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How Doews IoT help in Retail? Continuous and seamless communication is now a reality between people, processes and things.  IoT has been enabling retailers to connect with people and businesses and gain useful insight about product performance and engagement of people with such products. 

Importance of IoT in Retail

  • It helps improve customer experience in new ways and helps brick and mortar shops compete with their online counterparts by engaging customers in different ways.
  • IoT can track customer preferences, analyze their habits and share relevant information with the marketing teams and help improve the product or brand features and design and keep the customer updated on new products, delivery status etc.
  • Using IoT retailers can increase efficiency and profitability in various ways for their benefit.
  • IoT can significantly improve the overall customer experience, like automated checkouts and integration with messaging platforms and order systems.
  • It helps increase efficiency in transportation and logistics by reducing the time to deliver goods to market or store. It helps in vehicle management, and tracking deliveries. This helps in reducing costs, improving the bottom line and increasing customer satisfaction.
  • Inventory management becomes easier with IoT. Tracking inventory is much easier and simpler from the stocking of goods to initiating a purchase.
  • It helps increase operational efficiency in warehouses, by optimizing temperature controls, improving maintenance, and managing the warehouse. 

Use Cases of IoT in Retail

  1. IoT is used in Facility management to ensure day-to-day areas are clean and can be used to monitor consumable supplies levels. It can be used to monitor store environments like temperature, lighting, ventilation and refrigeration. IoT can identify key areas that can provide a complete 360 degrees view of facility management.
  2. It can help in tracking the number of persons entering a facility. This is especially useful because of the pandemic situation, to ensure that no overcrowding takes place.
    Occupancy sensors provide vital data on store traffic patterns and also on the time spent in any particular area. This helps retailers with better planning and product placement strategies. This helps in guided selling with more effective display setups, layouts, and space management.
  3. IoT helps in a big way for Supply chain and logistics, by providing information on the stock levels. 
  4. IoT helps in asset tracking in items like shopping carts and baskets. Sensors can ensure that location data is available for all carts making retrieval easy. It can help lock carts if they are taken out of location.
  5. IoT devices can and are being used to personalize user experience. Bluetooth beacons are used to send personalized real-time alerts to phones when the customer is near an aisle or a store. This can prompt a customer to enter the store or look at the aisle area and take advantage of offers etc. IoT-based beacons, helps Target, collect user data and also send hyper-personalized content to customers.
  6. Smart shelves are another example of innovative IoT ideas. Maintaining shelves to refill products or ensure correct items are placed on the right shelves is a time-consuming task. Smart shelves automate these tasks easily. They can help save time and resolve manual errors.

Businesses should utilize new technologies to revolutionize the retail sector in a better way. Digitalization or digital transformation of brick and mortar stores is not a new concept. With every industry wanting to improve its services and facilities and trying to stay ahead of the competition, digitalization in retail industry is playing a big role in this transformation. To summarize, digitalization helps in enhanced data collection, helps data-driven customer insights, gives a better customer experience, and increases profits and productivity. It encourages a digital culture.

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The Internet of Things has grown in popularity over the previous few decades. It has converted robots into lifelike assets, and its influence is expanding by the day. Today, communication gadgets outnumber humans, and they make our lives more convenient and intelligent than ever before. So, if you're thinking of developing an IoT app and want to know how much it will cost, this article is for you.

Furthermore, research forecasts that by 2025, there will be around 21 billion linked gadgets. However, this isn't the only reason that IoT app development is growing in popularity; there are other reasons as well. It emphasizes every aspect of the cost of producing an IoT app.

Market Statistics of IoT App Development

  • In the next years, 65 percent of marketers feel that firms that do not have IoT-based apps would fall behind.
  • According to Gartner, there will be around 20 billion connected devices in 2020, which will more than quadruple by 2024-25.
  • Approximately 95% of decision-makers anticipate their companies to use IoT applications by the end of 2025.
  • The base installation for 5G IoT endpoints was 3.5 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach 49 billion by 2024.
  • By 2025, the number of internet-connected devices is expected to reach 28 billion.
  • These figures demonstrate the ever-increasing need for high-quality IoT applications, as well as their relevance in driving company development and productivity. So, now that you know why you should go into IoT mobile app development, let's get started.

Most Significant Applications Of IoT By Industry 

  • IoT apps For the Retail Sector

IoT apps have a promising future in the retail business. Retailers are investing in IoT solutions, namely to track and manage the supply chain and inventory operations.The need for IoT-powered mobile apps for supply chain management tracking is increasing. Retailers can remotely monitor and measure certain areas of supply chain activities. Such an automated procedure will assure high-level security, lower operating costs, and improve business outcomes.

On the other hand, IoT is rapidly being integrated into the creation of mobile apps to track and manage stocks. Warehouse management or inventory management software based on IoT tracks stock levels digitally, assisting shops in balancing demand and supply and improving sales outcomes.

  •  IoT Mobile Apps For Smart Home Automation

One of the key reasons for the increased demand for IoT mobile app development is smart home automation. Sensor-enabled smart home gadgets make people's lives more pleasant, convenient, easy, and intelligent. The incorporation of IoT in mobile apps allows users to operate all compatible smart home gadgets, such as LEDs, cameras, refrigerators, and so on, while on the road.

Here's a popular IoT app that allows users to control smart home devices from afar.

Amazon Alexa is an intelligence program that uses voice commands to operate smart home products. Users may use the Alexa mobile app to control switches, thermostats, and any Alexa-enabled smart electrical home products.

Applications Of IoT Technology For Healthcare Apps Development

IoT technology is quickly becoming a critical component of the healthcare app development market. IoT integration is becoming common in fitness applications, wearables, and other patient monitoring apps.

Yes. The development of IoT-based mobile apps for tracking and monitoring health is a market trend. As a result, the future of IoT mobile apps for smartwatches or wearables seems promising.

Leading enterprise-level software development firms, for example, are already on their way to providing futuristic IoT apps for wearables to measure pulse rate, body temperature, calories burned, sleep quality, steps walked, and so on. This information provided by sensor-equipped wearables is easily accessible via IoT smartphone apps.

What is the typical cost to build an Internet of Things app?

A typical Internet of Things app costs $20,167 to develop. The entire cost, however, might be as little as $5,000 or as high as $35,000. An Internet of Things app with fewer functionalities (also known as a "minimum viable product," or MVP) will be less expensive than an app with all planned capabilities.

For example, these are some current Crowdbotics Internet of Things app price quotes:

$27,500

$23,000

$10,000

However, the cost of IoT mobile app development or solution will be determined by a number of factors, including:

  • Types of applications that are long with the complicity
  • The cost of IoT app development is determined by the number of developers on your app application development team.
  • Depends on how long it takes to design, create, test, and post-develop an IoT app.
  • The cost of developing a mobile application varies depending on where you live. As an example:
  • South-East Asian custom mobile app development firms would charge between $20 and $40 per hour.
  • A mobile app development business in Eastern Europe will charge between $30 and $50.
  • The top mobile app development business in India would charge between $50 and $25 per hour.

IoT mobile application development is becoming popular due to the rising demand for IoT-based mobile apps from organizations across sectors. IoT app development has a promising future in areas such as automotive, healthcare, and smart home automation, as well as security.

 

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The Internet of Things is one of the technologies making yesterday’s science fiction the reality of today. It will act as a force multiplier for digitization and can potentially transform the world into a smart one - smart cities, smart vehicles, smart manufacturing, smart homes, and many others. According to IDC, spending on IoT by businesses and other entities is going to reach $1 trillion in 2022. Further, out of the projected connected devices of 29 billion by 2022, around 18 billion are expected to be related to IoT. And the data generated by these devices will be to the tune of 73.1 zettabytes by 2025.

In other words, ignoring the penetration of IoT across domains and not investing in its vast sweep could be detrimental to the competitiveness of business enterprises in the future. Even though the IoT will continue on its upward trajectory in use cases and device numbers, enterprises should take into account the challenges related to interoperability and security. Let us discuss the top IoT predictions that IoT testing services, or for that matter, the CIOs of enterprises, should acknowledge and incorporate in their value chain.

Top IoT Forecasts for CIOs to Recognize

As a smart technology, the Internet of Things is going to change the landscape of the digital world. The top IoT forecasts for the years to come are mentioned below:

# AI-based IoT data analysis: With IoT being adopted as a frontline technology by most organizations, there will be a need to gather, store, process, and analyze huge amounts of data generated by it. This is where AI-based data analysis will take over from traditional analysis wherein data mined by IoT devices will be analyzed for known patterns to draw insights about various aspects of an organization. AI is going to be applied to a host of IoT-generated data in the form of still images, video, speech, text, and network traffic activities. This should drive the CIOs of business enterprises to implement the necessary skills and tools to leverage AI in their IoT testing approach.

# IoT with legal, social, and ethical dimensions: With the increased adoption of IoT across business segments, a wide range of social, ethical, and legal issues may come to the fore. These may include privacy, regulatory compliance, algorithmic bias, and ownership of data, among others. In fact, the success of any IoT solution should not be based on its technical prowess or effectiveness alone, but on social acceptability as well. Hence, CIOs should review their corporate strategy, IoT and AI systems, and key algorithms by external agencies for any potential bias. In doing so, they may include external IoT testing services to not only validate the technical aspects of such systems but their social, ethical, and legal dimensions as well.

# Data broking and infonomics: According to a Gartner survey, businesses are going to include the buying and selling of IoT data as an essential part of their strategy. As per the theory of infonomics, the monetization of IoT data will be treated as a strategic asset by businesses and included in their accounts. CIOs should educate their staff on the opportunities and risks pertaining to data broking and set the appropriate IT policies, including incorporating mandatory IoT testing in the value chain.

# Transition from Intelligent Edge to Intelligent Mesh: The transition from cloud to edge architectures in the IoT space is underway and is likely to give way to a more unstructured architecture in the form of a dynamic mesh. The mesh architectures will lead to more intelligent, responsive, and flexible IoT systems, but with additional complexities. As a result, CIOs must prepare their organisations for the impact of mesh architectures on IoT systems. Consequently, the focus of the Internet of Things QA testing should be to ensure every aspect of the IoT and mesh architecture performs as desired.

# IoT Governance: With the expansion of the IoT space, a proper setup for governance, including an IoT testing framework, should be instituted. This is to ensure appropriate behavior in the generation, storage, deletion, and usage of IoT-related data. IoT governance would entail device audits, control of devices, firmware updates, and the usage of information delivered, among others. CIOs must educate their organizations on issues related to IoT governance.

Conclusion 

The Internet of Things will continue to expand and play an important role for business enterprises in areas such as data mining, analysis, and management, decision-making, privacy, security, and others. CIOs must make their enteprises ready to leverage the opportunities offered by the IoT as well as set up proper architectures, including IoT security testing, to mitigate any associated risks.

Read more…

The Internet of Things is one of the technologies making yesterday’s science fiction the reality of today. It will act as a force multiplier for digitization and can potentially transform the world into a smart one - smart cities, smart vehicles, smart manufacturing, smart homes, and many others. According to IDC, spending on IoT by businesses and other entities is going to reach $1 trillion in 2022. Further, out of the projected connected devices of 29 billion by 2022, around 18 billion are expected to be related to IoT. And the data generated by these devices will be to the tune of 73.1 zettabytes by 2025.

