Intelligent Systems

Microsoft delivers a unique, integrated approach to helping enterprises capitalize on Internet of Things through intelligent systems. Watch this video to see how connecting devices and harnessing data can impact your company’s bottom line.
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2013 Intelligent systems leadership summit

Intelligent systems powered by Microsoft

By gathering, storing and processing data, your business can leverage existing technologies and infrastructure to create intelligent systems that enable you to realize opportunities that would otherwise be out of reach. Microsoft’s approach extends from our breadth product portfolio for a range of PCs, tablets and industry devices on the edge of enterprise networks, developer tools, backend systems and services, and a diverse ecosystem. Spanning from small connected sensors to rich industry devices, these intelligent systems help enterprises harness the trusted Windows platform to gather data from the edge of the network, process it with Microsoft’s data platform and serve it securely through engaging applications that drive real-time analysis and actionable opportunities that would otherwise be out of reach. It’s all possible through technology innovations that leverage the vast potential of data.

Wired Windows Embedded 2013
The Internet of Things Our Mission and VisionIndustry FocusImpact of Industry DevicesOur Solutions Approach

The Internet of Things

Internet-enabled devices generate tremendous amounts of valuable data, transforming decision-making for enterprises and revolutionizing the customer experience. Previously self-contained industry devices are increasingly being connected to intelligent systems that harness and analyze vast amounts of actionable data. These intelligent systems are helping to realize the potential of the Internet of Things by optimizing business intelligence with anywhere, anytime access to critical information.

Intelligent systems are now considered essential for the growth of today’s enterprise, and it may soon be impossible to businesses to remain competitive without a strategy in place. Already, according to The Economist Intelligence Unit, three-quarters of companies (75%) are either actively exploring the IoT or already using it, and three years from now, almost all senior executives (96%) expect their business to be using the IoT in some respect (© Reproduced by permission of The Economist Intelligence Unit, The Internet of Things Business Index, October 2013). Together with the power and resources of the cloud, intelligent systems with industry devices running on Windows Embedded span companies, communities and countries within the Internet of Things.

 Previous Next: Our Mission and Vision 

Our Mission and Vision

Actionable data fueled by intelligent systems is the true value of the Internet of Things–and it’s the new currency for business. The value of this rapidly expanding technology is expected to increase exponentially in the coming years, improving how people live, learn and conduct business. IDC estimates that by 2017 the Internet of Things market will reach $7.3 trillion (IDC, Worldwide Internet of Things Spending by Vertical Markets 2014-2017 Forecast, Doc # 246384, February, 2014). With intelligent systems, Microsoft is helping organizations realize this value by providing a wide range of operating systems, tools, and systems and services that transform critical data into operational intelligence.

Our mission is to drive business growth and competitive advantage for our enterprise customers and partners through technology innovations that capitalize on the vast potential of data. Your investment in Windows Embedded is backed by Microsoft’s proven commitment to intelligent systems through more than 15 years of experience in the market.

 Previous: The Internet of Things  Next: Industry Focus 

Industry Focus

Intelligent systems are revolutionizing business and Microsoft is focused on driving innovation in retail and hospitality, healthcare, manufacturing, and automotive industries. Customized solutions built with Windows Embedded harness Microsoft technologies to address specific industry needs by connecting devices on the edge of enterprise networks with existing IT infrastructures—on a single platform. The resulting intelligent systems and the data they enable help retailers deliver personal, seamless and differentiated experiences to customers; manufacturers increase efficiencies at every level of the operation to deliver innovative services, implement best-practice operations and enhance planning and decision-making processes; healthcare institutions optimize patient care and outcomes by bringing people, processes and information together; and automakers evolve “connected car” experiences, allowing drivers to access innovative in-car communication, infotainment, navigation and fuel-efficiency features.

 Previous: Our Mission and Vision Next: Impact of Industry Devices 

Impact of Edge Devices

Whether digital signs or point-of-service terminals in a store environment, handheld devices or robots on the manufacturing floor, or thin client devices in hospitals, Microsoft-based industry devices transform business intelligence to actionable operation intelligence. Organizations gain the ability to translate data into new insights that can be used to grow, expand and streamline operations, and improve customer, employee and partner interactions. Every device running Windows Embedded contains the power, familiarity and reliability of Windows. In addition, when it’s time to deploy your intelligent system, you have the added ability to work with a solution provider to customize, secure and manage your industry devices.

