Outcomex is expanding the potential of the Internet of Things (IoT) in Australia and beyond following the debut launch of 365mesh, a custom built platform designed to convert market hype into mainstream reality.
The solution -- shaped by more than five years of industry experience -- operates as a multi-tenant IoT platform created to scale globally, ingesting data from multiple sources such as cameras, sensors and vehicles.
Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities, data is processed via an analytics engine to provide enhanced levels of accuracy when delivering customer insights.
ARN can reveal that the Sydney-based provider will focus predominantly on rolling out 365mesh -- which can be deployed by Outcomex or white-labelled through industry partners -- to the Australian market until mid-2022, before launching globally with target regions spanning New Zealand, Europe, North America and Africa.
The platform will function separately to Outcomex’s systems and white-labelled customer deployments to ensure "strict processes" are in place to protect IoT environments with in-country alliances and marketplaces central to expansion plans.
According to Marco Delgado -- founder and CEO of Outcomex -- the launch highlights that IoT is moving beyond niche status at an end-user level, evident by a rise in deployments and projects Australia-wide.
“Based on the discussions we have with our customers, IoT is already mainstream across some industries,” Delgado observed. “What they don’t always know however is that almost all businesses and industry segments can already attain cost and operational efficiencies using IoT solutions.
“A way most of our customers begin their IoT journey is through the deployment of a pilot project, which eventually becomes permanent and then gets expanded across other areas of their organisation.”
Delgado said such an approach allows the business to “collaborate, customise and refine” solutions in parallel to increase alignment with corporate objectives.
“IoT is equally suited across all industries and sizes,” he added. “Smaller companies are often worried about the initial set-up cost but I think it’s a misperception because as the years have gone by, IoT has become more and more affordable.
“With connectivity technology like LoRaWAN, it can be even more advantageous in areas where connectivity has always been an issue, for example, mining, oil and gas, agriculture, utilities, airports, rail, and transport industries.”
New approach to IoT
According to EDGE Research -- commissioned by ARN in partnership with Tech Research Asia -- customers across Australia are resetting outsourcing requirements with a specific focus on business understanding, innovation, agility and flexibility.
Within the context of IoT, this focus extends to the creation of targeted solutions housing deep levels of domain expertise, supported by “future-focused” proof of concepts and accelerated time to return on investment (ROI).
“We have invested heavily in the IoT space with multiple offerings expanding into new industries during the past three years,” Delgado said. “The outcome of this investment and innovation has seen our IoT business report a 300 per cent increase year-on-year with expectations of similar growth during the next 24 months.”
As outlined by EDGE Research, “depth over breadth” is now the order of the day for an ecosystem tasked with creating unique intellectual property (IP) at speed and scale.
Central to such efforts will be a skilled team housing technical expertise in tailored solution areas, prompting 75 per cent of partners to pursue more certifications during the first six months of 2021.
“We have grown our IoT team from five to 25 in approximately 18 months, hiring additional staff to deploy our IoT projects on site with software engineers and electronic engineers specialising in electronic product design,” Delgado added. “The addition of electronic engineers to our IoT department has kick-started the development of sensors designed and engineered in-house.
“After months of testing and several prototypes, we are now implementing our sensors within a pilot project and we are well positioned to start offering our products to the wider market in 2022.”
Shaped by an “industry-specific” philosophy, 365mesh enters the market with customer recognition across agriculture, smart cities and transportation sectors.
Notably, solutions already available include IoT essentials which covers people and vehicle counting, environment monitoring and waste management. Delving deeper, solutions are also in place for unique use cases such as agriculture management and monitoring spanning cold rooms, water and BBQs.
“All data collected is owned by the customer and that data never leaves Australian shores while undergoing analysis using the 365mesh AI-powered analytics engine,” Delgado said. “This information is made available with real-time as well as historical views for use by clients.”
Speaking as technical lead for IoT at Outcomex, Luca Palermo noted that despite the official launch of the product, the 365mesh platform will “continue to evolve” in response to new technologies and changing market dynamics.
“365mesh is a protocol independent platform, meaning any data source -- cameras, sensors, vehicles -- can be ingested into our AI and machine learning analytics engine and produce meaningful insights,” Palermo explained. “It constantly ‘learns’ by the data collected and it becomes more accurate over time.”
Award-winning IoT expertise
As outlined by EDGE Research, 82 per cent of partners understand the key trends taking shape across the Australian market while 77 per cent consider the business “well set-up” to meet the future needs of customers.
Yet only 40 per cent of providers have developed a new strategic plan as a result of COVID-19 with a mere 36 per cent undergoing a “significant change” in go-to-market approach.
In the case of 365mesh, Delgado said the platform was created in response to ongoing challenges facing Australian and global companies in relation to IoT adoption, notably the lack of an end-to-end solution during the initial stages of deployment.
“Some vendors only offer one or two components of an IoT capability and while companies can get started without a complete IoT solution, they soon encounter scalability challenges,” Delgado explained.
In response, Outcomex -- recognised for IoT excellence during the ARN Innovation Awards in 2020 -- provides “end-to-end” IoT solutions spanning sensors and devices, alongside networking and connectivity offerings plus data processing and user application features -- underpinned by professional services and technical engineering support.
“365mesh is applicable across industries and provides multi-tenant white label opportunities for customers and industry partners,” Delgado said. “It supports multiple technologies and can connect almost anything from anywhere, with global coverage capabilities."
Built entirely by Outcomex, the platform houses the ability to host workloads within the provider’s own data centres to improve cost efficiencies, in addition to supporting multi-vendor hardware and integrating with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft and Google Cloud among others.
“With Cisco being such a big part of our business, it’s only natural that we collaborate to offer the best IoT solutions to our customers together too,” Delgado added. “We have been very successful working with them and Meraki on different projects notably around smart cities and transport.”
As reported by ARN, Outcomex was recently claimed Cisco Partner Innovation Challenge honours at both Asia Pacific and global levels, winning a total of US$250,000 in the process.
Both awards were in recognition of TransportDeck, an IoT solution which provides the transport and mobility sector with the ability to "monitor, count and gather" information around public transport areas such as pick-up and drop off bays, taxi and bus ranks and pedestrian traffic spaces.
Through the utilisation of Cisco APIs and industrial hardware -- as well as Meraki cameras and advanced object recognition capabilities through AI and ML algorithms -- TransportDeck aims to offer real-time visibility and analytics so customers can make informed business decisions in relation to improving area accessibility and management of people and traffic flow.
This also builds on achieving local and global honours in 2020, with the business leveraging the US$250,000 prize money 12 months ago to further accelerate IoT innovation and “bring 365mesh to life”.
“We have also recently achieved our Cisco IoT Specialisation, reflecting the importance we put in working hand-in-hand with Cisco and Meraki to deliver the best IoT solutions to our customers,” Delgado added. “We’re continuing to build unique IP and are currently in the process of submitting our first patent for an algorithm working in conjunction with Meraki cameras.”