In other words, ignoring the penetration of IoT across domains and not investing in its vast sweep could be detrimental to the competitiveness of business enterprises in the future. Even though the IoT will continue on its upward trajectory in use cases and device numbers, enterprises should take into account the challenges related to interoperability and security. Let us discuss the top IoT predictions that IoT testing services, or for that matter, the CIOs of enterprises, should acknowledge and incorporate in their value chain.

Top IoT Forecasts for CIOs to Recognize

As a smart technology, the Internet of Things is going to change the landscape of the digital world. The top IoT forecasts for the years to come are mentioned below:

# AI-based IoT data analysis: With IoT being adopted as a frontline technology by most organizations, there will be a need to gather, store, process, and analyze huge amounts of data generated by it. This is where AI-based data analysis will take over from traditional analysis wherein data mined by IoT devices will be analyzed for known patterns to draw insights about various aspects of an organization. AI is going to be applied to a host of IoT-generated data in the form of still images, video, speech, text, and network traffic activities. This should drive the CIOs of business enterprises to implement the necessary skills and tools to leverage AI in their IoT testing approach.

# IoT with legal, social, and ethical dimensions: With the increased adoption of IoT across business segments, a wide range of social, ethical, and legal issues may come to the fore. These may include privacy, regulatory compliance, algorithmic bias, and ownership of data, among others. In fact, the success of any IoT solution should not be based on its technical prowess or effectiveness alone, but on social acceptability as well. Hence, CIOs should review their corporate strategy, IoT and AI systems, and key algorithms by external agencies for any potential bias. In doing so, they may include external IoT testing services to not only validate the technical aspects of such systems but their social, ethical, and legal dimensions as well.

# Data broking and infonomics: According to a Gartner survey, businesses are going to include the buying and selling of IoT data as an essential part of their strategy. As per the theory of infonomics, the monetization of IoT data will be treated as a strategic asset by businesses and included in their accounts. CIOs should educate their staff on the opportunities and risks pertaining to data broking and set the appropriate IT policies, including incorporating mandatory IoT testing in the value chain.

# Transition from Intelligent Edge to Intelligent Mesh: The transition from cloud to edge architectures in the IoT space is underway and is likely to give way to a more unstructured architecture in the form of a dynamic mesh. The mesh architectures will lead to more intelligent, responsive, and flexible IoT systems, but with additional complexities. As a result, CIOs must prepare their organisations for the impact of mesh architectures on IoT systems. Consequently, the focus of the Internet of Things QA testing should be to ensure every aspect of the IoT and mesh architecture performs as desired.

# IoT Governance: With the expansion of the IoT space, a proper setup for governance, including an IoT testing framework, should be instituted. This is to ensure appropriate behavior in the generation, storage, deletion, and usage of IoT-related data. IoT governance would entail device audits, control of devices, firmware updates, and the usage of information delivered, among others. CIOs must educate their organizations on issues related to IoT governance.

Conclusion 

The Internet of Things will continue to expand and play an important role for business enterprises in areas such as data mining, analysis, and management, decision-making, privacy, security, and others. CIOs must make their enteprises ready to leverage the opportunities offered by the IoT as well as set up proper architectures, including IoT security testing, to mitigate any associated risks.

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Widespread adoption of IoT has led to organizations pushing the boundaries of what’s possible using the technology. Monitoring of operational assets and IT/OT integration, while extremely valuable, has evolved into generating actionable insights and true autonomous machine-to-machine (m2m) interaction. From autonomous vehicles to predictive maintenance to remote patient monitoring to the metaverse, real-time is the key, requiring not only high-speed data aggregation, but also complex analytics on that same data as soon as the data is generated.

While advances in network technology have significantly reduced information flow latency, managing transactional data and analyzing it in real-time continues to be a major challenge. One strategy that is leading the charge to address this is Hybrid Transactional Analytical Processing (HTAP) powered by in-memory computing.

Two types of IoT processing – Analytical and Transactional

In the past, many IoT implementations and use cases were unidirectional. Streaming data coming in from all sorts of sensors and devices was pushed at high speeds to large data stores. This data was then analyzed using typical big data analytics technologies to draw relevant conclusions for appropriate human intervention.

For true m2m interaction, however, the communication must be bidirectional between sensors and devices, and the processing must be real-time to support decisions and subsequent actions – all in a matter of milliseconds.

Consider an example use case: managing an end-to-end protein manufacturing process at a biotech firm’s manufacturing plant using IoT. To enforce process quality control and avoid the possibility of losing an entire batch of protein, the system must continuously receive data from various sensors and controllers and analyze that data to make decisions and trigger control actions – all in real-time during the ongoing manufacturing process.

For the biotech firm, this bidirectional, real-time communication and action can save an entire batch worth millions of dollars. For other use cases, such as autonomous vehicles, the stakes are even higher. Lives are at stake, and a single millisecond delay could prove catastrophic.

HTAP: Simultaneous transaction processing and analytics

These types of “transactional” IoT use cases require not only writing or persisting data at high speeds, but also processing every single incoming piece of information, analyzing it contextually, making a decision and initiating an action, all in real-time.

This is where data stores with HTAP capabilities come into play. HTAP creates that centralized, highly scalable data storage and processing tier that can process transactions and also perform inline analytics on that rapidly changing transactional data. In the case of the protein manufacturing process, the data coming in from any sensor is contextualized with data coming from other sensors at that exact time, analyzed based on an intelligent anomaly detection model, for example, leading to an appropriate decision. This decision leads the IoT system to trigger an action that is then initiated on the appropriate part of the manufacturing process to bring it back within the overall process control limits.

This type of automated process control would not be possible without the aggregation and analysis of data, execution of some complex and intelligent anomaly detection model and then initiating an action based on that intelligence, all done in real-time within the transactional scope of that ongoing highly sensitive manufacturing process.

HTAP and in-memory computing

Currently, the most effective way to deploy HTAP is with in-memory computing. In-memory computing platforms are typically deployed on a cluster of commodity servers, either on-premises, in public or private clouds, or on hybrid architectures. By pooling the available memory and compute from across the cluster, the in-memory computing platform can store vast amounts of data in-memory and use massively parallel processing (MPP) to deliver up to 1,000x faster performance for applications that were built on disk-based databases.

Analyzing the data in the same in-memory computing cluster where it is being written eliminates the movement of data over the network between the traditional OLTP and OLAP systems. This is really the key to enabling real-time, “transalytic” processing and decision-making. Further, the computing cluster can scale horizontally to petabytes of in-memory data, and some in-memory computing platforms offer multi-tiered computing to allow seamless processing of data cached in memory or stored on disk.

As companies in a wide range of industries continue to explore the potential of IoT, the demand to implement real-time, bidirectional M2M use cases will soar. HTAP is a proven and cost-effective strategy for making the solutions to these use cases a reality.

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There have been various innovations that have caused a stir in the healthcare business. As we have Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Augmented Reality technologies. As a result, you see their applications in every field or business, however, some of them are just overhyped or gimmicks.

However, the Internet of Things (IoT) is the most thriving technology, and IoT in healthcare has brought in a plethora of applications that are more than simply gimmicks and are actually pretty beneficial. Aside from the healthcare industry, there is a high need for IoT developers in general. Businesses in a variety of industries, including healthcare, are investing heavily in IoT app development. Let's take a look at how IoT is progressing in the healthcare business.

 

The benefits of IoT in healthcare are:

1) Simultaneous Reporting and Monitoring

Real-time monitoring through linked devices has the potential to save a million lives in the case of a medical emergency such as heart failure, diabetes, asthma attacks, and so on. Connected devices can acquire relevant medical and health-related data by monitoring the state in real-time using a smart medical gadget connected to a smartphone app.

 The linked IoT gadget captures and transmits health data such as blood pressure, oxygen, and blood sugar levels, as well as weight and ECGs. The data is kept in the cloud and can be shared with an authorized individual according to the sharing access authorization.

 Furthermore, the mentioned individual may be a physician, an insurance company, a participating health firm, or an external consultant, and it will allow them to check into the situation.

2)  Data Assortment and Analysis

Managing a large volume of data is not as simple as it seems for healthcare practitioners. Data acquired in real-time by IoT-enabled mobile devices may be evaluated and separated using IoT-powered mobility solutions.

This will lower the amount of raw data collected while also enabling crucial healthcare analytics and data-driven insights, which will eventually reduce mistakes and speed up decision-making.

3.)Tracking and Alerts

In life-threatening situations, real-time tracking and alerts can be a lifesaver by protecting a crucial patient's health with continual notifications and real-time alerts for proper monitoring, analysis, and diagnosis. IoT-powered healthcare mobility solutions provide real-time tracking, alerting, and monitoring.

This allows for hands-on treatments, more precision, and appropriate intervention by doctors, thereby enhancing the overall patient care delivery results.

4.) Remote Medical Assistance

In the case of an emergency, users may use smart smartphone applications to call a doctor who is thousands of kilometers away. With mobility solutions in healthcare, doctors may check on patients and diagnose illnesses while they are on the road.

Furthermore, various IoT-based healthcare delivery chains are planning to construct machines that may administer medications based on a patient's prescription and ailment-related data available via connected devices. IoT will improve hospital patient care. As a result, people's healthcare costs will be reduced.

 

What are the challenges of IoT in healthcare?

1) Data Security and Privacy:

Data Security and Privacy are two of the most serious concerns that IoT faces. IoT-enabled mobile devices collect data in real-time, however, the majority of them do not follow data protocols and standards.

There is a great deal of uncertainty around data ownership and regulation. As a result, data held within IoT-enabled devices are vulnerable to data theft, making the data more vulnerable to hackers who can hack into the system and jeopardize sensitive health information.

Fraudulent health claims and the production of phony IDs for purchasing and selling pharmaceuticals are two instances of how IoT device data is being misused.

2) Data Overload and Accuracy:

It is difficult to total information for essential bits of knowledge and inquiry due to the inconsistency of information and correspondence protocols. IoT collects information in large quantities, and for proper information inquiry, the information should be isolated in parts without overburdening and with accurate accuracy for better results. Furthermore, overburdening of information may have an effect on the dynamic cycle in the accommodation area in the long term.

3) Cost

This point is probably not surprising to you. Costs are one of the most significant challenges when considering IoT application development for medical services flexible setups. In any event, the costs are well worth the effort if the IoT implementation addresses a genuine need.

While establishing an IoT application will cost you a lot of money and assets, the benefits will be significant when your company saves time and labor, all while further expanding the business processes, providing additional income streams, and opening up more business opportunities through IoT.

Applications of IoT in healthcare

The growth of IoT is fascinating for everyone because of its diverse range of applications in numerous industries. It has numerous applications in healthcare. Here are some notable Internet of Things (IoT) applications in healthcare: 

IoT applications in healthcare are intended not just for healthcare facilities, but also for patients! In a nutshell, IoT in healthcare accomplishes the following tasks:

  • reducing the length of time people have to wait at the emergency department
  • Keeping track of patients, employees, and inventory
  • Improving Drug Management
  • ensuring crucial hardware availability

IoT has also offered a number of wearables and devices that have made patients' lives easier. These are the gadgets listed below.

Wearables:

Nowadays, wearables are Bluetooth-enabled, allowing them to connect with your smartphone.

It gives you the ability to filter, equalize, and layer real-world sounds. Doppler Labs is the best illustration of this.