 Previous: Industry Focus Next: Our Solutions Approach 

Our Solutions Approach

Microsoft’s tools, technologies and services for intelligent system solutions extend beyond a software package or device; the great power and flexibility of industry devices running the Windows Embedded platform is that it works in concert with Microsoft’s cloud products and services, and with existing IT infrastructure to customize a complete connected system.

Windows Embedded minimizes risk and complexity by providing one trusted platform with which to build solutions and broaden business opportunity. Windows Embedded fits with your needs, connecting data across a diverse set of technologies, providing compatibility across your existing systems, and enabling customization through a worldwide network of partners, to increase ease of use and drive efficiency. And a Microsoft solution extends the intelligence of your organization, increasing opportunities for your workforce to act on data and insights that would otherwise be out of reach.

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Key attributes of an intelligent system

Drive sustainable competitive advantage for your enterprise by creating a customized solution built on Windows Embedded, and you’ll reap real-time, tangible benefits that can be defined by six key attributes of intelligent systems.



Collecting and delivering the right data in the right context to the right person or device makes organizations smarter and customer service better. But it’s a complex challenge to manage identity as inputs increase across users, devices and discrete sub systems. Intelligent systems based on Windows Embedded help companies strike a balance between the increased complexity caused by more users and devices, and the increased value created by greater data generation. An identity-driven intelligent system has the promise of enabling key business decisions based on an individual person or device, leading to smarter interactions and greater effectiveness in achieving business goals.



Security was simpler when systems or devices were isolated and the number of entry points to a system could be tightly controlled. Now, business value is found in more connected systems—and is increased when more data is available to be analyzed—making security more difficult and costly. The more devices connecting to a system, the more vulnerable that system becomes. Data security is also more complicated with more systems using the same data source for different types of analytics, yet each system has its own unique vulnerabilities and consumes data differently. Solutions built on Windows Embedded create intelligent systems that are connected in an endless loop from edge to back-end, at one time connected and secure.



A system that creates a constant dialog between industry devices and data-analysis systems is more intelligent and flexible, able to quickly implement system-wide changes. This level of connectivity contributes directly to a company’s ability to innovate and compete, but the cost of having all devices or sensors connected all the time can be prohibitive. An intelligent system built on Windows Embedded makes it possible to control when and how these edge devices are connected, and what data should be captured, increasing the ROI from these solutions. Built on trusted Microsoft technology, these solutions are also future-proof, able to evolve with the market and provide long-term support. This level of connectivity contributes directly to competitive edge and rapid innovation in any industry.



Data flows two ways in an intelligent system; industry devices transmit data to back-end analysis systems for business insight, and management systems monitor and update devices and systems. An intelligent system built on Windows Embedded allows devices to be managed and even programed remotely from any location, ensuring continuous safety and security, and enabling customization to a company’s requirements or different user’s preferences. An intelligent system can reduce the time and cost it takes to manage a device, and make updates possible at any time, from any place. Improved manageability means changes can happen quickly, without delay in implementation—from productivity, to efficiency, to customer-service improvements.


User Experience

Employees have come to expect the same easy-to-learn, intuitive interactions they get from consumer devices in the technology they use at work, and Windows Embedded partners are responding. Natural user interaction (NUI) capabilities, such as touch and voice, are appearing in many industry devices, increasing ease of use, reducing training time, and making employee and customer experiences more enjoyable overall. In considering user experience, an intelligent system can be made to capture data never before available, and make it accessible to the whole system, rather than just within a single discrete solution. Serving up an intuitive user experience at the edge can create new, user-centric data that yields greater insight into real customer and employee needs, feeding innovation for the business.



Never before has so much data been available, and enterprises that generate and tap into rich data sources are gaining a competitive edge. An intelligent system powered by Windows Embedded can uncover new areas of business intelligence, breaking through traditional data analytics to create a rapid-fire, continuous loop of insight and action. Companies can create strategies for storing and analyzing vast amounts of new data directly from devices, making decisions and acting on them in real time, maximizing efficiencies in everything from inventory to the supply chain, and making long-term plans based on ever-more sophisticated data analysis.

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