TALKING APPLES! THE CONVERSATION WITH THINGS

PictographAargh!! Am being attacked by worms from the inside… Whoa!! Quite hot in here, not sure I will last another day… Hmmm… Am sitting here inside a ball of wax and rotting!!!!
That was an Apple moaning its fate in a store. Yup, wouldn’t it be a delight to be able to listen to an Apple talk? There wouldn’t be an apple languishing anywhere anymore if that were to happen. Apples would be cared for, attended to and lovingly handled till it came under the knife and sacrificed for owners delight. The story of its life. The day isn’t far away or it is already here. Produce are already finding their voices through the Internet of Fruits and Vegetables. Talking Things! Talking Produce! Talking Apples coming soon to a store near you.

PictographNow what comes to mind when talking about the Internet of Fruits and Vegetables? Talking Fruits definitely creeps you out and one can imagine freaked out customers whacking at jabbering apples and tomatoes in frenzy with umbrellas and what have you. No! The literal version of Talking Fruits isn’t what we are envisaging. We are talking about smart sensing and intelligent edge analytics that give a “voice” to these delicious Fruits in times of distress. A voice in times of need when a little attention can be the difference between a good fruit and a wasted fruit. That small piece of information about temperature out of bounds or ethylene in abundance could save a basketful or postpone the start of rotting.

Smart sensing involves understanding the best temperature and humidity needs of fruits right from the time of plucking the fruits and vegetables. A Pear and an Apple have nothing in common except for being delicious fruits. PictographA pear has to be stored at a different temperature than an Apple and has a different lifespan. These little nuggets of information are part of the micro-analytics inside these smart sensors.

Retail statistics show that >60% of losses are contributed to by perishables. That is a severe negative considering the fact that it takes a very small sensing and monitoring mechanism to save a large portion of this 60%.
It is also common knowledge that the knowledge about these common fruits is minimal or nothing or mostly ignored amongst small retailers and inconsequential amongst large retailers. The key to preventing wastage is to ensure minimal shelf life. Faster the fruit flies off the shelves, the better for waste statistics.

PictographWith the advent of personalization and its marriage to smart sensing and indoor localization, it is now possible to actually hear the Apple talk. Here is how!
Smart sensors detect the increase in temperature above threshold of the Apple display rack, crank out an analysis of the potential impact and raise an alarm to the operations crew for intervention. Hours go by and no sign of Mr. Fixit. Smart sensors crank out another set of analysis and determine that any further delay would spoil the apples. SOS information is relayed to the store cloud analytics platform, which in turn is monitored by the smart store personalization engine (Hint: Look for the Bosch Bezirk Personalization Engine). The engine searches for potential shoppers with apples in their upcoming shopping list. Bingo! Found a few in the store but not wanting apples today. Personalized offers for Apples running at attractive discounts are pushed to these shoppers and on acknowledgment from them added to the shopping list. Information is pushed to the billing counter to discount the Apple prices for these shoppers. Sold!!

PictographWhat just happened??! Apples talked themselves out of potential trouble and saved themselves from being taken to the trash. Great Escape!!!Talking Apples save lives (of apples) and save money of retailers.
What I just talked about are two sides to the Apple. Did you know an Apple has two sides? Anyway.
There is a cost side and a revenue side. The cost side is about the money spent to keep the Apple in comfort and from going bad. The revenue side is in, of course, selling it at the right time at the right profitable price or in distress to recover as much costs without impacting customer delight.
Managed Apples required Managed Assets to deliver both sides of the retail story. And information is crucial to ensure the right environment for the right produce.
Where do Apples chat? On WhatsApple!! Sweet!!Do you ever wonder what it would be like to hear a Coffee Machine talk? Well! That’s another story. Watch this IoT space.

Published in Mr. Uday Prabhu’s LinkedIn profile

About the author

Uday Haleangadi Prabhu

Uday Haleangadi Prabhu

General manager, Internet of Things and Product Management, Robert Bosch Engineering and Business Solutions Ltd.
He has been associates with Bosch for over six year now. Within the company he was previously the head of the department for the Electronics Division.

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