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Pitney Bowes monitors machines using GE’s Predix solution

Even in this digital age, the United States produces roughly 150 million pieces of snail mail each day, and most of it is processed by Pitney Bowes machines. Many of those machines operate 24/7 thanks to sensors and cloud-based software that help Pitney Bowes anticipate problems and monitor production.

Pitney Bowes based its cloud software, called Clarity, on GE’s Predix industrial internet of things platform. The goal of Clarity is to improve the efficiency of machines that stuff envelopes and process mail. The software can schedule jobs and allocate machine resources where they are needed the most.

In addition, Clarity can monitor machine health and diagnose potential problems in real-time. GE said Pitney Bowes can expect to cut part replacement costs by 15% and will see a 10% reduction in time spent on tech support calls and site visits.

GE has positioned Predix as a platform that will work with any vendor’s operating assets any vendor or vintage. The software is designed to capture and analyze machine data and process it in a secure cloud.

GE created Predix for its own business and is now licensing it to other companies as a platform on which to build company-specific solutions. In addition, GE has created discrete software-as-a-service solutions that companies can purchase if they do not want to build their own applications.

According to GE, companies that connect their machines to the internet will need to use servers at the edge of the network as well as in the Predix cloud. Decisions that need to be made in real-time often cannot be supported by cloud-based computers.

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