Ingestible sensors:

Ingestible sensors are truly a miracle of contemporary science. These are pill-sized sensors that monitor the medicine in our bodies and alert us if any anomalies are detected.

These sensors can aid diabetic patients by reducing symptoms and providing an early warning of significant health risks. One such example is Proteus Digital Health.

Moodables:

Moodables are mood-enhancing items that help us feel better throughout the day. It may seem like science fiction, but it's not that far off. Thync and Halo Neurosciences have already begun working on it and have made significant progress. Moodables are head-mounted wearables that deliver low-intensity electricity to the brain, therefore elevating our mood.

Computer Vision Technology:

PC Vision Technology, in conjunction with Artificial Intelligence, has resulted in drone innovation, which intends to replicate visual understanding in order to empower dynamic in view of it.

Drones like Skydio employ PC vision technologies to detect obstacles and navigate around them. This invention has also greatly aided externally disadvantaged folks in exploring effectively.

IoT-fueled gadgets lessen a significant part of the manual work. For example, a specialist needs to utilize IoT gadgets during patient graphing. Here, IoT sensors can gauge a wide range of od information, for example, circulatory strain, internal heat level, and so forth, and diagram everything into an application associated with estimation gadgets through IoT.

Furthermore, it makes the patient's information promptly available for audit. Such an IoT application could set aside to 15 hours/seven day stretch of a specialist's manual outlining.

 

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Automation has become the buzzword these days, with business enterprises going about adopting newer technologies to be competitive and profitable. The Internet of Things, or IoT, is one such technology that has the potential to transform the way we perceive and act upon things - such as driving a car using smart IoT technology. The technology has been adopted on a large scale, especially in industrial applications, as a means to digitally transform processes and derive a host of benefits. These include reducing effort and cost, achieving speed, accuracy, higher productivity, and efficiency. The growing fascination for such devices is driving the market crazy with a valuation of $520 billion.  Furthermore, IoT technology is expected to receive up to $1 trillion in investments by 2022 (Source: research.aimultiple.com).

All said and done, the downside to the breakneck speed at which IoT is being adopted across the board is the neglect of security considerations. Business enterprises, in their zeal to adopt IoT technology to drive digital transformation, do not always give the security of such devices and the network on which they operate enough attention. This leaves these devices with vulnerabilities, which have the potential to be exploited by cybercriminals to cause data breaches with dire consequences for all stakeholders. Let us understand the IoT and how to strengthen its security.

Understanding IoT 

The Internet of Things comprises everyday devices that are interconnected through the internet or other wireless networks and can be controlled remotely. Everyday devices are fitted with sensors and microchips that can send or receive data over the internet. This creates the possibility of these devices being controlled remotely. The use of IoT in physical areas like homes, cars, offices, and even cities has a transformational effect in terms of turning them smart. For instance, your alarm clock can read the calendar and sets itself up to buzz at the right time.

Why is IoT security important? 

The world is poised to move into a “smart” ecosystem where automation, in all likelihood, is going to change our lives for the better. However, given that the internet or any wireless network is the carrier for IoT “signals”, cybercriminals can hack into the devices or networks and cause havoc. For instance, hackers can penetrate the IoT network of any company to cause system downtime or spy on homeowners to garner crucial information. Since billions of devices are connected to the IoT network, it is important to develop and comply with security standards to prevent tampering or breaches. Let us understand how IoT security testing can help in establishing such a secure ecosystem.

Protecting IoT devices and networks from cyber attacks

As companies develop new products with IoT capabilities, consumers are simply lapping them up. However, this increases the possibility of cyber-attacks on such devices. Let us understand how the Internet of Things QA testing for security can prevent such attacks.

IoT penetration testing: In this type of IoT testing methodology, the QA testers try to penetrate the IoT network and devices by exploiting the inherent vulnerabilities with full knowledge of the management. With IoT penetration testing, QA testers check the security of such devices and find out the vulnerabilities as they continue to operate in the real world. It helps stakeholders understand the types of vulnerabilities or glitches existing in the IoT system and how they can be exploited by real threat actors. After knowing the vulnerabilities through IoT security testing, the loopholes are plugged, thereby strengthening the security of the IoT system and making it virtually impregnable.

Threat modeling: This IoT testing approach helps determine the threat model for the IoT system and how it can be breached. For instance, if an IoT-enabled camera is installed to monitor a house or spy on people within a specific distance, it can be breached by a hacker to gain access to the images captured by the camera. With threat modeling, the vulnerability that allowed the hacker to gain access to the camera is eliminated.

Firmware analysis: Firmware is a type of software that is used in embedded devices like sensors to execute a dedicated function. It can be found on devices such as routers, smart appliances, or medical devices. As with any other software, firmware can contain vulnerabilities or bugs that can be exploited by cybercriminals. Firmware analysis is a type of IoT testing approach that looks for security issues such as buffer overflows, backdoors, and others.

Best practices to secure the IoT devices or systems

No matter how robust the security of IoT systems is, if the people operating the devices are not thorough with the security protocols, hackers can gain entry into the systems. The best practices to be followed to keep the IoT systems secure are listed below:

  • Change default credentials frequently and use strong passwords
  • Implement a VPN with strong encryption to transmit and store data
  • Perform IoT security testing frequently
  • Change default router settings
  • Disconnect devices when not in use
  • Do not use Universal Plug and Play
  • Update firmware regularly

Conclusion  

With the rapid growth of IoT systems, businesses should turn their focus to securing these devices from any unauthorized access. They should be thoroughly assessed to identify and mitigate any security vulnerabilities in the code. Even though IoT technology has the potential to transform our lives for the better, it is critical to understand that it can have security risks as well. It is only by implementing IoT device testing solutions in the value chain that businesses can ensure the protection of data from falling into the wrong hands.  

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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The construction industry is among the many under pressure for optimisation and sustainable growth, driven by the development of smart urban cities. Construction will account for about USD 12.9 trillion global output by 2022 and is predicted to grow globally by 3.1% by 2030. Its demand and spending are growing rapidly in an attempt to answer the need for housing of the fast-growing global population.

 

However, the industry faces unique challenges on a global scale. Despite continual stable growth underperformance, constant project rework, labour shortage and lack of adopted digital solutions cause production delays and a worrying 1% growth in productivity.

The construction industry is one of the slowest growing sectors for IoT adoption and digitalization. To put this in numbers:

  • Only 18% of the construction companies use mobile apps for project data and collaboration.
  • Nearly 50% of the companies in the field spend 1% or less on technology
  • 95% of all data captured in construction goes unused
  • 28% of the UK construction firms point out lack of on-site information as the biggest challenge for productivity

And yet

  • 70% of the contractors trust that the advance of technology and software solutions, in particular, can improve their work.

To sum up the data, the construction industry is open to digitalization and IoT, but the advancement is slow and difficult, due to the specific needs of the field. When we talk about technology implementation on the construction site, IoT can help with project data collection, environment condition monitoring, equipment tracking and remote management, as well as safety monitoring with wearables.

However, the implementation of IoT for construction sites calls for careful planning and calculation of costs, as well as trust in the technology. Here is where private LTE networks can come into play and help construction companies take initial steps into advancing their digitalization.

What is Private LTE?

Long-term Evolution or LTE is a broadband technology that allows companies to vertically scale solutions for easier management, improved latency, range, speed and costs. LTE is a connectivity standard used for cases with multiple devices with multiple bands and for global technologies. For construction sites, this would mean LTE can connect all devices on-site, including heavy machinery, mobile devices, trackers, sensors and anything else that requires a stable uninterrupted connection.

LTE requires companies to connect to an MNO and depend on local infrastructure to run the network, much like Wi-Fi. Private LTE, on the other hand, allows companies to create and operate an independent wireless network that covers all their business facilities. Private LTE is often used to reduce congestion, add a layer of security and reduce cost for locations with no existing infrastructure, where constructions sites fall into.

Why Private LTE for construction?

When it comes to the particular needs of construction companies, private LTE offers the following benefits, over public LTE and Wi-Fi.

  • Network ownership and autonomy

Private LTE can be seen as creating a connectivity island on the construction site, where all company devices and machinery can be monitored and controlled by the company network team. Owning the network increases flexibility because businesses do not need to rely on local providers for making changes, creating additional secure networks or moving devices from one network to another.

Construction sites do not often come with suitable networks in place, so putting your own one up whenever needed is just as important as being able to take it down quickly. With private LTE, construction companies can do it as they see fit.

  • Cost

Private LTE can optimise the cost for running a construction site, not just by providing stable connectivity for IoT implementation, but also from a pure network running point. For example, Wi-Fi is often not sufficient for serving large construction sites and may require a number of repeaters to cover the area, which increases the running cost. Private LTE can run on a single tower and can be combined with CBRS for further cost-reduction. This makes it ideal for locations that would incur high infrastructure installation costs.

  • Control and security

With private LTE, companies can control network access, preventing unwanted users or outside network interference. This is critical for securing the project data and device access. Private LTE allows for setting up specific levels of security access for different on-site members.

Network ownership also allows teams to use real-time data to make timely decisions on consumption, device control and management, as well as react in case of emergency. This can further help increase the on-site safety of the team.

  • Performance

Compared to public LTE or Wi-Fi, private LTE networks are simply better performing when it comes to hundreds of devices. Because the network is private, it allows the usage of connectivity management platforms for control of individual SIM cards (connected devices), traffic optimisation and control. Public LTE and Wi-Fi networks are often not equipped to handle multiple devices on the site, let alone underground projects, where there are barriers to the network. Uninterrupted performance is also key for real-time data and employee safety at high-risk construction sites.

Private LTE is a technology widely applicable for manufacturing, mining, cargo and freight, as well as for utility, hospitals and smart cities in general. It is considered the stepping stone for 5G implementation, because of its capacity and it is agreed to be the gateway for future-proofing network access.

While the implementation of NB-IoT is progressing, we at JT IoT have already developed solutions suitable for future IoT connectivity. To learn more about private LTE, watch our deep dive into the topic with Pod Group. 

Originally posted here.

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In the age of hyper-connectivity, the Internet of Things (IoT) technology has provided countless innovators the opportunity to build software and hardware for different purposes — from medical smart devices and manufacturing to smart cities and homes. 

According to Statista, 15.9 billion connected devices will be connected worldwide by 2030. The global IoT spending will reach $1.1 trillion the same year. However, the growing number of IoT apps has also increased the amount spent by businesses to recall defective IoT devices.

You see, developing an IoT device is the only step towards ensuring its longevity. It is also essential to conduct proper QA testing to ensure the IoT software is strong enough to withstand security threats, performance malfunction, and connectivity issues. 

Your IoT device should work collaboratively and deliver value to the business as intended at the end of the day. In this article, we will discuss the definition, benefits, process, and types of IoT testing. But first, let us start with the basics: 

What is IoT testing? 

The general IoT network connectivity comprises four core layers, including the physical layer (sensors and controllers), network layer (gateways and communication units), data management layer (local or cloud services at the backend), and the application layer (software for user interaction). 

Since data is heavily transmitted from one object to another over the Internet in the ecosystem, it is vital to verify that your electronic devices can exchange sensitive information easily before the market launch and throughout their lifecycle. 

That is why all successful IoT businesses rely on automation, penetration, and performance testing tools to spot any defect in the IoT device before it reaches the hands of end customers.  

