Embedded software is the implementation of software onto dedicated hardware. A simple example of this is the many smart devices we have at home, that turn everyday appliances into electronic devices with smart functions through embedded software – like washing machines and even TVs. More information on the topic can be found, such as its drawbacks and challenges.
One benefit of embedded software, which is particularly why it’s used in cross-industry BI, is that it can run a pre-arranged program for clients with simplicity and at high speeds. For example, implementing embedded BI in industries that use GPS in their supply chain management can profoundly optimize transportation routes. The embedded software can be a means to accumulate vast amounts of data that is standardized across different industries to optimize tasks.
This can result in better responsiveness and efficiency, but it’s also cheaper and easier for businesses to implement when it’s embedded. Perhaps trucks are pre-installed with such GPS software and exportable data, or mobile robots.
Generally, embedded software is more dependable. Whilst it’s less versatile in being able to be altered or tweaked, it’s usually cheaper and more robust. One way that tweaks are made, though in a more centralized fashion, is over-the-air updates. This can relinquish the burden on different companies in different industries from keeping their systems updated, but it can also mean losing control over when and how they are updated.
For B2C customers, this is all the more important as most of us do not want to be in control of such updates, particularly for IoT products. A profound use case of sharing the data gathered from embedded software may be smart thermostats in our home with energy companies. Having a better understanding of what temperatures the average home is, and when these temperatures are desired at different times, could help in delivering energy more accurately.
On top of this, smart thermostats can use built-in AI to understand our own preferences more than we do ourselves so that the heating can come on and off at the optimal time. Feedback will become all the more important to embedded software, in which user response of questions can become an input into the system – but in an indirect way. In other words, the AI may understand our own needs better than we do, but frequent feedback can assist with this. In simplistic terms, we may think that we desire a certain numerical temperature in our home, but the software may ask us on an app now and then if we are cold.
Having embedded software can help standardize and share data across industries to make collaboration easier. For example, autonomous cars come with embedded software that will be pre-programmed to be compatible with popular maps, such as Google maps, making integration with our smartphones easier. It’s not unlikely that there will even be a collaboration between the two independent embedded software teams, to ensure integration is possible. Generally, we find embedded software to be of most convenience to customers, whilst businesses tend to resist the idea of not having full control over the software tweaking and updates.