IoT-connected coolers for brewers, bottlers, and retail

u-blox removes IoT communications complexity for ‘always on’ connected refrigeration.

Predictive maintenance and proactive beverage replenishment are driving the business case for connected refrigerators, freezers, and dispensing equipment.  However, because data can now be collected in a globally-ubiquitous and cost-efficient manner, many new opportunities are being derived from the sensor output from connected equipment.

Read on to find out how the IoT – and u-blox – can support brewers, bottlers, and retailers, helping them reduce costs, increase profitability, and improve visibility in asset management.


u-blox has enabled brewers, bottlers, and retailers to implement both proof-of-concept and production implementations with ease and at a fixed predictable low cost.

  • Reduction in loss of fridges, kegs and other equipment through real-time location awareness
  • Maximized earning potential and improved uptime of equipment through predictive maintenance
  • Increased revenue through predictive replenishment
  • Less wastage through real-time monitoring of consumption
  • Improved product experience through real-time quality control

Get in touch to bring your chillers to life

When developing an IoT strategy to support your business, the communications part is not necessarily the first consideration. However, when putting together the many elements in the design of your overall approach, the availability of communications, and a clear idea of running costs will always be an important part of the outcome required. 

There are many considerations to decide between the design of your device and having unfettered access to the data they create as illustrated below.

u-blox works with brewing equipment manufacturers to enable their equipment to simply transmit their sensor data into the enterprise, for a fixed low price, anywhere on the planet.

IoT Communication-as-a-Service MQTT

Case study - AB InBev

IoT chiller beer bottles

The challenges

ABInBev discovered that buying off-the-shelf IoT solutions was not the best way to overcome business challenges.

  • Persistent theft of fridges supplied to vendors
  • Fridge maintenance was entirely reactive
  • Coolers switched off overnight causing equipment stress
  • No visibility of beer service quality
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IoT refrigerator AB InBev

The solution

This partnership between u-blox, CIRT, Staycold, Digital Twin, and Microsoft created a low-cost track and trace/condition monitoring device incorporated into fridges that provides the following data:

  • Location
  • Connected state (on or off)
  • Temperature inside the cooler
  • Condensor temperature
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Beer in IoT chiller

The outcomes

ABInBev invested in creating a practical solution that addresses their pain points. This provides data for improving inventory awareness, product delivery, and quality of service.

  • Accurate location of coolers at all times
  • Data for preventative and predictive maintenance
  • Data to improve asset acquisition and use
  • Live condition monitoring to ensure service standardization
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