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3M Gains Real-Time Insight with Cloud Solution - Microsoft Azure Industrial IoT Case Study
3M Gains Real-Time Insight with Cloud Solution
The company has a long track record of innovative technology solutions. For example, 3M helps its customers optimize parking operations by automating fee collection and other processes. To improve support for this rapidly expanding segment, 3M needed to automate its own data collection and reporting. The company had recently purchased the assets of parking, tolling, and automatic license plate reader businesses, and required better insight into these acquisitions. Chad Reed, Global Business Manager for 3M Parking Systems, says, “With thousands of installations across the world, we couldn’t keep track of our software and hardware deployments, which made it difficult to understand our market penetration.” 3M wanted a tracking application that sales staff could use to get real-time information about the type and location of 3M products in parking lots and garages. So that it could be used on-site with potential customers, the solution would have to provide access to data anytime, anywhere, and from an array of mobile devices. Jason Fox, Mobile Application Architect at 3M, upped the ante by volunteering to deliver the new app in one weekend. For Fox and his team, these requirements meant turning to the cloud instead of an on-premises datacenter. “My first thought was to go directly to the cloud because we needed to provide access not only to our salespeople, but to resellers who didn’t have access to our internal network,” says Fox. “The cloud just seemed like a logical choice.”
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