Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) announced a collaboration between its business services Internet of Things (IoT) service, MachineQ, and Universal Parks and Resorts, to use low power wide area networking (LPWAN) technology for IoT projects at the Universal Orlando Resort. The deployment is using MachineQ's integrated hardware and software platform to help Universal's operations and IT teams test and launch IoT projects designed to increase operational efficiency in the park.
"We've identified multiple applications where MachineQ's low-power IoT platform can deliver data to us faster than previous methods, and we're seeing the positive impact that can have for our teams," said Bill McCorey, senior vice president, chief information officer, Universal Parks and Resorts. "We've conducted a number of pilots for different use cases and have plans to put several of them into production in Orlando. As our teams continue to take advantage of the MachineQ platform, we anticipate more adoption from our internal teams, and even greater efficiencies as a result."
MachineQ platform IoT hardware and software tools will be accessible across the entire Universal Orlando Resort. With the network in place, wireless sensors that can detect temperature, location, energy consumption, and other data, can be affixed to park assets that operations teams want to monitor or control, such as food refrigeration units, fleet vehicles, and utility meters.
Once activity is recorded by a sensor, it relays that data wirelessly to a MachineQ gateway, and then it can be delivered over the Internet to a digital dashboard used by park operations and IT staff. The information could be used to optimize maintenance schedules, identify anomalies in the consumption of utilities, or understand usage patterns of fleet vehicles.
"While we offer a growing number of pre-defined IoT solutions, we are excited to see businesses, such as Universal Parks and Resorts, leverage our platform and APIs to rapidly build and customize solutions unique to them," said Alex Khorram, general manager of MachineQ. "Universal's adoption of IoT to enhance the guest experience and drive operational efficiencies is similar to what we've seen in other industries where digital transformation is happening - such as agriculture, multi-dwelling housing, manufacturing or food service. Once the platform is deployed, and organizations learn more about the technology and the ability to add new connected use cases with relative ease, the positive impact on the business becomes very real."
The engineering team at Universal is leveraging MachineQ's public APIs to build an application that connects storage lockers at the Volcano Bay water theme park. In addition, Universal is piloting a solution to use IoT sensors to improve management of its food and beverage inventory at the Orlando resort using more data. Future use cases for leveraging the platform could include smart outdoor lighting, tracking mobile assets like golf carts, and water leak detection.
MachineQ's B2B IoT platform is deployed using LoRa network technology. LoRa-based networks are similar to cellular or Bluetooth, but require less power and have the ability to send data over wider geographic areas and into hard to reach locations like deep indoors or underground. Universal will be able to cover its entire complex with 15 MachineQ wireless gateways.