IoT testing is the practice of conducting QA tests to validate the performance, minimize security issues, and boost the functionality of an IoT device. It broadly revolves around device networks, operating systems, security, analytics, platforms, and standards. 

QA testers trace and associate software releases and cycles, test cases and scripts, look for defects, test executions, and gather other requirements. The complexity and variability of IoT testing make planning a crucial aspect of the process. 

The significant benefits of IoT testing 

QA engineers and developers can provide better  service offerings by employing IoT automation testing in their general practices with the right plan and purpose in place. These are the benefits that they can plan to see with IoT testing: 

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1. Faster time-to-market 

IoT testing ensures that businesses can launch their safe and approved IoT products in the market by leveraging automation. 

2. Business future-proofing 

IoT testing offers an integrated approach for validating IoT platforms' practical and non-functional testing requirements. The practice future-proofs the business by enabling higher interoperability and security with performance testing tools. In the end, you can deliver safer solutions and, therefore, be a better prospect for consumers. 

3. New business opportunities 

Testing the IoT solutions speeds up innovation with less risk and without delaying the response time or using too many resources. With set testing processes, businesses can experiment much more freely with IoT products in the market with minimal human intervention. 

IoT testing framework 

Given the complexity of IoT solutions, check all layers separately, verify the entire system's operation, and determine the interoperability level of several layers. Please refer to a robust testing framework to ensure the testing is done properly across all software versions. Some fundamental features that should be a part of the framework are listed below: 

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1. Performance testing 

It is essential to strategically approach the development and implementation of an IoT testing plan. That is why measure the IoT app's performance metrics such as throughput, CPU utilization, latency, and so on. Validate the stability of the entire app's functioning under changing operational and network conditions such as intermittent failures. 

2. Security testing 

Testing how safe and secure an IoT app functions is paramount. After all, many users access a massive amount of data all the time. You must, therefore, have data privacy controls and validate users via authentication as a part of your security testing processes. 

3. Compatibility testing 

Multiple devices are connected in a typical IoT ecosystem with different software and hardware configurations. Please ensure your IoT product is highly compatible with different tools and platforms for its smooth functioning. 

Use data recorders, for instance, to check out how the recorded data plays across different device end-points automatically and freely. 

4. Device interoperability 

IoT testing ensures that the end customers have a state-of-the-art user experience across multiple channels such as web apps and mobile devices. 

Visualize the required use cases and arrange the testing process. For instance, all layers should be checked for security and functioning separately. Then deploy APIs to review the application and data management layers. Test the physical and network layers for compatibility. 

Seven types of testing tools 

To execute a wide range of IoT tests at the staging phase, use the right automation, visualization, simulation, and measurement tools. Here are the different IoT testing tools that can make a ton of difference to how you approach the process: 

1. Device or protocol simulators 

As the name suggests, these IoT testing tools are often simulated in large numbers and configured to map the required real-time scenarios. The simulators are standards-compliant and support numerous IoT protocols in format testing processes. 

2. Record and playback test automation tools 

These tools are multi-purpose as QA testing teams find them useful in many test scenarios. The assessment involves recording a user's actions and matching objects behind the scenes to identify which units of code are routinely used and how. In this type of testing, a coded test script file is generated, which the QA engineers replay as is. 

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3. Mobile testing tools 

These IoT testing tools offer automated functional mobile testing, replicating customer experience and ensuring the IoT app works as expected. 

4. API testing tools 

Integrate an automated API testing tool with your continuous integration pipeline for improving your IoT app's codebase quality. Detect bugs early on in the IoT app development lifecycle with end-user application testing. 

5. Visualization tools 

The real-time validation of the IoT application is difficult and time-consuming. Introducing IoT data visualization tools can help finish the development process faster with minimal dependence in the real-time environment. 

That is because they initiate the cost-friendly and timely execution of compatibility tests without making any hefty investments in the hardware, browsers, platform services, operating systems, and so on. 

6. Automated deployment tools 

Automation testing tools help create virtual machines on the cloud or on-premise for rapidly commissioning managed services and configuring and deploying customized applications and services. Improve speed, productivity, and effectiveness of quality over execution. 

7. Security testing tools 

These can be categorized as static code analysis, threat modeling, and run-time threat-inducing. Unearth vulnerabilities, prioritize them, and offer recommendations on how to fix them with the help of security testing tools. 

The ultimate IoT testing process 

An IoT setup deploys various software testing approaches that are slightly different from the regular QA practices for validating IoT apps. Here is what a typical IoT testing process looks like: 

1. Lay the groundwork with the help of QA engineers 

Assign a QA testing team while the specifications for the IoT application are being decided. Having them on board at the beginning will help them choose how often the IoT development team will need to collaborate with the QA engineers to prioritize relevant test cases, enable regressing testing, and efficiently manage defects. 

They will also confirm the IoT testing risks and design an overall risk mitigation plan for your IoT app development project. Taking the QA team's help ensures proper test automation frameworks and configuration to address quality issues and whatnot. 

2. Prepare for IoT app testing 

Even when the QA team has designed a comprehensive testing strategy, they are still required to regularly revise and update the test artifacts. It would help if you also had a balanced combination of manual and automated testing to make sure the IoT app is error-free and to avoid data- and time-intensive repetitive test cases execution. 

Prepare for conducting different types of testing, including conducting usability testing, simulating sensors, verifying data integrity, determining the end-to-end workflows of the entire IoT application, and flawless communication between various IoT app components with their tech stack compatibility. 

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3. Select a vendor for outsourced IoT testing 

If you do not wish to carry out the function in-house, consider outsourcing as it proves to be more cost-effective than hiring a full-time staff. Plus, you have access to a greater talent pool and technological expertise. IoT testing becomes hassle-free. To select a fitting vendor of automation testing tools, please do the following: 

  • Shortlist vendors with successful IoT testing projects in your sector. 
  • Create a comprehensive request for proposal which includes your IoT solution's specific requirements. 
  • Consider their existing tech stack and human resources, so you do not get stuck in the middle of running tests. 
  • Understand their approach to an IoT testing strategy, testing toolkit, the planned test automation, and so on. 

4. Launch your IoT tests 

Once you have figured out your resources, it is time to design test cases and build test scripts. Check the end-to-end functioning of the IoT product by creating an IoT test lab with the help of service visualization tools. These labs serve as the digital portfolio for experimenting and simulating real-time experiences that fuel more innovative automation testing tools. 

Over to you 

IoT solutions can be challenging to develop, manage and test given the multiple components and interactions between them. It is, therefore, necessary to monitor the performance of the app more closely with automation testing tools. A thorough testing process ensures a quality IoT product and high customer satisfaction. So, how do you plan to get started with IoT testing?

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The concepts of AI and ML have been widely discussed and these concepts are also inspiring many entrepreneurs to invest in such products. This huge amount of investment brings a huge opportunity for young people to learn these concepts and get a full-time job in the same field.

To help you to get a full-time job in this field, we bring the top best concepts to learn before getting started with AI and machine learning. But before that, let's learn about the concepts of Artificial intelligence and machine learning.

About AI

AI stands for artificial intelligence which is expected to replace current man-force with accuracy. There are two main concepts of Artificial Intelligence and these concepts are Machine learning and deep learning. Both of these concepts are used to predict an out based on the data it has. Many big organizations have been implementing these concepts over the years successfully for the finance, gaming, technology, and image processing industries. In the typical machine learning product, you will train a model with a huge amount of data. Once the model is fully trained, the model will be able to decide on its own. A deep learning model contains a huge amount of data while the machine learning model contains comparatively less data but it is also equally amazing.

Below are the top best concepts that you must learn before learning all other AI/ML concepts.

1) Binary translation

A binary number is nothing but a two-bit number that contains just zeros and ones. All the advanced and traditional electronics systems understand just binary numbers. These systems cannot understand any other language apart from the binary. For that reason, it becomes really important for the software engineer to learn and understand the concepts of the binary conversion tool.

Along with these concepts, you can also learn about other numbering systems like hexadecimal, decimal, and octal numbers. Among these numbers, decimal numbers are the easiest numbers to learn and understand. Most apps and software that requires human involvement, need to be written in decimal number in the back-end and binary numbers on the front-end.

2) Programming

Most of the Machine learning and deep learning apps are written in the Python programming language. Though there are a lot of ready-made libraries and frameworks available in the Python programming language, you need basic programming skills to implement this framework on your project. You can start learning these concepts from the c language and then start learning the python programming language.

3) Probability in maths

The math concepts are not that important for programming but they can be helpful in machine learning and deep learning concepts especially probability concepts. In deep learning, you need to deal with a lot of data, and to search from this data you need to develop a tool that implements probability applications for a faster search.

So, these are the top three concepts that you must learn before developing your first AI/ML app to get the best job in the field. Do share your thoughts on this subject.

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An AI based approach increases accuracy and can even make the impossible possible.
 
What is an Outlier?
 
Put simply, an outlier is a piece of data or observation that differs drastically from a given norm.
 
In the image above, the red fish is an outlier. Clearly differing by color, but also by size, shape, and more obviously direction. As such, the analysis of detecting outliers in data fall into two categories: univariate, and multivariate
  • Univariate: considering a single variable
  • Multivariate: considering multiple variables
 
Outlier Detection in Industrial IoT
 
In Industrial IoT use cases, outlier detection can be instrumental in specific use cases such as understanding the health of your machine. Instead of looking at characteristics of a fish like above, we are looking at characteristics of a machine via data such as sensor readings.
 
The goal is to learn what normal operation looks like where outliers are abnormal activity indicative of a future problem.
 
Statistical Approach to Outlier Detection
Statistics - Normal Distribution 
Statistical/probability based approaches date back centuries. You may recall back the bell curve. The values of your dataset plot to a distribution. In simplest terms, you calculate the mean and standard deviation of that distribution. You then can plot the location of x standard deviations from the mean and anything that falls beyond that is an outlier.
 
A simple example to explore using this approach is outside air temperature. Looking at the low temperature in Boston for the month of January from 2008-2018 we find an average temperature of ~23 degrees F with a standard deviation of ~9.62 degrees. Plotting out 2 standard deviations results in the following.
 
 
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Interpreting the chart above, any temperature above the gray line or below the yellow can be considered outside the range of normal...or an outlier.
 
Why do we need AI?
If we just showed that you can determine outliers using simple statistics, then why do we need AI at all? The answer depends on the type of outlier analysis.
 
Why AI for Univariate Analysis?
In the example above, we successfully analyzed outliers in weather looking at a single variable: temperature.
 
So, why should we complicate things by introducing AI to the equation? The answer has to do with the distribution of your data. You can run univariate analysis using statistical measures, but in order for the results to be accurate, it is assumed that the distribution of your data is "normal". In other words, it needs to fit to the shape of a bell curve (like the left image below).
 
However, in the real world, and specifically in industrial use cases, the resulting sensor data is not perfectly normal (like the right image below).
 6 ways to test for a Normal Distribution — which one to use? | by Joos  Korstanje | Towards Data Science
As a result, statistical analysis on a non-normal dataset would result in more false positives and false negatives.
 
The Need for AI
AI-based methods on the other hand, do not require a normal distribution and finds patterns in the data that result in much higher accuracy. In the case of the weather in Boston, getting the forecast slightly wrong does not have a huge impact. However, in industries such as rail, oil and gas, and industrial equipment, trust in the accuracy of your results has a long lasting impact. An impact that can only be achieved by AI.
 
