No one likes to get stuck in an elevator. Otis ONE, a connected solution from Otis Elevator, aims to help ensure that doesn\u2019t happen by making the Farmington, Conn.-based company\u2019s elevators smarter.\n\nThe solution, which incorporates IoT sensors, big data, AI, and a cloud-native application, is available for existing Otis elevators and is embedded in Otis\u2019 Gen3 and Gen360 \u00a0elevators, delivering customers and technicians real-time visibility of an elevator\u2019s health, as well as data insights for predictive maintenance and options for remote troubleshooting, all of which have contributed to a drop in downtime and a reduction in service requests and technician vists, the company reports.\n\n\u201cThe last thing [our customers] want is an elevator out of service,\u201d says Rina Leonard, vice president and CIO at Otis. \u201cWe can see if an elevator is indicating health issues and proactively schedule maintenance. It\u2019s uninterrupted service that the customer is seeking.\u201d\n\nDesigned with controllers, sensors, gateways, real-time dashboards, and custom maintenance roles dubbed \u2018Personas,\u2019 Otis ONE is currently offered in 12 countries and aims to expand to an additional eight countries by year\u2019s end.\n\nThe solutions\u2019 real-time monitoring and dashboards also offer customers and Otis service teams the ability to collaborate on quick fixes and to plan next steps if potential difficulties are detected in any of the units, Leonard says.\n\n\u201cWe\u2019ve seen a really good improvement in avoiding service requests, call backs, and repeat returns to units,\u201d she says, adding that development on Otis ONE, which has earned a CIO 100 Award for IT innovation and leadership, started in 2019. \u201cOur biggest population is our field technicians so that kind of productivity is critical for us.\u201d\n\nFrom the edge to the cloud\n\nOtis ONE\u2019s cloud-native platform is built on Microsoft Azure and taps into a Snowflake data lake. IoT sensors send elevator data to the cloud platform, where analytics are applied to support business operations, including reporting, data visualization, and predictive modeling.\n\n\u201cAnalytics is really important,\u201d says Leonard, who declined to specify the analytics used but noted that it is Microsoft-friendly. \u201cThat\u2019s where a lot of the artificial intelligence and machine learning is applied. We analyze all the data we get back and then provide it to the field technician delivered to their mobile app.\u201d\n\nOtis ONE comprises three tiers, Leonard says \u2014 edge, platform, and enterprise. The edge consists of various gateways, controllers, and sensors deployed in Otis\u2019 Gen3 and Gen360 elevators, which relay data to the Azure cloud at a specific frequency via a cellular network. \n\nThe platform tier encapsulates the common entry point \u2014 an IoT event hub that processes messages sent to the cloud from the edge in real-time. A built-in rules engine then analyzes the data, determines the condition of the elevator, and sends alerts or \u201cinformed dispatches\u201d to customers and pre-defined \u201cpersonas,\u201d which can be remote technical experts, customer support representatives, or field technicians.\n\nSuch personalization benefits not only Otis technicians but customers as well. \u201cThey can see their units and the information is tailored to you if you\u2019re a building manager,\u201d Leonard says. \u201cIt\u2019s information that\u2019s pertinent to their role. We may share different data. If you\u2019re a building owner versus your field technician. For them it would be more technically oriented, whereas for our customers they really just want to know the health status of their units.\u201d\n\nOtis ONE\u2019s enterprise tier then integrates elevator and service data with data from its edge and platform tiers, and serves it up to web and mobile applications that display elevator data units across the globe, Leonard says.\n\n\u201cThe enterprise layer \u2026 presents integrated elevator service data in a real-time 360-degree view,\u201d she says, adding that customers can drill down into this data on a mobile application to see real-time updates on specific elevators, including whether it may be stalled or be having response issues. \u201cLet\u2019s say they have a large portfolio. They can see how their inventory is performing, drilling down to individual units.\u201d\n\nTransforming the elevator business\n\nOtis ONE is just one example of a larger trend that sees manufacturers enhancing core products with digital services, says Ivar Berntz, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner.\n\n\u201cWith the advent of the internet of things, most physical things can now be monitored, controlled, updated, and even operated remotely,\u201d Berntz says. \u201cThis opens up a new world of \u2018as-a-service\u2019 for manufacturers, who can now start to sell outcomes\u201d ranging from predictive maintenance to improved user experiences.\n\nAs part of this push to digitally transform Otis\u2019 business, Leonard is looking to expand Otis ONE\u2019s capabilities, including adding support for 5G and further enhancing its artificial intelligence and machine learning models. \u201cAs we grow this, [the units] should become healthier,\u201d the CIO says. \u201cWe don\u2019t know what we don\u2019t know yet, but we will focus on how we can use these disruptive technologies to continually improve our product.\u201d\n\nOtis is also exploring a \u201cmixed reality\u201d option that would enable a remote technician to troubleshoot a problem virtually in collaboration with a second technician physically inside an elevator unit. Such a solution would also enable technicians in different locations to view schematics simultaneously in an overlay.\n\n\u201cThis expands the technical reach of restoring that unit back to service,\u201d Leonard says.