi Vantara plays in the IoT and Analytics market?

Hitachi has more than 100 years of experience in Industrial environments, designing and producing operational technologies for transportation, manufacturing, construction, healthcare, energy and robotics. On the other hand, Hitachi also has 60 years of experience on Enterprise IT and we are trusted by 85% of Fortune Global 100 Corporations. IoT is the blending of the Operation Technologies (machines) and Information Technologies to drive more efficient operations, optimizing uptime, reducing costs and generating new revenues. So, we can claim Hitachi is in a league of its own for the IoT market, having such a vast experience on both OT and IT, plus the required domain expertise for understanding the data and the business use cases.

Finally, IoT cannot be understood without analytics. In fact, analytics is the goal of IoT and there is no business case or ROI without it. This is the reason why Hitachi acquired Pentaho in 2015, to be able to blend OT and IT at scale and industrialize all work around data and Machine Learning. Hitachi Vantara is Hitachi’s business unit that consolidates all these capabilities.

2. What are the challenges around IoT?

IoT integrates data points from operational environments in order to monitor health of the existing assets. However, most of the times there is no real value if data from different sources are not correlated to create more advanced KPI and predictive models for driving real business value. In manufacturing, for instance, it is key to correlate the status of the shop floor with the enterprise business systems, in order to evaluate the machines health with regard to the current business context, looking at orders, logistics, parts, sifts, etc.

Therefore, IoT is mainly facing data challenges, not just acquisition of real-time data at scale, but also data preparation, data correlation and complex machine learning execution. Our approach to solve these challenges is focusing on data and process orchestration, so that we can simplify and take control of the processes at scale. IoT is not an experiment that one can build having a short-term mindset, but it requires robust industrialization to avoid new risks on future OT operations.

3. Why Pentaho and what is the value it brings to IoT and complex Big Data environments?

Pentaho is an open-source End-to-End Analytics platform that blends OT and IT at scale and it is the main component of Hitachi Lumada IoT platform. We have an active Community that brings innovative contributions, and also an Enterprise Edition fully supported by Hitachi Vantara with advanced capabilities. Pentaho orchestrates all data processes from data acquisition to visualization, ensuring that the work with data is industrialized. We provide data integration, data preparation, data correlation, data processing both in real-time and batch, machine learning orchestration to ensure predictive model health over time, analytics model definition and visualization. The areas we bring more value to are IoT and Big Data use cases, due to the data complexity and challenges around it, and we are able dramatically reduce the time to value while ensuring continuity and future evolutions.