Why AI for Multivariate Analysis?
The case for AI in a multivariate analysis is a bit more straight forward. Effectively, when we are looking at a single variable we can easily plot the results on a plane such as the temperature chart or the normal and non-normal distribution charts above.
 
However, if we are analyzing multiple points, such as the current, voltage and wattage of a motor, or vibration over 3 axis, or the return temp and discharge temp of an HVAC system, plotting and analyzing with statistics has its limitations. Just visualizing the plot becomes impossible for a human as we go from a single plane to hyperplanes as shown below.
 
MSRI | Hyperplane arrangements and application
 
The Need for AI
For multivariate analysis, visual inspection starts to go beyond human capabilities while technical analysis goes beyond statistical capabilities. Instead, AI can be utilized to find patterns in the underlying data in order to learn normal operation and adequately monitor for outliers. In other words, for multivariate analysis AI starts to make the impossible possible.
 
Summary
Statistics and probability has been around far longer than anyone reading this post. However, not all data is created equal and in the world of industrial IoT, statistical techniques have crucial limitations.
 
AI-based techniques go beyond these limitations helping to reduce false positives/negatives and often times making robust analysis possible for the first time.
 
At Elipsa, we build simple, fast and flexible AI for IoT. Get free access to our Community Edition to start integrating machine learning into your applications.
 
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Is it not amazing how we all started living in a hyperconnected world without even realizing it? It all started with internet access on smartphones. Now we have digital assistants that can turn on the lights and set the preferred temperature at home even before we arrive. We can work, have fun, and socialize through our phones and connected devices. Now the cities are embracing advanced technology to inter-connect various functions and improve the usage of infrastructure, energy, utilities and public services to elevate the quality of living. This digital phenomenon that we are experiencing in our day to day lives is the Internet of Things (IoT).

What is IoT?

Internet of things is popularly known as IoT. IoT refers to a hyperconnected digital ecosystem where human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction is enabled through the internet network. The machines, humans, objects are allotted Unique Identifiers (UIDs) through which they can interact, perform within the digital ecosystem.

For example, a sensor installed in the farm may alert the farmer when soil moisture is not within the normal range or anything else that requires the farmer’s urgent attention. Similarly, a chip in the car’s tire may alert the driver when the pressure is low. This may save him from a flat tire. Or it can be as simple as your refrigerator telling you to bring milk home when you run out of milk.

In the IoT universe, everything is assigned an Internet Protocol (IP) address. This IP enables them to communicate and transfer data they acquire from their surroundings using an IoT gateway or devices.

What Does the Future Look Like?

A projection by Statista suggests that the market of IoT will breach the benchmark of 1 trillion USD in 2030. It indicates more than 100% growth just within a decade. The study further suggests that the number of IoT connected devices worldwide will triple during this period. IoT technology and devices will be consumed in almost all industry verticals and consumer markets.

Statista forecasts that by 2030, the world will have more than 8 billion IoT devices. IT will be mainly used in electricity, gas, steam, AC, water supply, waste management, retail, wholesale, transportation and storage and government functioning. Currently, smartphones are the most used devices for IoT, but the future will see several innovative devices that will transform the experience of living.

IoT will usher in an era of connected vehicles, payment terminals and automation that will reduce human intervention in the day-to-day process and elevate the quality of life by creating an efficiently connected world.

How will IoT Impact Businesses?

An assessment from GlobalData’s Thematic Research indicates that giants like Tesla, Amazon, Qualcomm, Samsung have realized the importance of IoT way before the others and they are best positioned to take optimum advantage of this technology especially in the automotive sector.

Statista’s report suggests that businesses across the globe are embracing IoT to increase cyber security, reduce operational costs and improve efficiency. In 2019 only, 120 billion USD were spent on IT security. Worldwide governments have also increased their spending after smart city initiatives and IoT technology.

These developments indicate that IoT is a major emerging trend. The companies that will match steps with the changing trends will have a competitive advantage over others. If you own a business, the time to look for an IoT solution company is NOW.

What to Expect?

  • A brighter, environment-friendly future:

While reducing human intervention and providing enhanced personal autonomy, IoT companies are also working towards finding sustainable, environment-friendly solutions. Several IoT companies are working towards creating a future with minimized waste and optimized use of energy. This is done by predicting maintenance activity, reducing downtime and finding ways to reuse and recycle. In smart cities, waste management is a segment wherein IoT is greatly contributing.

  • Better security:

From your baby monitor to your digital locker to your car, everything will be connected through IoT devices for an enhanced living experience and better security. At present, many IoT devices such as wearables do not have strong security measures in place. The more connected world is also prone to cyber attacks from many directions. The IoT companies are actively working to enhance the safety and security of IoT devices. This suggests that in near future, we will be living in a more secure digitally interconnected world.

  • Confluence of technologies:

IoT connects people, devices, systems but when it is combined with other emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), it can work wonders. For example, AI can provide valuable insights from the data collected by IoT devices. Without it, the data is of no use. The tech companies are merging IoT with various technologies like AI, ML (Machine Learning) to get actionable insights to derive optimum benefits.  

  • Decentralized network:

More connected devices also mean more pressure on the cloud infrastructure and rising maintenance costs. Realizing this emerging challenge, tech companies have already started looking for alternatives to a centralized network to reduce dependency on a single network. Experts believe that the blockchain approach will prove to be a game-changer.

In a nutshell, IoT is a prominent, inescapable technology trend that is going to shape the way we live and work. If you want to be a frontrunner, the sooner you embrace it, the better.

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For object detection projects, labeling your images with their corresponding bounding boxes and names is a tedious and time-consuming task, often requiring a human to label each image by hand. The Edge Impulse Studio has already dramatically decreased the amount of time it takes to get from raw images to a fully labeled dataset with the Data Acquisition Labeling Queue feature directly in your web browser. To make this process even faster, the Edge Impulse Studio is getting a new feature: AI-Assisted Labeling.

ezgif_com_gif_maker_3_2924bbe7c1.gifAutomatically label common objects with YOLOv5.

 

To get started, create a “Classify multiple objects” images project via the Edge Impulse Studio new project wizard or open your existing object detection project. Upload your object detection images to your Edge Impulse project’s training and testing sets. Then, from the Data Acquisition tab, select “Labeling queue.” 

 

1. Using YOLOv5

By utilizing an existing library of pre-trained object detection models from YOLOv5 (trained with the COCO dataset), common objects in your images can quickly be identified and labeled in seconds without needing to write any code!

To label your objects with YOLOv5 classification, click the Label suggestions dropdown and select “Classify using YOLOv5.” If your object is more specific than what is auto-labeled by YOLOv5, e.g. “coffee” instead of the generic “cup” class, you can modify the auto-labels to the left of your image. These modifications will automatically apply to future images in your labeling queue.

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Click Save labels to move on to your next raw image, and see your fully labeled dataset ready for training in minutes!

 

2. Using your own model

You can also use your own trained model to predict and label your new images. From an existing (trained) Edge Impulse object detection project, upload new unlabeled images from the Data Acquisition tab. Then, from the “Labeling queue”, click the Label suggestions dropdown and select “Classify using <your project name>”:

Screen_Shot_2022_02_08_at_1_24_32_PM_caf900313c.png

 

You can also upload a few samples to a new object detection project, train a model, then upload more samples to the Data Acquisition tab and use the AI-Assisted Labeling feature for the rest of your dataset. Classifying using your own trained model is especially useful for objects that are not in YOLOv5, such as industrial objects, etc.

Click Save labels to move on to your next raw image, and see your fully labeled dataset ready for training in minutes using your own pre-trained model!

 

3. Using object tracking

If you have objects that are a similar size or common between images, you can also track your objects between frames within the Edge Impulse Labeling Queue, reducing the amount of time needed to re-label and re-draw bounding boxes over your entire dataset.

Draw your bounding boxes and label your images, then, after clicking Save labels, the objects will be tracked from frame to frame:

ezgif_com_gif_maker_2_87d2148451.gifTrack and auto-label your objects between frames.

 

Now that your object detection project contains a fully labeled dataset, learn how to train and deploy your model to your edge device: check out our tutorial!

 

Originally posted on the Edge Impulse blog by Jenny Plunkett - Senior Developer Relations Engineer.

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There was a time when we used to imagine how self-driving cars and home automation systems would look. However, over time the advancements in the IT domain have converted our fascinating assumptions and stories into reality.

In order to transform our imagination into reality, emerging technologies, such as AI/ML, IoT, and cloud, have played an essential role. These technology domains are like a buzzword across the global industries. Most of them, including AI and cloud, has become the mainstream technologies for IT operations, but IoT is yet to become one.

What we know about IoT technology is that it is some sort of technology connecting electronic devices communicating over internet connectivity. But you know what fascinates us the most, is that why it is known as the Internet of Things? Let’s find out.

What is IoT (Internet of Things)?

In simple terms, the Internet of Things (IoT) refers to a system where several physical (circuit-based electronics) devices are interconnected and communicate via Internet connectivity. They also gather and share data among connected devices, applications, or systems to further perform analytical operations. The data is shared among them in such a way, feeling like they are actually communicating to us and other connected things.

Apart from being a commercial system, the IoT platform is being used in many props, from smart wearables to industrial sensors, biotelemetry, and many others.

As per the research of Statistica – a leading research firm, the adoption of IoT technology or devices is expected to reach 13.8 billion units by the end of 2021 and 30.9 billion units by 2025.

The History of The Internet of Things:

The first forecasting about IoT was done by Nikola Tesla in 1926, where he said that: “When wireless is perfectly applied the whole earth will be converted into a huge brain, which in fact it is, all things being particles of a real and rhythmic whole. We shall be able to communicate with one another instantly, irrespective of distance.”

Further, the first project of connecting sensors and intelligence to the basic things was first ideated in the decade of 1980-the 1990s. Also, the journey from internet-connected vending machines to self-operable cars was very slow due to some technology and required skills barriers. Initially, the chips were big and bulky in size, creating barriers to establishing effective communication between objects.

Today, processors have become very cheap, compact, powerful, and cost-effective to connect billions of devices together.

The Invention of the RFID tags – They are more like low-power chips establishing wireless communication and have solved some connectivity-related issues by increasing internet broadband’s uptime alongside cellular and wireless networking.

The Invention of IPv6 – It is among another connected internet of things providing sufficient IP addresses for connecting IoT devices of the whole world. It plays an essential role in scaling IoT networks.

In the beginning, IoT was a buzzword among businesses and manufacturing industries where its application used to identify as M2M (Machine-to-Machine), but now it is being mounted in our homes, offices, and many places with smart devices.

This way, IoT technology is transforming our way of living, and we all can agree with it today.

Benefits of Having IoT Technology In Place:

Better Data Monitoring:

The IoT technology primarily helps us in monitoring. It also helps us detect the precise quantity and quality of supplies, check the air quality at home, and many others. It also provides data that is difficult or even almost impossible to collect flawlessly. For example, it can detect the quantity of printer ink present in the printer and let us know that it’s time to buy a new ink cartridge to avoid future hurry and trips to the store. The advancement of IoT has been done to the extent that it can also check the expiration of the product.

