Big data refers to a huge amount of data generated by various sources, including social media platforms, site logs, sensors, IoT devices, and others. It can be structured (like tables in a database management system), semi-structured (like XML files), or unstructured (like text files) (like audios, videos, images). This massive amount of data is beyond the capabilities of traditional database management systems.
Big Data allows businesses to extract meaningful insights that can help improve their internal operations like project management, sales, marketing, customer support, etc. Big data is instrumental for training machine learning models, predictive modelling, and other advanced analytics applications.
This blog will look into the most critical Big Data applications in numerous areas, industries and how these applications assist these sectors. For example, healthcare, finance, manufacturing, education, and logistics are a few industries that have immensely benefited from big data analytics.
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Need of Big Data in Industries
Now, let’s take a look at the most promising big data applications in the real world.
1. Big Data in Education Industry
The education sector is flooded with data regarding students, instructors, courses, and outcomes, among other things. Suppose this data is processed and analyzed using big data technologies. In that case, it can yield meaningful insights that can be used to improve the operational efficiency of educational establishments, the productivity of students, learning outcomes, etc.
The following are some of the areas of education that big data has successfully impacted:
- Big data can analyze individual student data to suggest and create customized learning experiences for them. This helps boost their overall performance and knowledge retention.
- Big data helps instructors and teachers to identify areas of improvement in their teaching methodologies and tweak them to cater to the dynamic needs of learners.
- Big data analytics has helped automate grading and evaluation, allowing teachers to grade papers and assignments quickly. It minimizes the possibility of manual errors in grading.
Big data-based e-learning solutions have helped solve a grim flaw in the educational system: the one-size-fits-all approach. Each student is unique with specific needs and goals, and hence, they will benefit greatly from personalized learning modules/curricula.
2. Big Data in the Banking Industry
Banks and financial institutions deal in sensitive data and assets. These institutions must adopt new-age technologies to keep public assets safe while also optimizing internal operations. Data science and big data analytics allow banks to handle, store and analyze colossal amounts of data without compromising security.
Big data technologies are making banks more efficient. From cash collection and credit evaluation to financial administration, big data analytics are seeping deep into the banking network. Not just that, big data applications help automate numerous banking processes, thereby reducing client hassle significantly.
Here are a few ways big data analytics is impacting the banking industry:
- Banks can make critical decisions using clustering methods. For example, it can locate new branch locations where there is significant demand.
- In the banking industry, the association rule is used to forecast the quantity of cash required in a branch at a given time of year.
- Banking systems are now digital, and all operations can be completed from the comfort of one’s own home, thanks to big data and data science technologies.
Today, banks use machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to detect fraudulent activities and predict potential threats even before they occur.
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3. Big Data in Healthcare
The Healthcare industry generates a large amount of data. Patient records, their medical and treatment history, along their behavioural and socioeconomic data form a massive pool of health data.
The following are some examples of how big data has aided healthcare:
- As there are fewer odds to undertake unnecessary diagnosis, big data lowers the cost of treatment.
- Big data aids in predicting epidemic outbreaks and determining what measures and steps can be taken to mitigate their consequences.
- It helps identify many diseases in the early stages and aids in their prevention. This, in turn, allows doctors and nurses to offer effective care and treatment to patients, promoting faster recovery.
- Medical practitioners can prescribe evidence-based medicine to patients by simply looking at their EHRs and understanding their medical history.
Wearable gadgets and fitness sensors have been created to enable real-time feeds to a patient’s electronic health record. Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, and FitBit are a few popular names in this segment. Wearables are encouraging patients to take active charge of their health. They can track their vitals, and if anything seems out of place, they can immediately connect with their doctor. Learn more about big data applications in healthcare.
4. Big Data in Government Sector
Governments are challenged with handling a large amount of critical data regularly. More importantly, they deal with voluminous information of national and international importance, which is why governments need big data tools. By analyzing and interpreting this big data, governments can reap myriad benefits, such as:
- Making informed and actionable decisions on matters of national importance.
- Address pressing challenges like unemployment, terrorism, exploration of energy resources, rising pollution, etc., and find innovative ways to improve the scenario.
- Identifying high-priority issues that require immediate attention.
- Understand the requirements of state and local governments and create customized programs/policies to address various challenges at the grassroots level.
- Government security agencies can use big data to detect criminal and terrorist activities and prevent them in due time.
In the USA, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – a part of the US Federal Government – uses extensive data analysis to uncover patterns and relationships to investigate unexpected or potential food-borne diseases.
5. Big Data in Transportation Industry
The transportation sector uses big data in many ways to make operations seamless, efficient, and convenient.
Following are some of the ways that big data help with transport:
Transport companies can use big data to analyze and estimate users’ demands across different routes. This will enable them to create improved route plans and delegate the most suitable vehicles for specific routes.
Congestion management and traffic control
Thanks to big data, real-time estimation of traffic and congestion patterns is now possible. For instance, people worldwide use Google Maps to find the least congested routes.
Real-time extensive data processing analysis helps identify accident-prone regions. This can significantly minimize accidents while improving traffic safety.
Let’s look at Uber as an example. Uber collects and analyses a large amount of data about drivers, their vehicles, their whereabouts, etc. In other words, the company monitors and collects data on every journey taken by all Uber vehicles. It uses this information to forecast the demand across different locations/routes, assign fares, etc.
6. Applications of Big Data in Tourism
The tourism industry is primarily based on the interest of tourist groups and how tourism companies deliver the most desirable tour packages to cater to customer requirements. Earlier, tourists had to rely on travel agencies and agents for their travelling needs. However, times have changed. Now, tourists can find all the necessary information via travelling apps, book tickets, make reservations – everything is just a few clicks away!
Thanks to digitalization and big data, tourists worldwide can share their experiences and knowledge, helping fellow travellers in their journey. Big data has made everything accessible to tourists.
Big data application in the tourism and travel industry:
- Big data tools can gather and analyze public information provided by tourists on social media and other digital channels.
- Tourism companies, hotels, and airlines can use big data to predict future demand, leverage target marketing, and optimize pricing strategies to enhance the customer experience.
- Travel agencies can deliver offers and discounts tailored to a specific consumer base according to their geo-location, traffic, and weather data.
To sum up, we can see how big data tools and technologies bring tangible changes in the real world. Companies in all industry parallels are leveraging big data to understand their target audience, innovate products, design solutions for everyday business challenges, and create memorable customer experiences. Essentially, big data is shaping our lives for the better.
As technology evolves, big data will undoubtedly be an integral element of this evolution process. We will witness many more revolutionary changes brought about by big data and data science in the coming years.
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Why are companies so interested in big data?
Big Data helps companies to make informed decisions, understand their customer desires. This analysis helps companies to achieve rapid growth by analyzing real-time data. Hence, companies are very interested in big data.
What kind of value addition big data offer?
Any firm can be drastically transformed by big data. It's replete with valuable patterns, trends, and insights. When these insights are revealed, they assist companies in formulating present and future strategy.
What kind of projects are better suitable for big data?
Big data projects are better suited to all tasks that require a significant amount of data crunching (mainly unstructured). As a result, telecommunications, banking, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, e-commerce, retail, energy, transportation, and other important industries are embracing Big Data.