Embedded Internet Conference 2000
One of the more exciting opportunities for e-Services is the ability to implement alternative billing models.
Many manufacturers have very costly equipment, which limits their use to only those places that can afford
to purchase and maintain the equipment. E-Services through Internet enabled devices would allow for
consumable billing, device usage billing, and enable web portal publishing of analyzed data to customers or
other third parties.
eServices can also be instrumental in providing manufacturers marketing and engineering departments with
extremely valuable information based on real-time or logged field data. This could have the affect of
increasing product life cycles, enabling more efficient beta testing, and determining how customers really
use the products. eService enables the collection of valuable embedded data to travel from the embedded
devices to the boardroom. All of this enabled using the Internet as the communications infrastructure.
A closer look at the topology shows the Internet as the communications backbone. This is illustrated in
Figure 2. Embedded data is published over the Internet and can be consumed by a variety of different
systems and devices. This diagram demonstrates some of the potential interconnections that are possible.
The embedded devices communicate through the intranet or the Internet to Operator Interface panels,
Human Machine Interface (HMI) as well as Manufacturing Enterprise Systems and Enterprise
Requirements Planning software. The information can be access through wireless web enabled devices
such as PDAs, all through a standard web browser.
eServices will enable companies to develop new and exciting e-Business models. They can enhance
customer support, engineering, product service and maintenance and open up new revenue opportunities.
E-services will also enable a new breed of Internet company. Those that provide infrastructure support, web
portals, service and support capabilities, the opportunities are almost endless. Finally, eService is an ideal
way to bring the not coms into the internet age by enabling low cost connectivity to devices which can be
accessed via the web.
Figure 2 - eService Topology