Easy Access:

Nowadays, technologies have become so advanced that real-time information sharing can be done smoothly from anywhere across the world with just a smart device and internet connectivity. IoT devices integrated with emerging technologies like AI/ML and cloud can make it possible to share data from one location to another in real-time.
Cost-Effectiveness:

The more organizations adopt IoT devices to enhance their productivity and profitability, the more this technology will be tailored to help businesses achieve success. IoT devices are increasingly impacting from cybersecurity to workforce efficiency alongside companies’ bottom line. If IoT devices are built using highly integrated sensors, they definitely support business applications to run at their peak level at reduced maintenance costs.

Efficiency and Productivity:

The efficiency in terms of the IoT can be referred to as automating repetitive or time-consuming tasks that ultimately cut down the overall time and effort investment. For example, an IoT-based automated program for converting PDF into other formats and sending it to the respected recipients directly. This process eliminates obstacles to PDF editing and archiving alongside better communication and documentation speeds.

Summing Up:

IoT can be considered the next-gen technology that automates all of our mundane workloads, gathers data in real-time, performs analytical processes on those data, and provides actionable insights to their improvement areas at reduced costs. IoT technology also plays an essential role in creating new business opportunities for organizations through innovations to traditional IT operational models. Also, they offer a better customer experience, which also acts as a revenue generation model for businesses.

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By Bee Hayes-Thakore

The Android Ready SE Alliance, announced by Google on March 25th, paves the path for tamper resistant hardware backed security services. Kigen is bringing the first secure iSIM OS, along with our GSMA certified eSIM OS and personalization services to support fast adoption of emerging security services across smartphones, tablets, WearOS, Android Auto Embedded and Android TV.

Google has been advancing their investment in how tamper-resistant secure hardware modules can protect not only Android and its functionality, but also protect third-party apps and secure sensitive transactions. The latest android smartphone device features enable tamper-resistant key storage for Android Apps using StrongBox. StrongBox is an implementation of the hardware-backed Keystore that resides in a hardware security module.

To accelerate adoption of new Android use cases with stronger security, Google announced the formation of the Android Ready SE Alliance. Secure Element (SE) vendors are joining hands with Google to create a set of open-source, validated, and ready-to-use SE Applets. On March 25th, Google launched the General Availability (GA) version of StrongBox for SE.

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Hardware based security modules are becoming a mainstay of the mobile world. Juniper Research’s latest eSIM research, eSIMs: Sector Analysis, Emerging Opportunities & Market Forecasts 2021-2025, independently assessed eSIM adoption and demand in the consumer sector, industrial sector, and public sector, and predicts that the consumer sector will account for 94% of global eSIM installations by 2025. It anticipates that established adoption of eSIM frameworks from consumer device vendors such as Google, will accelerate the growth of eSIMs in consumer devices ahead of the industrial and public sectors.


Consumer sector will account for 94% of global eSIM installations by 2025

Juniper Research, 2021.

Expanding the secure architecture of trust to consumer wearables, smart TV and smart car

What’s more? A major development is that now this is not just for smartphones and tablets, but also applicable to WearOS, Android Auto Embedded and Android TV. These less traditional form factors have huge potential beyond being purely companion devices to smartphones or tablets. With the power, size and performance benefits offered by Kigen’s iSIM OS, OEMs and chipset vendors can consider the full scope of the vast Android ecosystem to deliver new services.

This means new secure services and innovations around:

🔐 Digital keys (car, home, office)

🛂 Mobile Driver’s License (mDL), National ID, ePassports

🏧 eMoney solutions (for example, Wallet)

How is Kigen supporting Google’s Android Ready SE Alliance?

The alliance was created to make discrete tamper resistant hardware backed security the lowest common denominator for the Android ecosystem. A major goal of this alliance is to enable a consistent, interoperable, and demonstrably secure applets across the Android ecosystem.

Kigen believes that enabling the broadest choice and interoperability is fundamental to the architecture of digital trust. Our secure, standards-compliant eSIM and iSIM OS, and secure personalization services are available to all chipset or device partners in the Android Ready SE Alliance to leverage the benefits of iSIM for customer-centric innovations for billions of Android users quickly.

Vincent Korstanje, CEO of Kigen

Kigen’s support for the Android Ready SE Alliance will allow our industry partners to easily leapfrog to the enhanced security and power efficiency benefits of iSIM technology or choose a seamless transition from embedded SIM so they can focus on their innovation.

We are delighted to partner with Kigen to further strengthen the security of Android through StrongBox via Secure Element (SE). We look forward to widespread adoption by our OEM partners and developers and the entire Android ecosystem.

Sudhi Herle, Director of Android Platform Security 

In the near term, the Google team is prioritizing and delivering the following Applets in conjunction with corresponding Android feature releases:

  • Mobile driver’s license and Identity Credentials
  • Digital car keys

Kigen brings the ability to bridge the physical embedded security hardware to a fully integrated form factor. Our Kigen standards-compliant eSIM OS (version 2.2. eUICC OS) is available to support chipsets and device makers now. This announcement is a start to what will bring a whole host of new and exciting trusted services offering better experience for users on Android.

Kigen’s eSIM (eUICC) OS brings

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The smallest operating system, allowing OEMs to select compact, cost-effective hardware to run it on.

Kigen OS offers the highest level of logical security when employed on any SIM form factor, including a secure enclave.

On top of Kigen OS, we have a broad portfolio of Java Card™ Applets to support your needs for the Android SE Ready Alliance.

Kigen’s Integrated SIM or iSIM (iUICC) OS further this advantage

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Integrated at the heart of the device and securely personalized, iSIM brings significant size and battery life benefits to cellular Iot devices. iSIM can act as a root of trust for payment, identity, and critical infrastructure applications

Kigen’s iSIM is flexible enough to support dual sim capability through a single profile or remote SIM provisioning mechanisms with the latter enabling out-of-the-box connectivity, secure and remote profile management.

For smartphones, set top boxes, android auto applications, auto car display, Chromecast or Google Assistant enabled devices, iSIM can offer significant benefits to incorporate Artificial intelligence at the edge.

Kigen’s secure personalization services to support fast adoption

SIM vendors have in-house capabilities for data generation but the eSIM and iSIM value chains redistribute many roles and responsibilities among new stakeholders for the personalization of operator credentials along different stages of production or over-the-air when devices are deployed.

Kigen can offer data generation as a service to vendors new to the ecosystem.

Partner with us to provide cellular chipset and module makers with the strongest security, performance for integrated SIM leading to accelerate these new use cases.

Security considerations for eSIM and iSIM enabled secure connected services

Designing a secure connected product requires considerable thought and planning and there really is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution. How security should be implemented draws upon a multitude of factors, including:

  • What data is being stored or transmitted between the device and other connected apps?
  • Are there regulatory requirements for the device? (i.e. PCI DSS, HIPAA, FDA, etc.)
  • What are the hardware or design limitations that will affect security implementation?
  • Will the devices be manufactured in a site accredited by all of the necessary industry bodies?
  • What is the expected lifespan of the device?

End-to-end ecosystem and services thinking needs to be a design consideration from the very early stage especially when considering the strain on battery consumption in devices such as wearables, smart watches and fitness devices as well as portable devices that are part of the connected consumer vehicles.

Originally posted here.

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Selecting an IoT Platform

The past several years have seen a huge growth in the number of companies offering IoT Platforms. The market research firm IoT Analytics reported 613 companies offering IoT platforms in 2021! This is a mind-blowing number. The IoT platforms vary widely in capabilities but typically focus on one or more of the building blocks of IoT systems – physical devices, internet connectivity, and digital services. In one way or another, they provide software (or in some cases hardware too) that gives companies a head-start when building IoT systems. There are so many companies offering platforms that it is nearly impossible to keep up with all of them.

 Charting the right path, avoiding pitfalls, maximizing your success.

If you are getting into IoT and not familiar with IoT platforms, you might be asking yourself questions like –  What makes up an IoT platform? What advantages could they have for my company? How do I select an IoT platform? 

Let’s tackle these questions one by one. 

What makes up an IoT platform?
 

Features

True IoT platforms typically provide the following features:

  • Digital services running in the cloud that physical devices connect to
  • Software that runs on devices that communicates with the digital services
  • A framework or schema for data messaging and remote command & control of devices
  • Security infrastructure to handle device registration, authentication, security credential management
  • Tools and methods for updating device firmware over-the-air (OTA)
  • Web dashboards for viewing the state of devices and interacting with the system

IoT  platforms may or may not also provide other features, including:

  • Analytics tools and dashboards
  • Digital twins or shadows
  • Application deployment orchestration
  • Machine learning orchestration
  • Rules engines
  • Fleet management tools
  • Integrations to other services
  • Gateway or hub support for bridging devices to the cloud
  • Cellular network plans for devices
  • Web or mobile application interfaces and templates

Example Elements of an IoT PlatformIoT-Platform-Blog-General-1024x270.png

Types of IoT Platforms

IoT platforms are not all the same. Their features and target use-cases vary a lot. However, at a high level, they can be grouped into two main categories.

Platform as a Service (PaaS) – Offered by the big cloud service providers

PaaS platforms provide building blocks to do most things an IoT system needs, but it is up to you to write the custom code that connects it all together. With a PaaS provider, you don’t have to worry about underlying server hardware, but you have to compose their services into a working architecture and manage the deployment of applications that use their services. This is more work but allows more flexibility and the opportunity to customize the system to your needs. Ongoing costs of a PaaS IoT platform are typically lower than a SaaS, but expertise is required to ensure correct usage patterns to avoid larger costs. The big cloud providers all offer PaaS IoT platforms. This includes Amazon Web Services (AWS)Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP).

Software as a Service (SaaS) – Offered by numerous software vendors, large and small

With a SaaS provider, you get access to use the software application they deploy and manage for you. Or you can license it and deploy it yourself. SaaS platforms typically provide some configurability and integrations with other systems. There is much less work on the cloud side as this is mostly taken care of for you. However, you are limited to the features that the IoT platform provider offers. You may need to invest more in bridging the platform to your other systems. Depending on your use case, a SaaS may provide more advanced features out-of-the-box than a PaaS. Ongoing costs are likely to be higher with SaaS IoT platforms. Examples of SaaS IoT platform providers include PelionLosantFriendly TechnologiesSoftware AGBlynkParticleThingsBoard, and Golioth.

What advantages could they have for my company?

Benefits of IoT Platforms – There are a lot.

The goal of IoT platforms is to provide a foundation for product-makers to build IoT solutions on top of.  IoT platforms take care of all the fundamental features that all solutions need (e.g. “the plumbing”), so you can focus on adding value with the differentiating features that you add on top. Users of IoT platforms get a huge benefit from economies of scale – especially if using the most popular platforms. This translates into improved security, more robust services, and lower costs. For these reasons, we always recommend using an IoT platform.

How do I select an IoT platform?

The Big Question – Should you use a PaaS or SaaS?

At SpinDance, we believe in lean and agile business principles. This usually translates into taking a staged approach and focusing on different priorities in each stage. IoT is a journey, not a destination. We have seen the most success when companies tackle each of their challenges in stages, don’t try to do too much too quickly, and don’t lock themselves into long-term decisions too early. Choosing whether to use a PaaS or Saas depends on the stage you are in along your IoT journey.

Our Answer – It depends on your stage in your IoT journey. 

