Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) Software Meets IoT

History looks like it may repeat itself. More than a decade ago, numerous RMM (remote monitoring and management) software platforms emerged from Canada, helping IT experts to remotely maintain PCs and servers. Fast forward to the present, and a Canadian startup could connect the dots between RMM and the Internet of Things.

Admittedly, RMM is a niche of sorts -- a solid market both for enterprise customers and the IT experts who support them. The two big challenges:

  1. As workloads shifted from on-premises servers and PCs to cloud systems, RMM has had to evolve too -- especially as cloud monitoring startups rapidly moved into the market.
  2. At the same time, RMM software companies need to push beyond a device mindset (PCs, tablets, smartphones, servers) to embrace a "sensor" mindset.

Indeed, hardware and software sensors are now everywhere. Sensors track products as they move through supply chains. Sensors -- in the form of beacon networks -- track you as you move about malls and retail stores. Sensors gather data from machines on farms, in factories, across oceans, and plenty more. Sensors therefore are a key building block for the Internet of Things (IoT).

The New RMM Need

In a sensor-driven world, IT experts, data scientists and business analysts need new ways to monitor, manage and optimize sensor-driven endpoints. Even better: Businesses want to gather and monetize data from all those sensor networks.

Some existing RMM platforms will evolve to meet the sensor need. Still, I suspect most of the software companies in the market remain overly focused on traditional on-premises and cloud workloads. To fill the sensor gap, a new generation of RMM software may enter the picture.

Who Does That (Today)?

A prime example involves SensorSuite -- A Toronto-based startup that blends remote monitoring, data collection and the Internet of Things. The company just received funding, though the sum was not disclosed.

SensorSuite's platform has three components:

  1. First, you establish wireless sensors on the "things" you want to monitor and control -- such as your mobile fleet of trucks, building gas meters, water meters and more.
  2. Second, a hardware gateway captures, processes and visualizes that sensor data.
  3. Third, a cloud dashboard gives you insights and alerts from all that sensor information.

So what's next? Some sort of deeper analytics story -- allowing you to better monetize all of those "things" in your sensor grid -- spanning multiple buildings or mobile entities (cars, trucks, ships, etc.). But that's a blog entry for another time...

Fact or Fiction?

PS: There's no guarantee SensorSuite will succeed. And I might be underestimating the established RMM platforms in the market -- especially since I haven't really interviewed anyone in that market in more than a year...

PS Part II: I seem to recall that Level Platforms actually got its start as a building management platform, before evolving toward an IT management platform that AVG Technologies later acquired. Though my memory on the topic is a bit fuzzy...

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