Companies have been tapping into cloud technology for years now to reduce data storage costs and manage vast quantities of data generated by the Internet. However, GE found that the existing cloud systems did not effectively address the unique requirements of industrial organizations, so GE invested in creating Predix. This platform-as-a-service (PaaS) enables industrial companies to capitalize on the cloud's potential in a way that was never before possible.
Predix goes beyond the traditional cloud storage, networking, and computational abilities to take advantage of the huge quantities of data to be obtained by the increase in connection over the next five years. Analysts estimate that more than 50 billion assets will be connected to the Internet by 2020. Predix will have the capability to capture and analyze the volume, velocity, and variety to effectively transformative the industry.
As Jeff Immelt, CEO and chairman of GE, observes, “Cloud computing has enabled incredible innovation across the consumer world. With Predix Cloud, GE is providing a new level of service and results across the industrial world.”
In contrast to platforms that have to rely on outside vendors to supply specific operational capabilities, GE Predix's secure and comprehensive environment ensures consistency of service, performance, compliance, and security even for global deployment. The “service delivery” model also means customers can scale up and down in a rapid and cost effective manner as their requirements change.
Predix is different from any cloud services currently available to businesses, as it has been purpose built to capitalize on the opportunities to be found in the Industrial Internet. To that end it includes the following features:
- Asset Connectivity: Predix Cloud provides advanced connectivity-as-a-service for the billions of connected industrial assets that analysts predict for the near future. That will be achieved by combining proprietary technologies with global telecommunications partners to enable rapid provisioning of sensors, gateways, and software-defined machines.
- Scalability for Machine Data: Machines produce different types of data, which consumer cloud services are not built to handle. Predix Cloud was created to store, analyze, and manage machine data in real time. From capturing and analyzing time series data from a locomotive with thousands of sensors to delivering large object data like a 3D MRI image to a doctor for diagnosis, Predix Cloud is built for the variety, volume, and velocity of industrial data.
- Security + Compliance: Incorporating decades of experience in operational security and information security, Predix Cloud is designed with the most advanced security protocols available, including customized, adaptive security solutions.
- Governance: Leveraging GE's global network and deep expertise across more than 60 regulatory areas, Predix Cloud is designed to streamline governance and drive down compliance costs while respecting national data sovereignty regulations globally. Consequently even highly regulated industries such as aviation, energy, healthcare, and transportation, can build and deploy services.
- Interoperability: Predix Cloud will operate seamlessly with applications and services running in a broad spectrum of cloud environments, allowing businesses to capitalize on its optimized security and data structure offerings while maintaining legacy solutions.
- Gated Community: Unlike public cloud services, which are open to any individual or organization, Predix Cloud is based on a “gated community” model restricting access to members of the industrial ecosystem.
- Developer Insight: Developers will have visibility into their operating environments and all connected to it. That gives businesses the ability to deploy and monitor machine apps anywhere and to adjust to changing demands in the physical and digital world without any loss of security or visibility.
- On-Demand Availability: Businesses will be able to easily access and scale with the Predix Cloud through a convenient on-demand, pay-as-you-go pricing model.
The gain in efficiency and productivity engendered by the Industrial Internet is predicted to save hundreds of billions of dollars each year. But only if they have the means to tap into it effectively. That's what GE Predix allows companies to do. It's a platform that GE was able to develop due to its unique combination of information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) expertise and deep industrial domain knowledge.
Businesses will have access to GE Predix beginning in 2016.