The internet of things (IoT) is fraught with risks and uncertainties – but less so if you have experts holding your hand along the way.
6LowPAN, LPWAN, CoAP, JSON-LD – just some of the acronyms which identify the more than 70 protocols coming under the at least eight layers of an internet of things (IoT) system.
Complicated stuff. But with the value of the global IoT market forecast to reach £11.5 trillion by 2020, no business, least of all manufacturers of consumer goods or commercial equipment, can afford not to get involved in IoT sooner or later. And as IoT technology matures and offerings becoming more sophisticated, even a complex cross-platform deployment of embedded technology and cloud systems connecting in real time is becoming much more straightforward for IoT solution providers than it was just three years ago.
That’s not to say that building an IoT system is devoid of any risks, missteps or failures. Global management consulting firm McKinsey, for example, found that 17 per cent of IoT projects go so terribly wrong that they can threaten the very existence of a business.
Even some of the companies with the financial resources, expertise and confidence to go it alone using the IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) solutions of major cloud service providers can often lack clarity on what is covered by the contract, and what aspects of the implementation and operation will fall on them. Not only that, but these services lack key application development capabilities that a platform such as Ayla Networks provides, and ultimately cost many times more to manage in the long term.
Businesses opting for do-it-yourself IoT are provided with the IoT building blocks, but they’ll need to do all the heavy lifting by integrating those blocks into a system via a lot of testing. Then, once it’s up and running, they’ll have to manage, support and maintain it to ensure optimal performance. Being left – both literally and figuratively – to their own devices they will face potential problems such as the failure to get OTA (over-the-air) software updates, inconsistent device data streaming or limitations to upscaling the system.
IoT deployment as a service
Thankfully, for more risk-averse businesses – and for those who learned the hard way – today IoT deployment can already be achieved on a platform-as-a-service basis too. Subscribing to platform services can enable IoT solution providers to get a fully-functioning, high-quality, supported and scalable product to market in a few months.
Contracts with platform providers will cover a range of microservices such as provisioning, application enablement, access control, device and data management. Maintenance and support are also covered by contracts. Bringing up new IoT services in new locations around the globe ceases to be a challenge and modularity ensures that products can be easily adapted to future requirements.
Silicon Valley-based Ayla Networks is a leading IoT platform & solutions provider that combines edge connectivity, device management and application enablement capabilities in a highly secure platform. With IoT driving digital transformation in companies worldwide, Ayla’s solutions give companies the boost they need, combining a higher opportunity for growth with a streamlined, lower-cost service and support framework. Taking reductions in IoT deployment costs and time-to market a step further with a robust ecosystem of partners and the agility of the Ayla platform, Ayla radically simplifies the building of IoT-enabled products, always finding innovative ways for businesses to easily and effectively gain value from IoT.
The most recent case in point is Ayla’s new, portable software agent. Software agents and hardware chips make up the modules embedded in IoT devices. Until now, software agents needed to be built and certified to work with chip and module specific types – a process that could take a year or more. Ayla’s portable software agent removes the need to test and certify a different software agent with every chip and module variation or to port the agent to a chosen module. From Fujitsu, Best Buy and Hamilton Beach to Shark Ninja, Kenmore, Carrier and Salus Controls, companies are discovering that this agnostic approach – any module, any device, any cloud – is a compelling differentiator.
Surveys show that 60 per cent of businesses substantially underestimate the complexities of building IoT services. Providing clarity regarding the risks of deployment and the services and tools with capabilities to mitigate these risks can ensure that, more businesses can take full advantage of the Goldilocks moment of low-risk, future-proof deployment prior to the imminent explosive growth of the IoT market.
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