May 28, 2019 11:00 pm

New Windows IoT solutions at Computex show ingenuity at the intelligent edge

By / Vice President, IoT Device Experiences

Windows has been running on embedded devices for more than two decades, well before the industry focused on the Internet of Things. Today, Windows IoT helps device builders of all sizes create IoT solutions that bring digital transformation to life for customers with fast, safe, smart IoT devices:

  • Windows 10 IoT Core enables manufacturers to get to market quickly with small-footprint devices that are secure, lower cost and built for the intelligent edge. Windows 10 IoT Core provides a royalty-free OS for prototyping, developing and testing IoT devices.
  • Windows 10 IoT Core Services ensures long-term OS support and services for managing device updates and device health. Benefits include reduced operating costs with over-the-air updates that device manufacturers control for OS, apps and drivers—plus 10 years of OS security updates.
  • Windows 10 IoT Enterprise is a locked down version of Windows 10 Enterprise that delivers enterprise manageability and security to a broad range of solutions across multiple industries. It shares all the benefits of the worldwide Windows ecosystem, including the same familiar application compatibility, development and management tools as client PCs and laptops.
  • Windows Server IoT 2019 can securely handle the largest edge-computing workloads. Announced just this past February, Windows Server IoT 2019 brings the power of high-availability and high-performance storage and networking to the edge, addressing latency and connectivity requirements and enabling customers to maintain data on premises while securely storing and analyzing large amounts of data.

 More Windows IoT advances just ahead

In the past year, we’ve launched more than 30 new services and features for our Windows IoT platform. Several of those arrived just last month at Build, including the general availability of the Robot Operating System—a mature, open-source robotics framework used worldwide for commercial and research applications—on Windows 10 IoT Enterprise.

At Computex, we’re excited to continue this momentum as Microsoft and NXP advance their efforts to bring the full range of NXP systems-on-a-chip to Windows IoT. The newest update: The board support package (BSP) for the i.MX6 SoloX applications processors will be generally available in June 2019. Additional BSPs for members of the i.MX6 series are expected to become available later this summer, with BSPs for the i.MX7 and i.MX8 series released later this year.

 Windows IoT: the foundation for your intelligent edge

Last year at Computex we announced Windows IoT Core Services to help device builders simplify the process of building, supporting and maintaining their intelligent edge devices.

Today, I’m happy to report that Windows IoT is on a roll: Over the past 12 months, we have seen more than 4,100 design wins for intelligent edge devices, across industries such as manufacturing, retail, smart cities, healthcare and others. Windows IoT has been broadly adopted as the foundation for solutions that improve safety and security, predict and prevent equipment failures, optimize smart buildings for space utilization and energy management, and improve patient outcomes.

Our device builder partners are embracing Windows IoT to help them deliver intelligent edge devices that are not only simpler and quicker to build, but that can provide better business results. As Computex 2019 gets underway this week, we’re celebrating this expanding Windows IoT ecosystem and highlighting some notable customer success stories. Check out some of these examples across industries:

GETAC improves manufacturing accuracy

Built on machine learning and artificial intelligence, the GETAC AI defect inspection solution is used for detecting manufacturing quality issues on assembly lines. This smart system performs detailed quality checks and gives manufacturing technologies new abilities to recognize images, distinguish trends and make intelligent predictions and decisions. The advanced industrial cameras in the solution capture multiple axes of images; components that have defects can be identified immediately through Azure IoT Hub and Azure SQL Server. The six-axis robot then picks up the defective components for further assessment. This improves the efficiency of the human inspectors in the validation process and also the quality of the overall manufacturing process. The hardware platform, which runs on Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, connects and controls all elements, including robots, sensors and stepping motors.

“Microsoft is a leader in the embedded space as they have been a part of our industry for many years. We selected Windows 10 IoT Enterprise to build our GETAC AI Defect Inspection Solutions because it reduced our development time and worked seamlessly with other Microsoft solutions, which made it easier to get our product to the market. We trust the Microsoft brand to help us build secure devices, and can count on Microsoft for continued support.” — Eddie Wu, president of AIoT Business Unit, GETAC.

IDEX keeps fire trucks running smoothly

Every day, firefighters across the US answer an average of 90,000 emergency calls, and thousands of lives rely on a department’s ability to effectively respond. Reducing unwanted downtime for fire trucks is a top priority for fire departments and city officials.

Fire truck control panel

IDEX uses Windows 10 IoT Core and Azure IoT to make fire vehicles smarter by connecting numerous systems and components of a fire truck, including the control panel pictured above, to provide technicians and maintenance crews with real-time insights into the vehicle’s health.

Using Windows 10 IoT Core and Azure IoT, the Captium solution from IDEX Fire & Safety is designed to make fire vehicles smarter by connecting the numerous systems and components of a fire truck to provide technicians and maintenance crews with real-time insights into a vehicle’s health.

Beyond fuel levels and temperatures, the system monitors mechanical and electrical systems such as water flow rates that make up the truck’s firefighting and emergency capabilities. It can track preventive maintenance schedules, identify mechanical issues before they become larger problems, and detect trends associated with repairs, helping technicians and maintenance crews increase vehicle reliability, shorten repair times and keep trucks in service.

“Windows 10 IoT Core enabled us to leverage our existing skills and provided the security and trust we need to develop a demanding application that helps ensure first responders’ equipment is always operationally ready. Windows 10 IoT Core, combined with Azure, provided IDEX with the end-to-end platform to build our solution.” — Jeffrey Zook, marketing manager, IDEX Fire and Safety

NexCOBOT offers a next-generation checkout solution for retail

NexCOBOT has built a smart retail solution that helps brick-and-mortar store owners increase customer satisfaction. The company’s smart self-checkout solution supports accurate customer recognition for stores that offer memberships, along with easier object detection and real-time customer data management. Built on Windows 10 IoT Enterprise and a host of Azure services, this solution makes the checkout process intelligent, seamless and secure.

“We chose Windows 10 IoT Enterprise because of its stability and 10 years of long-term support for industrial applications and embedded PCs. It’s enterprise-grade ready and has world-class developer tools, which allow us to create a solution quickly and securely, and extremely shorten our development time and free our software engineers to focus on creating core competitive advantage.” — Jenny Shern, general manager, NexCOBOT Taiwan Co., Ltd.

Logic Supply expands its portfolio of ruggedized devices

Logic Supply designs and manufactures industrial PCs engineered for reliability and robustness to deal with the harshest environmental conditions. The company’s devices are used for demanding IoT scenarios requiring high-performance computing at the edge, including machine learning and computer vision. Logic Supply is in the process of expanding its offerings and moving from smaller devices into server-class hardware to meet the needs of customers.

Logic Supply systems run Windows 10 IoT Core and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, and are Azure IoT Edge certified. The company is committed to using Windows Server IoT 2019 and is currently working with a partner to commercialize a market-ready video analytics platform for robust and secure video security and surveillance systems running at the edge.

“We chose to work with Windows IoT products and services due to the long-term support, and the strength of the Microsoft brand. Equally important, Microsoft provides a trusted foundation for us to get our intelligent edge devices to market fast. We are excited to expand our Microsoft commitment by developing high-volume solutions that take advantage of the incredible storage and robust security offered by Windows Server IoT 2019.” — Murat Erdogan, vice president for products, Logic Supply

If you’re at Computex this week, be sure to visit Microsoft booth #L0110-4F to experience these Windows IoT solutions firsthand. And to learn more about how Microsoft is making substantial investments in cloud connectivity and using the power of Windows to accelerate our customers’ journeys to the cloud and the intelligent edge, check in with our Azure Internet of Things blog.