IOT- A new revolution that has swept the business entities off their feet. It has given rise to a wave of rapid adaption of IOT by small and big entities alike. What is IOT and why has it created so much of hype? Let us get to the definition of IOT to understand what it actually is.
IOT/Internet of things is said to be a network of physical devices that are connected for the sake of sharing date and information. These devices can be home appliances, vehicles, electronics and much more. Embedded software, sensors, and connectivity enable these devices to exchange data. Industry experts have predicted that the number of connected devices is likely to grow from 8 billion (2017) to 20 billion (2020).
More and more business entities are plunging into the IOT. However, a recent study showed that unparalleled challenges are being faced by them at the time of building and deploying IOT projects. A Cisco survey in 2017 stated that over 60% of the entities admit to have underestimated the complexities and hurdles of managing an IOT of their own. Something more alarming revealed by the survey was that 75% of the self-initiated IOT projects were a failure!
When entities decide to build an IOT service of their own, it will require them to have software and hardware ecosystem of their own which is more complex than a standard web application. All round expertise of various engineering disciplines like computer, electrical, hardware, network and the list goes on. For launching a successful IOT system, entities must first attempt to understand the complexities of designing, building, and maintenance. And then accordingly decide if it is better to build a custom platform or purchase a managed IOT platform.
COMPLEXITIES INVOLVED IN MANAGING IOT PLATFORM-
- SECURITY/PRIVACY ISSUE- There are whole lot of privacy concerns when it comes to IOT. Basically, entities need to create a service that is capable of securing and protecting the cloud connection, API connection and every other thing that will connect to the managed service. Hence, this is not a one-time process. Constant research and innovation and a dynamic team that can stream the mechanism have to work round the clock to keep pace with detection, access control and other security needs.
- SCALABILITY- Scalability is a common issue that every project faces in the initial stages. It is important to keep in mind that IOT platform is not about scaling a single device or product. It is about an entire process. Scaling wrongly can make your costs to hit the skies and cause your system to fail.
- EXPERTISE- IOT service development involves expertise from various fields. It involves knowledge of electrical engineering, manufacturing, security, server infrastructure and lot more. If the project needs to be completed within the stipulated time, it is always advisable to help of the IOT domain experts.
- DESIGN, BUILD & TEST- In order to run IOT service entities need to give in ample of time to the hardware, software, network and server requirements. Getting started with the developmental phase needs lot of resource restructuring and allocation. IOT systems will need specific deployment and testing infrastructure in place. Appropriate planning and plotting of networks and connectivity strategies are of utmost importance so that devices can easily connect to them.
- IOT SENSORS & NETWORKING- A managed IOT service demands middleware which is capable of establishing gateway connections among the application layers and device sensors. The work will not end just by integrating and setting up the middleware. It will need to be maintained and measured from time to time in order to make sure of their functionality. An Intel report in 2016 stated that 85% of the gadgets were not configured to communicate appropriately. This is where the importance of a well configured and maintained middleware takes the front seat.
It is necessary for entities entering the IOT arena to understand the depth of these complexities and take actions accordingly. At any given point when entities think of an IOT platform of their own, they have 2 options in their hands- build a custom IOT platform or buying a managed IOT Platform. The above six complexities need to be studied thoroughly in detail before selecting any of the above two options for IOT services.