iot vs iiot vs industry 4.0 erqos article cover image

What is IoT, IIoT and Industry 4.0 in Automation

What is IoT (Internet of Things)?

Initially, people connected desktops, laptops, and phones to the internet to communicate and search for information. The Internet of Things (IoT) extends this connectivity. It allows users to monitor and control devices via the internet. It also enables these devices to communicate with each other. IoT encompasses everyday objects like household items and wearable tech. It also includes more complex systems like smart hot tubs, pools, solar farms, and irrigation systems, all designed to improve efficiency and convenience.

What is iot?
Internet access before and after internet of things (iot).
Initially, machines connected to the internet only to allow people to communicate and search for information. IoT now enables devices to connect online to communicate with each other, access information, and be remotely controlled and monitored by users.
Internet access before and after IoT

IoT relies on communication protocols like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to ensure seamless connectivity. As IoT technology evolves, it enhances real-time monitoring, automation, and intelligent decision-making, making our environments smarter and more responsive. IoT controllers and smart systems play a crucial role in this ecosystem, driving the automation of various tasks and improving overall system efficiency.

IIoT vs Industry 4.0

IIoT is usually used interchangeably with Industry 4.0. The truth is, IIoT is a subset of IoT focusing specifically on industrial applications. Industry 4.0 refers to the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It encompasses the broader transformation of manufacturing and industrial processes through advanced technologies. Understanding the distinction between these two concepts is crucial for leveraging the full potential of IoT automation. It is also essential for implementing effective automation strategies in industrial settings.

What is iot, iiot and the relationship with industry 4.0.
Venn diagram describing the relationship between internet of things (iot), industrial internet of things (iiot) and the fourth industrial revolution (industry 4.0).
IIoT where IoT and Industry 4.0 overlap

What is IIoT (Industrial IoT)?

IIoT connects sensors, instruments, and devices to collect and analyze data, enhancing efficiency and productivity in industrial settings. For example, IIoT enables real-time monitoring of machinery, predictive maintenance, and optimized production schedules. By integrating robust and reliable industrial IoT controllers, IIoT systems withstand harsh industrial environments and provide precise control and data analytics. Advanced IoT controllers like the EQSP32 – ESP32 PLC, play a critical role in managing and automating industrial and urban processes.

Industry 4.0 – The Fourth Industrial Revolution

Industry 4.0 builds on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) by integrating cyber-physical systems, smart manufacturing, and advanced data analytics to create interconnected, intelligent production environments. Focused on principles such as interoperability, information transparency, technical assistance, and decentralized decision-making, Industry 4.0 enables smart factories where systems autonomously monitor processes and make decisions, enhancing efficiency and adaptability.

Industry 4.0 extends beyond the IIoT concept by incorporating several other crucial technologies that influence process optimization through the internet. These include Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) for advanced data analysis and decision-making, Big Data for managing large datasets, and Cloud Computing for scalable storage and processing power. These technologies collectively create a more efficient, flexible, and responsive industrial environment, driving innovation and competitiveness in the global market.

Getting started with IoT and IIoT system development

Creating IoT and IIoT automation systems can be both exciting and challenging. The challenges usually start with reliably interfacing with the physical world through sensors and actuators. They become more complex when trying to connect everything and make it accessible over the internet. EQSP32 is an ESP32 PLC designed especially for IoT automations. It provides the necessary software (API) to interface with the real world and automatically handle online connectivity. Unlike simple IoT sensors and devices, the EQSP32 is a powerful controller that can manage the entire IoT system. It offers numerous features that facilitate easy integration and efficient operation.

Key features of EQSP32 for IoT and IIoT automation

  1. Predefined Modes of Pin Operation:
    • Digital Input (DIN), Analog Input (AIN), Power PWM Output (POUT), and Relay (RELAY). Supports versatile input and output configurations, including special modes for switches (SWT) with debouncing, temperature sensors (TIN), and relative analog inputs (RAIN).
  2. Industrial Communication Protocols:
    • RS232, RS485, and CAN-Bus. Ensures robust and reliable communication for industrial applications.
  3. Cloud Integration:
    • Using Google’s Firebase. Utilizes a cloud platform and developer’s template for easy no-code, drag-and-drop mobile application development.
  4. Home Assistant Integration:
    • Automatic Discovery and Communication. Allows seamless integration with your local Home Assistant server over MQTT, providing flexibility and extended interconnectivity with third-party integrations like Alexa or existing Home Assistant solutions.
  5. Compact DIN Rail Mount Design:
    • Space-Saving Design. Fits in any standard electrical panel, making it ideal for industrial and residential applications.
  6. User-Friendly API and Documentation:
    • Comprehensive Resources. Comes with a comprehensive API and detailed documentation, along with EQ-AI, a pretrained ChatGPT model on all EQSP32’s features and API functionality, ensuring smooth and effortless development.

If you are new to IoT and IIoT system design or just new to the EQSP32, we recommend exploring our tutorials and application examples, which offer step-by-step guidance on using the EQSP32 to its full potential. These resources will help you get started quickly and ensure that you can effectively leverage all the capabilities of this powerful controller.

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