In the development of the Internet of Things, vendors are integrating programs to facilitate placement, but security remains Achilles’ heel.
The Internet of Things has been a technology for years, but the pandemic and the associated wave of remote work have accelerated its actual application in the enterprise. In addition, IoT is evolving as vendors begin to sell fully functional applications, not just the components that companies need to build themselves.
The pandemic has already led to an increase in IoT-familiar technologies, including industry-predicted maintenance, ports and other vehicle automation. In these areas, IoT reduces the amount of time employees spend on site, as remotely controlled systems often do not require personal maintenance, as in other cases. Certain functions, including certain types of inspections and services, can be completely remotely controlled, which further reduces the amount of time employees have to spend in the field and in close proximity to each other.
Commercial IoT applications
Al Velosa, Gartner’s vice president and analyst, said the next big change to IoT is moving away from the usual standard connection where hardware vendors sell a way to access data from field assets to the cloud and move toward fully integrated applications. “In 2021, it’s really growing and I think the dominant trend will be more closed business applications,” he said. “We have seen some new corporate strategies banning the arbitrary sale of the IoT platform. Now sell software and IoT.
According to Velos, this is an effective transition from the sale of components to the finished product, a sign of growing maturity in the IoT market. In the past, a company like Sigfox could sell a network connection to a company with cloud endpoints and back endpoints to use. Now GE, Siemens and others are selling their operating technologies as an integrated service. This is not the end of the independent seller world, it simply means that they sell their products or services from one company to another.
In addition, integrated applications are sold and deployed on a scale rather than in dispersion and test conditions as in the past, said Forrester chief analyst Michele Pelino. “These IoT initiatives are taking place in a broader sense,” he said. “The key now is that these initiatives, which are important to the organization – security, scale – must be taken into account as they become more diverse.”
According to Velos, the increasing focus on IoT is reflected in costs. A recent study by Gartner on IT decision makers on new technologies showed that average IoT funding will increase from about $ 400,000 per organization in the last 12 months to $ 600,000 in 2022.
Security remains a problem because IoT requires many levels of security – endpoints, networks and the cloud. In 2021, attacks on devices have grown rapidly and there are no signs of slowing down. And because the responsibility for these different types of security lies with different stakeholders – the network provider is responsible for secure communication, the device provider is responsible for physical security, and the cloud provider is responsible for the background – the problem of working together arises. . “There is significant pressure on organizations to provide security at many levels,” Velosa said. “Unfortunately, we are also witnessing persistent problems with how these organizations are actively funding it.”
These concerns may increase in the near future as more prevalent IoT placements – and placements in more sensitive parameters – are formed.
“When you start destroying the critical infrastructure that connects the world, you’re potentially affecting the lives of millions of people or critical resources and revenues,” Pelino said.
The sustainable future of IoT
According to Pelino, IoT is also a hope for the future. One of the key factors in IoT costs in the near future is sustainability, at least in part due to growing regulatory requirements in many industries.
There are many possibilities for IoT technology to achieve this, from building maintenance systems that turn off lights in non-residential rooms to industrial devices that control excessive energy consumption or emissions of toxic substances.
“IoT is about using real-time knowledge to bring these processes together and contribute to real-time sustainability,” Pelino said.