The need to export untapped building automation systems (BAS) data into enterprise information technology (IT) drives the development of the oBIX standard. Such business intelligence can help companies enhance operational efficiency, improve energy management and understand resource utilization information.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (technicalinsights.frost.com), Open Building Information Exchange - A Technology Insight, finds there is a growing trend among information officers across industries to harness the vast amounts of data generated by BAS. When converted to a format that integrates into enterprise IT, this historic and real-time data offers a treasury of knowledge ready for analysis.
"A building or facility offers a wealth of information, which, when presented in a suitable manner, can yield great knowledge," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Zachariah Thomas. "Businesses have deployed enterprise resource planning software to improve their efficiencies and are using XML (Extensible Markup Language) as a common data format to improve inter-system communications. This is the basic need for an XML-based standard that can transform data previously unavailable to the business information systems into useful information which can improve all-around efficiency."
Businesses and other commercial entities view their buildings and facilities as mere assets which serve a certain functional role, namely housing people and equipment. oBIX sets out to change this perception by providing a framework by which the company can get more value out of its facilities. The value addition can come in different ways, like energy management and associated cost cuts, proactive building maintenance and reduction in downtime. These gains can, in the long term, translate into cost savings visible on the balance sheet.
As with any standard in the preliminary stages, oBIX currently attracts few proponents. Initial skepticism and change resistance are common problems associated with any new standard. This, coupled with market confusion over competitive offerings, makes the acceptance of oBIX very challenging.
"The biggest challenge facing the adoption of the oBIX and related initiatives within the building automation industry is the lack of awareness about potential benefits and gains businesses and consumers alike stand to reap," says Thomas. "Consumers and building operators/owners do not know that they can ask for services that can be made possible with a standard such as oBIX. There is a general acceptance that you only get what is on offer and not what you demand."
Overall, oBIX is a laudable attempt at creating a truly open specification, which the BAS and IT industry can use to interface. The standard is a work in progress and more must be done regarding specifications and market visibility.
Open Building Information Exchange - A Technology Insight, a part of the Technical Insights program, provides a technology overview and outlook for web services for building automation systems. The study provides an assessment of the oBIX specification with discussions on application areas and also provides an analysis of the various opportunities this specification provides for stakeholders in the building automation domain. Furthermore, this research service includes detailed technology analysis and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants. Interviews with the press are available.
If you are interested in an analysis, which provides manufacturers, end users, and other industry participants with an overview, summary, challenges, and latest coverage of oBIX, send an email to Johanna Haynes, Corporate Communications, at jhaynes_pr[.]frost.com with your full name, company name, title, telephone number, company email address, company website, city, state and country. Upon receipt of the above information, an overview will be sent to you by email.
Technical Insights is an international technology analysis business that produces a variety of technical news alerts, newsletters and research services.
Frost & Sullivan, the Global Growth Consulting Company, partners with clients to accelerate their growth. The company's Growth Partnership Services, Growth Consulting, and Career Best Practices empower clients to create a growth-focused culture that generates, evaluates, and implements effective growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan employs over 45 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses, and the investment community from more than 30 offices on six continents.
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