BUSTING MYTHS WHILE BUILDING PRACTICAL IoT SOLUTIONS 

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Internet of things has been the buzzword till now. IoT is talked about everywhere and is it really true that there is a reason that it is getting hyped beyond necessary. Before everything snowballs back, let’s look some of the misconceptions or rather myths that are surrounding IoT that will give us some time to think clearly. This article is written based on the insights given from Anand T from KNEWRON technologies.

Is it M2M or IoT?

Anand T, KNEWRON Technologies

People who have been working in this IoT segment would actually call it M2M (Machine to machine) communication, which is true. IoT is the lingo of the academicians. It is a known fact that only the name is new but the concept is truly Machine to machine communication. In simple words and there is no undermining it. IoT could be the called the augmentation of IoT, which is like a layer of software on the machine which sends the sensor data through a gateway to the cloud platform which resides in server clusters for analysis and decision making. All these get converged into one problem-solving approach to be collectively called as IoT. If you are planning to sell IoT to products to the customers, it may be a good practice to label IoT as there might be chances that some customers do not appreciate the value.

What is truly an IoT product?

“Anybody can build IoT” phrase is a thing of the past. Being a hobbyist and being able to link sensor to the smart controller board, adding a gsm module and linking it a cloud service just sounds like IoT.  “In the market, there are a plethora of companies who say we are an IoT company. One has to be cautious while buying an IoT device because not all internet connected devices are part of it”, says Anand T. Again, Big data is not IoT it’s a whole different concept to be precise. Sensor data send to big data could don’t count in either. One of the aspects that would count into an IoT product is the presence of the important elements, the sensor, the gateways, the internet and the cloud analytics engine with a feedback mechanism to run the whole show.

It’s not blue sky everywhere

IoT has a peculiar take when it comes to standards. If you observe every IoT implementation could be entirely different from the other. If one is proprietary, other could be customized to new tweaks. On contrary, this is the reason IoT has no standards defined. There are many

International organizations trying to set standards to IoT but they will soon realize that the blue-sky theory is far and unachievable according to Anand.

Prized question

“Anyone can hack into it. You may have a temperature controller cracked, your house may be at risk. One thing to understand here is that one can hack inputs but cannot hack outputs. Think about it.”, Says Anand T. Yes, IoT devices are hackable. They could be easily sniffed, cracked into, jailbroken, installed with malware and in recent times, could be used for cryptocurrency mining without anyone knowing

Easy to deploy IoT or not?

Here we will have to say a sorry to the hobbyists. Although it is not rocket science, IoT does require some core technology and engineering knowledge. Just connecting a smart controlled board to the sensor and cloud does justice to the concept but doesn’t address the problem IoT could solve in the real world. It also depends on where the solution built to address a real-world problem.

To quote an example, monitoring the swimming pool water quality, its chlorine level, and purity level will tell the authorities to change the water or purify it using chemicals etc automatically if IoT systems are installed. Now, this is a real-world impact we are talking about possible due to IoT.

It looks simple but care has to be taken right from the placement of the sensor (which should be a place where people go). Sealing the sensor would be paradoxical as the reading will not be accurate. Now the sensors need to be calibrated to sense these levels in a pool of 25 thousand liters or more. All these points a fact of why not replace this with a person to care of the pool at much lesser investment?

Technically this could be done.  Its all about perceptions, investment and engineering effort but to deploy or not must be taken on careful evaluation.

LoRaWAN for India

“LoRaWAN is not new but India Inc. could be a great investment. The Indian government is now grappling with its specification and early this year this is going to be a quite good tech as it requires low power and gives a range of 6-8 km and on top of it. 2G and GSM channels will be off while 3G is power hungry. India doesn’t have a strong community but it will be a good opportunity.” Says Anand. LoRaWAN has the capability to take Industrial IoT to new heights and fulfill the connectivity hurdles that are being faced now.

For more such interesting stories, read more.

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