Understanding IOT Software & Its Uses
Internet of Things (IoT) systems connect networked devices and perform many functions. Discover the benefits and several of the top IoT systems.
The internet of things (IoT) refers to a system or connected computer systems transferring data over a shared network without any human input to complete the transfer. In order to work, each device in the IoT system is assigned a unique identifier (UID). As long as a device is capable of receiving an internet protocol (IP) address, it is capable of joining an IoT network. While the networks are most commonly associated with computers, many other devices are capable of joining an IoT network. Some of the most unique examples include animals with biochips, cars with smart safety devices or even an individual with a heart monitor implant.
IoT networks use the connected devices to gather data. The devices either make decisions based around changes in the data, or it reports the data to a centralized source. If the data is sent to another network, it either must be part of a cloud system or an administrator must download the data directly. While it sounds complex, the main purpose of IoT’s is to improve efficiency by limiting how much data must be manually entered by hand and automating computer tasks.
Creating Smart Devices and Systems
The biggest benefit of using an IoT system is creating what is commonly referred to as a smart device. Smart devices typically have limited computing power. What makes the device intelligent is the device's connection to the IoT. IoT’s are commonly used with machine learning. As data comes into the system, the connected devices interpret the data and start making decisions based on the information it receives. A common example of this is when a store website recommends products. The recommended products are the result of other viewers consistently looking at the same items. The IoT interprets these as the most popular products and prioritizes them in advertisements because the system believes those products are most likely to draw in shoppers.
Why IoT is Important to Businesses
When used correctly, IoT is a great asset for both small and large businesses. IoT systems constantly collect data using reported sales, views and customer service reports. In the past, all this information was collected manually. Not only did this take a great deal of time, but the reports also had to be hand generated. Today, IoT systems automatically gather this information and provide real-time reports. You can track sales and determine which products or services are most popular. IoT is also used to monitor other devices in your network, including supply chain and logistical systems.
You can also use an IoT system for machine learning. Many software companies utilize machine learning to keep their products up to date. It is especially important for security software. As new threats come out, IoT systems receive information about security flaws and vulnerabilities. The systems learn to identify these threats and come up with solutions. As solutions are developed, the other devices on the network receive the updates, which are then patched to client devices.
Overall, IoT systems greatly improve workplace efficiency and automate many tedious tasks, freeing up employees to perform more important services. It can also be used to deliver more effective customer service, solving common issues so your IT team can focus on critical issues. IoT systems are becoming so common, most businesses already use them without even realizing it.
Pros and Cons of IoT Systems
There are both positives and negatives to consider if you want to set up an IoT. While there are many benefits, the top ones include automating simple tasks, quickly sending information among a large number of users and improved communication between all connected systems. IoT systems are also a great way to save money by creating a more efficient system.
Being part of a connected network has a few potential downsides. Because all the devices are connected, more information is at risk if a hacker gets into your system. If you want to run an IoT system, it is important you set up and continually update your security software. Another potential issue is compatibility. Because there is no standard for creating IoT systems, not all devices are compatible. The more devices from different manufacturers you introduce, the greater the chance the devices will not work. For smaller businesses this is typically not an issue, but it may become a problem in larger companies.
Voracity is an IoT primarily designed for businesses. The platform has a number of uses, such as data discovery by tracking sales and business information, studying business analytics or automating device data streaming. Voracity is compatible with a number of manufacturers and platforms, including Windows, Unix and Linux. It is highly customizable and IRI provides frequent updates to make the system even more efficient. IRI does not have a base price for Voracity. Instead, you must request a custom quote based on your system and volume needs.
Particle is fast becoming one of the top IoT services because of their competitive pricing. Particle also works with a wide range of devices, with options for cellular, cloud and wi-fi connected devices, in addition to standard computer systems. It is also compatible with several other IoT networks and can connect to Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure. The cost varies depending on the type of product. A mesh network is $15 per device, wi-fi is $25 and cellular is $49.
Amazon AWS IoT Core
Amazon’s AWT Core is an IoT primarily used to create cloud systems. It is one of the most secure IoT systems, receiving constant updates from Amazon to address newly discovered flaws or exploits. It is also fully compatible with other Amazon services, such as Quicksight, Lambda and Kinesis. Amazon also has a host of video tutorials available to all users to help learn how to best integrate the system into your business. You must contact Amazon for a custom quote, but as of writing, a lengthy one-year free trial is available.