How not to overpay 10 times for temperature monitoring?

Legal requirements and growing payroll costs related to technical supervision of installations cause a strong increase in automatic systems for monitoring temperature, humidity, pressure, presence of gases and dust.

Below we’ve collected answers to the most frequently asked questions from investors about choosing the right monitoring solution.

What type of monitoring system should you choose: wired or wireless?

The wireless solution is supported by:

  • significantly lower installation costs,
  • ease of service,
  • greater reliability associated with fewer mechanical connections and active devices.

Currently, wireless sensors work on batteries for about 5 years, so power supply is not a problem.

There are many wireless monitoring solutions available on the market, what to consider when choosing?

First of all, you should check, if the transmission technique used in the system is based on the standards developed for wireless sensors: Bluetooth LE, Zigbee, Sigfox, LoRa, NB-IoT or LTE Cat M. These techniques allow you to build a modern and future proof installation with expansion options. Currently, many wireless monitoring solutions are based on wireless communication standards not created for sensors and IoT devices. Currently, the most popular technique completely unsuitable in wireless monitoring solution is WiFi.

Very often the investor’s requirement is to store the data on local servers, are there any advantages of such a solution?

Disadvantages are easy to mention, advantages are hard to find. The most important problems associated with choosing such a solution are:

  • high installation price associated with the purchase of servers
  • costly operation related to the supervision of servers and software
  • danger of failure and data loss
  • a problem with the organization of supervision by people outside the facility

And how is the monitoring based on collecting data on the cloud platform?

First of all, cloud based solutions don’t have the disadvantages listed above. In addition, the costs of installing and operating such systems are much lower. The total cost of server based solution may be even 10 times higher than “cloud monitoring”. Cloud-based installations work with virtually no maintenance, while systems based on local servers require full-time care for installations with more than 100 sensors. No possibility of connecting to the “cloud” should practically eliminate the sensor from the market.

Cloud-based systems have become increasingly popular over the past few years. Is there anything else that inhibits their growth?

In recent years, we have observed a very large increase of customers’ interest in the cloud-based system, which translates into a several-fold increase in implementations. Unfortunately, in many cases investors decide to costly expand the existing system instead of implementing a completely new solution. We met with a tender for the modernisation of a large installation based on local servers, settled for $200 000 , while the installation of a new, more reliable cloud based installation would cost around $100 000 and would last much shorter than the modernisation. In many cases, investors decide to stick what they already have: we have previously bought such a system, it is easier to use previously prepared documents, especially since the lack of specialists in supply departments does not allow insight into modern techniques.

Another reason is the “institutional” fear of the cloud. While we keep records of our savings in the bank, e-mail or photos on the cloud, we build unreliable local systems to store temperature data. However, we observe that this is changing rapidly and institutions are trusting the cloud platforms more and more.

What can you recommend from your offer?

We can recommend a solution based on Bluetooth Low Energy. It consists of wireless sensors, gateway and cloud platform. Data from the sensors is transferred to the gateway, and from it directly to the platform in the “cloud” consisting of several servers, for security located throughout Europe. Cloud platform offers many features, including: displaying current and historical measurements on any computer with access to the Internet, generating automatic reports and notifications via emails and SMS. A dedicated mobile application allows you to use all the functions of the “cloud” from anywhere in the World with just a smartphone. Our cloud based solution is used by several hundred clients including, among others, Children’s Hospital in Krakow Prokocim, Children’s Health Center, Pilkington, Jagiellonian University, Military Clinical Hospital in Wrocław, and Żabka stores. What distinguishes us from competitive solutions is a one-time fee for using the platform. The user does not pay any cyclical (subscription) fees for using the platform. A one-time payment enables unlimited use of the cloud.

EFENTO CLOUD – System for monitoring temperature and other physical values – Frequently asked questions