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If you are just starting on your IoT journey…

In the disconnected stage your main goals are to learn what technology can do for you, develop a vision for your new product or service with that knowledge, and evaluate your vision based on customer input. At this stage, you shouldn’t be worried too much about scale or efficiency. You need to nail down the problem you want to solve and the solution you propose to solve it with. Ash Maurya, entrepreneur and author of Running Lean, says that “Building a successful product is fundamentally about risk mitigation.” To evaluate and reduce your risk, you need to test your assumptions.

We often recommend building Proof of Concepts and Prototypes in this stage. These experiments are crucial to help you quickly validate the feasibility, desirability, and viability of your plans. They also help rally your organization and potential customers around new possibilities.

SaaS IoT platforms have their most advantage in this stage. They can help you get devices connected and data flowing quickly because they typically have more features ready out-of-the-box. However, since your knowledge about the future is limited at this stage, we recommend you avoid long-term commitments so you don’t get stuck with a solution that doesn’t work for you down the road.

 If you are working on your first connected product…

In the connecting stage, you should have some confidence in your problem-market fit and you should have a better idea of what benefits IoT can bring to your business. Now you need to build a system to deal with the rigors of production. You also need to adapt your organization to support your new product or service.

We recommend shifting your focus to creating robust experiences for your customers spanning across the physical devices and digital interfaces they interact with. You need to consider the other parts of the system such as mobile applications, web applications, database storage, operations dashboards, etc that you’ll need for your customers and your internal teams to interact with the system.

PaaS IoT platforms start to have a strong advantage in this stage. More often than not, we see the needs of the company outstretch the features provided by a SaaS. Therefore, there is a need to augment the capabilities of the SaaS platform or bridge it to your other systems. For example, if a SaaS IoT platform does not provide long-term data storage, you will need to create a bridge that pulls data from the platform’s service and puts it into a database that you control in the cloud. Maintaining and monitoring this bridge is non-trivial which may lead to you wanting to consolidate everything into your existing cloud. For reasons like this, we typically recommend PaaS platforms at this stage.

If you already have connected products out in the market…

The connected or accelerating stages are all about maximizing the benefit of IoT, taking advantage of the valuable data you are likely getting, and aligning your costs to revenue. You should be focused on scaling up your system while you improve your connected customer relationships and build up new processes and skills. These are not insignificant tasks. It takes in-house expertise. Your team needs to understand your systems, be able to improve efficiencies and optimize costs. You’ve got to get data to the right place when you need it, and it has to drive reliable actions across all your infrastructure.

PaaS IoT platforms offer the most advantage at this stage. You have more control of your systems and are not locked into a specific software platform. You have the ability to customize and have tighter integration with your existing systems. This lets you adapt and evolve to meet the needs of your customers over time.

Which production architecture works for you?

Considering the needs of your production system likely go beyond the needs of your prototypes and minimum viable product (MVP), it is best to think about what additional features you will need to augment the capabilities of your selected IoT platform. The diagrams below show the difference between augmenting a SaaS platform versus a PaaS platform.

An IoT System Built Around SaaS Platform
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An IoT System Built on a PaaS PlatformIoT-Platform-Blog-PaaS-1024x444.png

What else should be considered when choosing an IoT Platform?

When selecting an IoT platform, you are also choosing an ecosystem to join. This has ramifications that go beyond just the platform. Consider the following questions:

  • What device types are already supported / how easy is it to support the devices I need?
  • How close does the platform fit my use-case?
  • How easy is it to get started and use?
  • What skills do I need on my team to utilize the platform?
  • Will my team get the support we need to succeed?
  • Is the service reliable / highly available / trustworthy?
  • What additional features and services will I have to develop?
  • What systems do I need to integrate with? How easy is that?
  • What will my ongoing costs be for the IoT platform as well as other systems I need to maintain.
  • What happens if I want to change to a different IoT Platform?
  • Am I building the skills and knowledge we need inside my organization to succeed in the future?

Jumpstarting your IoT Systems with Starter Components

Building a system based on a PaaS platform offers a lot of flexibility and control. But you are faced with configuring and deploying your own applications to get your system running. There are a lot of reasons why you don’t want to create things from scratch. You need a head start. You need to follow good patterns and industry best practices. So, what should you do?

We believe that starter components, a.k.a. solution templates, solution implementations, etc, offer a great jumpstart to standing up a robust system. The big cloud companies know this and offer templates for various use-cases. These can be used in any stage of the  IoT Journey. For example, AWS has a Smart Product Solution solution implementation that features capabilities to connect devices, process and analyze telemetry data, etc within a scalable framework. A fundamentally great feature of this is that it is based on AWS Cloud Development Kit (CDK) which means it can be programmatically deployed in minutes. Microsoft Azure has similar solution examples that can also be deployed and tested relatively quickly.

Additionally, there are a lot of benefits from working with a solution provider that has experience with IoT systems and can offer good guidance and support. SpinDance recently collaborated with our partner TwistThink to build Auris Cloud, a set of customizable IoT components that capture our combined years of experience working on IoT systems. Auris components are customizable to meet the needs of many different types of use cases and are deployable on AWS. Things like security, performance, and scalability are baked into the system. Auris can be optimized for different performance and cost models, integrated with other systems, and deployed as an application that you control. We believe this approach offers a great trade-off between fully custom and off-the-shelf solutions.

Summary

At SpinDance, we don’t recommend you try to build an IoT system from scratch. There are great solutions available from both SaaS and PaaS providers. They offer massive benefits in enabling you to build secure and scalable IoT solutions. However, we recommend you consider your organization’s goals and the stage you are in before locking yourself into an IoT platform. Be sure to start with your customer needs and build backward. Prototype and get things right before scaling. A SaaS IoT platform can be great for building proof of concepts or prototyping but may not work for you long term. For maximum customization, flexibility, and tighter integration with your other cloud applications we recommend a PaaS IoT platform. And for the lowest risks and maximum benefits, we recommend using pre-built components that can be customized to your needs.

Read more…

Connected devices are emerging as a modern way for grocers to decrease food spoilage and energy waste losses. With bottom-line advantages, it is not surprising to experience some of the biggest business giants are putting internet of things (IoT) techniques to work and enhance the operating results.

According to Talk Business, Walmart uses IoT for different tasks like tracking food temperature, equipment energy outputs, etc. IoT apps help monitor refrigeration units for several products such as milk cold, ice cream, etc. It reports back to a support team if sensors have intimate equipment difficulties fixed without serious malfunctions and minimal downtime.

IoT solutions are used broadly during Walmart's massive store footprint. The connected devices send a total of 1.5 billion messages each day. Throughout the grocery business, IoT is leveraged to enhance food safety and decrease excessive energy consumption. IoT solutions allow food retailers to reduce food spoilage by 40% and experience a net energy saving of 30%.
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Image: (Source)

It was forecasted that in 2018 grocers lose around $70 million per year due to food spoilage. However, large chains are losing hundreds of millions due to the same. Hence most grocers have started implementing sustainability-focused IoT technology to avoid wastage and increase their business profit to a great extent.

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Explore How IoT Helps to Offer Safer Shopping Experience to Shoppers

People prepare to stock up food in preparation; however, there are numerous challenges that the pandemic raised in front of retails. But more retail trends are an answer to all the challenges, beginning from product moving to stock and much more. 

It also helps to ensure safe and healthy deliveries to customers' doorsteps, especially whenever they need it. Harvard study shows that grocery shopping is a high-risk activity than traveling on an airplane during COVID 19 pandemic. With COID 19 pandemic raging, retailer stores need to provide an efficient shopping experience; they must look for ways that help them overcome exposure and the risk of infection as customers venture to the store for food.

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Most grocers turn towards modern technology such as IoT to help retailers or supermarkets offer safe service and meet the bottom lines. By placing internet of things devices throughout the store, smart grocery carts, baskets, etc., grocers can help make experiences more efficient and safer. Let's check how IoT is helping retailer businesses to overcome today's challenging scenarios and stop food spoilage.

Smart Stock Monitoring

Retailers keep warehouses full of goods to ensure that they don't run when there is high demand. And by integrating IoT-enabled sensors, retailers can easily detect weight on sleeves at warehouses and stores. It also helps them determine popular item lists; keeping track of items helps retailers restock them and prevent overstocking a particular product.

Guaranteeing Timely Deliveries

The report shows that 66% of customers anticipate they will increase online shopping in 2020. Undoubtedly online shopping is a new norm these days; most people prefer to order their daily essentials using a grocery delivery mobile app. However, it becomes vital for brands to ensure timely delivery. It's a critical factor, especially when it comes to customer satisfaction, especially when there is a lack of traditional consumer engagement like a friendly salesperson.

And by integrating IoT-enabled devices into containers and shipments, retailers can quickly obtain insight into shipments. They can even track real-time updates to keep their customers up to date on the approximate delivery time. It's critical, especially when you want to achieve excellent customer experiences in the eCommerce market.

However, data collected using IoT-enabled devices can help you drive the supply chain effectively by empowering retailers with root optimization for ensuring fast delivery. The IoT can play a crucial role, especially when it comes to recognizing warehouse delays. It also helps to optimize delivery operations for better and quicker service.

Manage Store Capacity

With the new COVID 19 safety guidelines to follow, IoT helps retailers ensure their customer's safety by supporting social distancing rules. For example, retailers can place IoT sensors at the entrance and exit to efficiently monitor traffic and grocery carts. The sensors provide accurate and up-to-date details. Details enable retailers to efficiently operate capacity, ensuring safety, and eliminates the need for store "bouncers" at exit and entrance.

Contact Monitoring

Retailers can offer a safe and unique shopping experience by benefiting from IoT. It helps them with contact monitoring and social distancing as well. Retailers can provide shoppers with IoT-enabled wearables paired with the shopper's mobile phone through their branded app. It helps shoppers detect whether they are too close to another shopper and report them through their phone and record the incident.

Combating COVID 19: How IoT is Helping Retailers?

Preventing food spoilage, saving energy, and reducing waste are good practices for grocery stores helping them to increase their profit margin. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, digital resilience has boosted drastically. 

Many brands and retailers, however, put a pause on initiatives during COVID 19. But to ensure their survival and profit margins, they need to start with new strategies and techniques. Check few IoT use cases that retailers are considering these days:

Video Analytics

Although supermarkets have practiced video surveillance technologies for the last many years, some brands are repurposing these systems to enhance their inventory management practices. Cameras would monitor consumer behaviors and help retailers to prevent theft.

As the customer's purchase preference changes constantly, it becomes essential for grocery stores to start stocking more perishable goods. A 2018 survey shows that more than 60% of retailers integrate refrigerators to store fresh products at their stores and meet customers' growing demand. 

And by monitoring customers' purchasing patterns, grocery stores can gauge how much extra produce they need to acquire and how unexpected surges and falls in the market will affect their margins.

Autonomous Cleaning Robots

To promote social distancing, grocery stores are taking all essential precautions. They have implemented a rigorous cleaning schedule to reduce the risk of COVID 19 spread. Retailers are focusing on sanitizing and disinfecting frequent touch surfaces using autonomous cleaning robots.

Robots can be controlled using IoT-based devices and help to sanitize various parts, including doors, shopping carts, countertops, etc. All these tasks demand a reasonable amount of time and employees' attention as well. But performing functions with the help of autonomous cleaning robots can help retailers save their employees time and energy.

