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Today VMware unveiled a secure, enterprise-grade Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure management solution that will enable IT and operational technology (OT) teams to have complete control of their IoT infrastructure and things.  The solution is named VMware Pulse IoT Center.

Customers investing in IoT projects come to us because of challenges as they scale from IoT proof-of-concept to production.  We consistently hear three things – customers need a simpler way to:

  • on-board and manage of thousands to hundreds of thousands of connected devices;
  • make sure those devices are working as they are supposed to; and
  • keep the devices and data secure.

 Existing IoT Platform Gaps

We looked at the market and saw that existing IoT software solutions are cumbersome and require heavy effort and time to deploy and manage. There are often no adapters for generic sensor types and solutions do not work across diverse edge devices/things. In addition, complex integration between IoT platforms and infrastructure results in time consuming data orchestration setup.

Existing solutions also have salient functionality gaps.

  • Device management solutions are not integrated with the ‘thing’ model and scale
  • Many deployed solutions lack a sophisticated and flexible rules engine for granular “thing” control
  • Operational ‘infrastructure’ analytics are not a focus of analytics companies and require extensive custom development
  • Many solutions do not have OTA firmware updates and exhibit cumbersome user-interfaces
  • Many solutions do not have parent/child management and security capabilities
  • Most solutions are meant just for IT (vs. both OT and IT) and built for end user devices

And finally, limited security architecture drives concerns regarding IoT data access and limited scaling from vendor solutions make large deployments challenging.

Ultimately, customers require a host of tools to execute the above functions resulting in solution complexity and overload.

Our core strengths of device and application management, infrastructure analytics, and security give us the IP and expertise to address these issues with an easy to use, single-pane-of-glass solution to help customers to more efficiently manage, operate, scale and protect their IoT projects from the edge to the cloud.

VMware Pulse IoT Key Features

  • Edge Device Management – Support for heterogeneous things and gateways with different hardware, operating systems, and communication protocols
  • Real-Time Infrastructure Analytics – Ability to identify anomalies with real-time monitoring and infrastructure analytics
  • Sophisticated & Flexible Rules Engine- Ability to granularly define what, where and when things are updated
  • Single point console- A single point of monitoring and management for the IoT infrastructure (across private networks comprising of edge systems and connected devices) for both IT and OT users
  • OTA updates – Ability to provide over-the-air, real-time updates to all things/gateways no matter how remote the location
  • Smart Data Orchestration- Delivery of relevant data where and when it is needed across the edge and in the cloud by integrating into enterprise systems
  • Security Across IoT Value Chain- Provides security at thing, network and user level with software updates and NSX and VMware Identity Manager integration
  • Visualize thing – gateway relationships- Provides pictorial representation of the topology of the IoT infrastructure – 2 tier or 3 tier – in a parent child relationship diagram
  • Highly scalable – Supports hundreds of thousands of edge systems and IoT connected devices such as sensors and actuators.
  • On Prem support– Offered as an on-prem solution for deployment flexibility and security. Future versions will also be offered as cloud-hosted.
  • Enterprise Integrations- Quick and easy integration with existing server systems through a comprehensive API abstraction layer

 Solution Components

Pulse IoT Center is comprised of two primary components:

    • A management console (server-side) – The server-side component includes the following set of services:
      • Console UI, including alerts and notifications
      • API for 3rd -party integrations
      • Device management backend, including onboarding, configuration and software lifecycle functions
      • Infrastructure monitoring backend
    • An agent (client-side) that sits on IoT gateways and edge systems- The client-side component includes:
      1. An open-source SDK (Liota) that can be customized to orchestrate telemetry from any IoT gateway, edge system or connected device
      2. An agent that receives packages such as configuration changes and software updates

     

    Just the beginning

    VMware Pulse IoT Center is the first in a family of IoT offerings VMware is developing.  Stay tuned for more information about the VMware Pulse family!