Internet of Things (IoT)
Leveraging Cloud Infrastructure to Boost Office Efficiency
The number of internet-enabled devices – for enterprise, small to mid-size business (SMB), and personal use – has grown exponentially over the last decade, giving rise to the term Internet of Things (IoT).
Among the many examples of internet-connected systems are networked printers, MFPs, and scanners. What were once standalone output devices are now digital communication hubs designed with embedded (and optional) technologies that leverage the power of the internet, so businesses can seamlessly share, collaborate, and drive business process improvement.
IoT Bridges the Gap
IoT bridges the technology gap by enabling once standalone hardware and software to talk to one another. This communication between disparate systems, technologies and device types is the foundation of today’s smart office landscape.
The shift to remote work, which began with the rise of mobile technology, and the cloud, has been accelerated by the 2020 pandemic. Consequently, it’s more important than ever that technology enable us to work smarter, faster, and more efficiently. Brother understands those requirements and is available to assist, with products, solutions, and professional consultative services that…
- Improve mobility – Without a computer, you can wirelessly... - Scan to and print from popular cloud services using Brother Web Connect.1
- Streamline document workflow – Easily scan to email, network folder, SSH server; use OCR to convert PDFs to Word files; automate tasks, reduce errors by customizing the device’s user interface.3
- Support solution integration – Perform comprehensive capture, print management, and document security tasks using a single embedded interface – Kofax ControlSuite.
- Simplify device management – Display device status, change network/configuration settings, automate meter reads/toner reordering, check supply levels, all from a standard web browser.
- Recover printing costs – Leveraging third-party software like PaperCut MF to track, charge, and bill for printing, scanning, and copying.
- Gather predictive analytics – Implement a proactive service model to help ensure maintenance cycles stay on schedule.
- Enhance security – Require NFC card reader to enable easy network user authentication; set device usage rules; create password-protected PDFs; enable wireless encryption; secure print queue.
- Assist with regulatory compliance – Track volume, usage, and user data; automatically-generated audit trails; document security.
- Scan to and print from your mobile device (with Brother iPrint&Scan app installed).2
- Retrieve a document via QR code, without being connected to the network, using Scan to Mobile.3
- Route jobs to a device on the network, with Follow-Me Printing and Secure Print Release.4
The IoT Puzzle
Such wide-ranging, interconnected capabilities can be viewed as three pieces to a larger puzzle, 1. user experience, 2. device management, and 3. information security. If not for advancements in IoT technology, these puzzle pieces would remain in separate silos. Instead, today’s system engineers leverage open-source internet protocols – TCP/IP, IPP, SMTP, SSL, HTTPS – to develop seamless synergies between hardware, software, and custom business applications. The goal: improve overall office efficiency and data security, build agile workgroups, and increase profitability. In support of those goals, Brother technology offers an unprecedented level of visibility and control over printer fleet operation and workflow: the pieces are all there…
- User Experience
The user experience is straightforward… Identify, design, and deploy an array of cutting-edge product features, functions, and expert services…
- Ease of use – Intuitive, customizable touchscreen display; easy menu navigation.
- Time savings – One-touch icons for fast job turnaround; hassle-free supply replenishment.
- Reliability – Long-lasting supplies; auto toner and ink fulfillment; generous limited warranty.
- Quality – Consistent, high-quality full-color and black-and-white output.
- Device sharing – Built-in wireless and Ethernet interfaces.
- Mobility – Leverage apps to connect and share right from a smartphone or tablet.
- Support – Free online, live chat or call support for the life of product.
Within Brother printers, MFPs, and scanners, IoT technologies work in the background to provide users with metrics to better manage network devices, from virtually anywhere, at any time. Users access meter data, view supply levels, report/audit usage trends, and facilitate remote device configuration and diagnostics. These capabilities, and much more, are available through Brother’s broad portfolio of solutions and services.
Find out more about our managed print services (MPS).
Along with digital document capture and routing comes a concern for data security. To mitigate that security threat, Brother offers triple layer security to help protect your most valuable asset – information.
- Built-in security features – To help protect documents, devices, and networks.
- Support for the latest protocols – To help eliminate outside threats.
- Limit device access – By group, individual, and activity levels.
Discover how our document security solutions can help protect sensitive data.
IoT Empowers Everything
The Internet of Things is an ever-expanding universe of connected devices that leverage a vast network of computers (in the cloud) to gather, process, and exchange information. Whether tracking inventory, monitoring groceries supplies, controlling thermostats, surveilling the front door, or printing wirelessly, IoT makes it all possible.
In short, IoT drives the automation of otherwise manual, time-consuming, and cumbersome tasks, creating newfound efficiencies across your enterprise - large or small. For Brother, this requires strategic deployment of network solutions that effectively streamline front-end and back-end document processing tasks. When a print fleet is balanced to those application needs, as well as business objectives, immediate and tangible benefits can be realized – reduced IT burden, improved collaboration, happier end users, and fast return-on-investment (ROI).