Contactless Checkout

Contactless checkout has become increasingly popular over the few years. It has helped supermarkets reduce the requirement for cashier dedication to increase the customers' shopping speed. During the COVID 19 pandemic, the self-service environments have allowed customers a way to acquire essential food, cleaning products, and other day-to-day essentials without having to communicate with supermarket staff directly.

What's Next for Smart Supermarkets?

IoT technologies help supermarkets to tackle new challenges efficiently. Most stores know that they receive products from a different location, which went to a distribution center, making them lose traceability. But with IoT integration, it has become easier for them to track every business activity and provide an internet of shopping experience to customers.

Modern IoT technology makes it possible for grocery stores to track every activity at each stage. It becomes crucial for the health and safety of your customers, while it helps to handle top purchase priorities. It helps grocery stores exist and maintain healthy purchasing trends. IoT initiatives provide the shopping 2.0 infrastructure like smart shelves, carts, cashless, and other options that change the primary service experience.

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by Carsten Gregersen

With how fast the IoT industry is growing, it’s paramount your business isn’t left behind.

IoT technology has brought a ton of benefits and makes systems more efficient and easier to manage. As a result, it’s no surprise that more businesses are adopting IoT solutions. On top of that, businesses starting new projects have the slight advantage of buying all new technology and, therefore, not having to deal with legacy systems. 

On the other hand, if you have an already operational legacy system and you want to implement IoT, you may think you have to buy entirely new technology to get it online, right? Not necessarily. After all, if your legacy systems are still functional and your staff is comfortable with them, why should you waste all of that time and money?

Legacy systems can still bend to your will and be used for adopting IoT. Sticking rather than twisting can help your business save money on your IoT project.

In this blog, we’ll go over the steps you would need to follow for integrating IoT technology into your legacy systems and the different options you have to get this done.

1. Analyze Your Current Systems

First things first, take a look at your current system and take note of their purpose, the way they work, the type of data that they collect, and the way they could benefit by communicating with each other.

This step is important because it will allow you to plan out IoT integration more efficiently. When analyzing your current systems make sure you focus on these key aspects:

  • Automation – See how automation is currently accomplished and what other aspects should be automated.
  • Efficiency – What aspects are routinely tedious or slow and could become more efficient?
  • Data – How it’s taken, stored, and processed, and how it could be used better
  • Money – Analyze how much some processes cost and keep them in mind to know what aspects could be done for cheaper with IoT
  • Computing – The way data is processed, whether it be cloud, edge, or hybrid.

Following these steps will help you know your project in and out and apply IoT in the areas that truly matter.

2. Plan for IoT Integration

In order to integrate IoT into your legacy systems, you must get everything in order. 

In order to successfully integrate IoT into your system, you will need to have strong planning, design, and implementation phases. Steps you will need to follow in order to achieve this can be

  • Decide what IoT hardware is going to be needed
  • Set a budget taking software, hardware, and maintenance into account
  • Decide on a communication protocol
  • Develop software tools for interacting with the system
  • Decide on a security strategy

This process can be daunting if you don’t know how IoT works, but by following the right tutorials and developing with the right tools, your IoT project can be easily realizable. 

Nabto has tools that can not only help you set up an IoT project but also adding legacy systems and newer IoT devices to it.

Here are several ways in which we can help get your legacy systems IoT ready. 

  • You can integrate the Nabto SDK to add IoT remote control access to your devices.
  • Use the Nabto application to move data from one network to another – otherwise known as TCP tunneling.
  • Add secure remote access to your existing solutions. 
  • Build mobile apps for remote control of embedded devices our IoT app solution.

3. Implement IoT Sensors to Existing Hardware

IoT has the capability to automize, control, and make systems more efficient. Therefore, interconnecting your legacy systems to allow for communication is a great idea.

There’s a high chance your legacy systems don’t currently have the ability to sense or communicate data. However, adding new IoT sensors can give them these capabilities.

IoT sensors are small devices that can detect when something changes. Then, they capture and send information to a main computer over the internet to be processed or execute commands. These could measure (but not limited to):

  • Temperature
  • Humidity
  • Pressure
  • Gyroscope
  • Accelerometer

These sensors are cheap and easy to install, therefore, adding them to your existing legacy systems can be the simplest and quickest way to get to communicate over the internet.

Set up which inputs the sensor should respond to and under what conditions, and what it should do with the collected data. You could be surprised by the benefits that making a simple device to collect data can have for your project!

4. Connect Existing PLCs to the Internet

If you already have an automated system managed by a PLC (Programmable Logic Controller,) devices already share data with each other. Therefore, the next step is to get them online.

With access to the internet, these systems can be controlled remotely from anywhere in the world. Data can be accessed, modified, and analyzed more easily. On top of that, updates can be pushed globally at any time.

Given that some PLCs utilize proprietary protocols and have a weird way of making devices communicate with each other, an IoT gateway is the best way to take the PLC to the internet.

An IoT gateway is a device that acts as a bridge between IoT devices and the cloud, and allows for communication between them. This allows you to implement IoT to a PLC without having to restructure it or change it too much.

5. Connect Legacy using an IO port

A lot of times a legacy system has some kind of interface for data input/output. Sometimes, this is implemented for debugging when the product was developed. However, at other times, this is done to make it possible for service organizations to be able to interface with products in the field and to help customers with setup and/or debug problems.

These debug ports are similar to real serial ports, such as an RS-485 RS-232, etc. That being said, they can be more raw UART, SPI, or I2C. What’s more, the majority of the time the protocol on top of the serial connection is proprietary.

This kind of interface is great. It allows you a “black box” to be created via a physical interface matching the legacy system and firmware running on this black box. This can translate “internet” requests to the proprietary protocol of the legacy system. In addition,  this new system can be used as a design for newer internet-accessible versions of the system simply by adopting the black box onto the internal legacy design.

Bottom Line

Getting your legacy systems to work in IoT is not as much of a challenge as you might have initially thought.

Following some fairly simple strategies can let you set them up relatively quickly. However, don’t forget the planning phase for your IoT strategy and deciding how it’s going to be implemented in your own legacy system. This will allow you to streamline the process even more, and make you take full advantage of all the benefits that IoT brings to your project.

Originally posted here.

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Experts believe that smart parking management systems aid you in generating more income. Let's find out!

It doesn't take rocket science to understand why consumers avoid brick and mortar shopping at all these days. Understand, parking issues have been a sole reason for people to avoid going to shopping malls. 

As customer behaviour changes, shopping centres have come under immense pressure to find car parking problems in their shopping malls. Every effort is made to improve and enhance the traditional shopping experience, ultimately driving the revenue. 

Every minute a customer spends looking for parking is one less minute they have to shop.

So let's get into why experts believe that the smart parking management system will cater best to your needs.

Smart Parking Booking System: The Need of an Hour

What does a smart parking management system mean?

A smart parking management system using IoT is simply a that incorporates IoT technologies. Technologies such as sensing devices identify which parking area is empty, and often these give you a real-time parking map.

What Are the Issues Faced by the Customers While Parking Their Vehicles? 

  • Saturated Parking Spaces- The most significant problem today is the number of vehicles is rising, and the parking space remains the same. Thus, resulting in clogging. 
  • Overpaying- Sometimes, drivers/ customers are unaware of the duration they will stay at a particular place. Therefore, they sometimes overpay the parking charges. 
  • Environmental Impacts - Parking lots accumulate a lot of pollutants that do not get absorbed and hence flushed into the water bodies during rain. 
  • On-street or Off-street parking- The customer does not get sufficient space in the mall's parking lot or their destined location. These again cause heavy traffic jams. 
  • Insufficient use of existing parking space- People are always in a hurry, and thus they do sometimes lack patience. At times, they do not park properly. As a result, there is insufficient space for other vehicles to park.

So How Does a Smart Parking Management System Aid You?

The smart parking system with IoT works like a boon for your parking system. The problems in parking seem to be resolved with these parking problems. Here are the benefits of a smart parking management system.

  • Won't it be great for customers to find a parking spot before they leave their house? Well, parking systems using IoTprovide you with these benefits. They can check and also book their parking lot before leaving their home.
  • Once a customer enters the parking space, they are easily navigated to their allotted parking spot.
  • The reduction in traffic, as the driver is clear about the designated location.
  • One can get data to tell them the forecasted peak times and give frequent reports about the current situation.
  • Stop paying extra dues; with smart parking, one can pay real-time payments and electronic payments, making a seamless experience.

As a result, this increases the value of customers' shopping trips. Moreover, their productivity also increases while maximizing their shopping experience and lowering their fuel cost.

Features of Smart Parking System

If you have thought of integrating a smart parking system into your enterprise, it's vital to update yourself with the necessary features to enhance the experience. 

  • In-door Navigation
  • Wallet Management
  • Live Reports
  • Automated Pass Management
  • Penalty and Violation Management
  • Revenue Analysis
  • Zone Management
  • Booking Management
  • Car Counters
  • Vehicle Identification 

A Glimpse of Challenges Faced During the Smart Parking Management System Project

Here is the list of problems faced through the implications of the smart parking project. 

The primary issue while implementing a smart parking management system is that many sensors have to be connected to the internet to get information for a single booking slot. You need to have an array of routers, and that seems a bit troublesome. 

However, all the sensors are internally connected and can work individually without being connected to the internet with the mesh connection

So, only a specific sensor is connected to the internet, passing the information to all other sensors. It works excellent as other routers don't need an internet connection. 

Secondly, what if the navigation shown to the users is inaccurate? Your customer can reach other locations, which can be a bit troublesome. 

With the proper implementation of a parking control system, you can keep the hardware when there are turns, leading to fewer misleads. Also, one should use pixel by pixel to draw a path between the hardware. This works as a perfect solution that would lead to bare minimum errors. 

Such minor technicalities are a boon for your automated parking management system. However, it would be best if you had experts who are well versed with these systems and can guide you perfectly for the proper implementation of the projects.

What Are the Components Used in the IoT Smart Parking System?

  • A sensor is vital as it detects the presence of vehicles.
  • A microcontroller that will aid you to process your data.
  • A cloud platform for storing the data.
  • A mobile application that would give you control over this process of smart parking. 

What Does the Future Hold?

The smart parking management system has begun to accelerate its demand. With the limited land resources, smart parking seems the only viable solution. 

Think for a while that it's impossible to create space for parking. Therefore, instead of thinking about making extra parking spaces, an effective technology-based solution works great for the situation. 

You can optimize the spaces available at their best. One should be careful about how you will implement these solutions.

Being a leading IoT application development company, we offer the best smart parking management solutions.

Our clients trusted us, and we have never failed them or ever will. For any guidance, you can connect with our executives and clarify your doubts.

FAQs

What Is the Purpose of a Smart Parking System? 

In layman terms, the purpose of smart parking systems is to reduce the time and hassle caused to people while parking their vehicles.

How Many Types of Parking Are There?

There are four types of parking; these are (i) Parallel Parking, (ii) Angled Parking, (iii) Perpendicular Parking & (iv) Double Parking.

How Does a Smart Parking System Work?

Smart parking is a cost-effective and most efficient way of giving real-time information to users. The sensors installed in the pavements detect space and notify the user. Thus, one can know the availability of the parking spaces.

What Are the Advantages of a Parking Management System? 

  • Provides more protection.
  • Easily managed.
  • Cost-effective.
  • Easy to maintain.
  • Real-time information.
  • Increased footfalls
  • Less pollution
  • Fewer traffic issues
Read more…

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