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Top 4 Challenges in IoT Product Development That No One Talks About

An article by Abhinav Dubey.

The quality of IoT products should never be compromised. Not only are they accountable for an unimaginable volume of user data but also an important pillar of Web 3.0. The times are gone when IoT was new and errors during development were tolerated. It’s matured and it’s everywhere. Ever since the “75% failure rate” of IoT projects surfaced on the web, enterprises have woken up to learning about the potential challenges they could face.

In this article we discuss the 4 most important challenges that most IoT companies have to face.

Challenge 1: Selecting A Tech Partner That Understands Full-Scale IoT Development

We all can agree for a fact that IoT has to deal with an awfully large amount of variables. So a good question to ask is where to start? And what about the platform, devices, data, code or even people?

These parameters are a part of the bigger game which is exactly what you need today. But what about the upgrades that you will need 3 years down the lane? Will they require expertise and advanced data analysis about clients, customers, industry, market and technology as well?

To start with, it is wise to approach public forums and marketplaces. Ioterra, for example, provides a comprehensive listing of professionals and tech companies working in IoT. Similarly, there’s IoT Marketplace (dot) com that provides on-demand software talent. Others include AT&T that provides cloud infrastructure to create and build IoT applications.

When looking for partnering with a tech partner make sure they understand your business model and provide solutions catering to the requirements of your business. If you are a small or medium-sized enterprise. The managed tech provider should grant you the strategy, scale, resources and knowledge needed to grow.

Challenge 2: Unable to Choose The Right Gateways

When it comes to IoT gateways the most important thing is making sure that all the elements are connected and the server properly. Several different connectivity protocols come with various devices and sensors like WiFi, Bluetooth, Zigbee and serial ports. Remember these all have different energy profiles. And why are IoT gateways important?

Just because they are installed in between the IoT sensors, connected devices and the cloud. This is partly why the entire ecosystem depends on these gateways.

If we look at modern intelligent gateways made by Intel, Dell, Nexcom or other top industry leaders, they all come with some basic mandatory features. This is purely done for the ease of use for developers. All they need to do is select a provider that meets your business requirements for IoT application.

However, before you go about doing this several things need to be considered. Look out for memory capabilities, network specifications, power rating and the development environment among other things. Always ensure that you get private, secure and credible communication between your devices so that they work seamlessly.

Challenge 3: Not Taking Security Implementation Seriously

More than 1.51 billion IoT attacks happened in the first half of 2021. We all know that more devices mean more data and thus more cyber attacks. That’s also one major reason why most IoT products don’t sustain for long.

Security and privacy are perhaps the most controversial yet crucial challenges that IoT app development faces. And by security, we don’t just mean network security but also the privacy of all the components involved in an IoT app.

It’s important to understand that IoT apps are backed up by hardware and software that allows large volumes of data to transfer via several connected devices. This simultaneously interferes with the personal space of the users involved as well. More importantly, when we are dealing with such huge amounts of data on the cloud it becomes more susceptible to hacking and cyber-attacks.

How can we ever forget the 2016 Dyn DDoS Cyberattack that shut down and slowed down all major online portals? This is a cue why security is usually a challenge when developing an IoT application.

Look out for:

DATA EXCHANGE SECURITY is an important data encryption protocol that is required during app development. This allows data to be transferred from IoT devices and sensors to a gateway and then finally on the cloud in a secure way.

PHYSICAL SECURITY is easy to tamper with if you are a hacker as IoT devices can easily go unattended. So make sure a security component is always available in your IoT device.

CLOUD SECURITY STORAGE can be a challenge because developers always need to make sure that their IoT platform is well encrypted and gives proper authorization along with protecting the data.

PRIVACY UPDATES are important as IoT devices always run parallel to rules and regulations. A good example is HIPAA guidelines that store patient information on the cloud via IoT devices. Complying with such policies ensures that your data is protected at all times.

Challenge 4: Cross-Platform Compatibility (Hardware & Devices)

When working on developing an IoT application always keep technological advancements that require adjustments in the future. Thus, flexibility that gives you an equilibrium of both hardware and software functions is a key component.

It can be hard for IoT application designers to guarantee smooth functioning on both the platform and the devices regardless of updates, heavy OS and other bug fixes. Programmers need to ensure that their IoT apps are seamlessly incorporated within the ecological community keeping in mind the hardware and software.

Find a Solution

There’s a solution for every problem and the IoT ecosystem is finally producing the required resources to accomplish the same. Unlike previous years, we are a more mature industry with hands-on expertise in taking up complicated business requirements. All that companies should do is make an effort to identify the potential bottlenecks and connect with the right talent.

Author Bio: Abhinav Dubey is an entrepreneur, a strategist and a technologist at heart. With over 10 years of industry experience at the likes of Honeywell and AMD, and over 5 years of experience in IoT with a successful startup exit. Abhinav holds an MBA from the University of Oxford, U.K, and an MS from Christ University, Bangalore.

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