The Internet of Things (IoT) has transformed the way companies do business. Loosely defined as the inter-connectivity of electronics and “things” with electronic sensors, IoT technology allows objects to share data in real-time without the intervention of a human. The applications are virtually endless. IoT devices help trucking companies track their vehicles, help healthcare providers monitor the vital statistics of their offsite patients, assist manufacturing companies with quality control and avoiding costly repair issues, and make it easy for retail companies to keep track of their inventory. Today, there are more than seven billion IoT devices, and that number is expected to grow to 22 billion devices by 2025.
As universal as IoT technology is becoming, there are still a number of barriers that prevent companies from fully embracing IoT’s potential.
How to overcome barriers to adopting IoT technology
For some companies, the chief aversion to adopting IoT technology is simply that it’s new and not the way things have always been done, a fatalistic point of view. However, many top executives have valid concerns about allowing technology to “take over” certain aspects of the business. Commonly heard objections include:
1. Security. Security is a valid concern when dealing with internet-enabled devices. No matter how secure the technology, there remains at least a small risk of information being intercepted by criminals. Implementing security measures like biometrics for access to the system, adding encryption, and working with a skilled IoT consulting firm can greatly lessen this risk.
2. Network connectivity problems. Internet-enabled devices are only as good as your weakest Internet connection. Going offline can interrupt your manufacturing line and your profits. Most organizations that use IoT technology have a centralized, server/client paradigm to authenticate, authorize, and connect different nodes in a network. This solution, however, may not be sufficient as the number of IoT devices continues to grow.
3. Compatibility issues. Since IoT technology is growing so quickly, there is no one international standard governing how devices connect to one another. While that should be less of a problem as IoT technology matures, it can still be an issue. A lot of compatibility problems arise from using IoT devices from a variety of manufacturers. You can solve most of these issues by sticking with a single manufacturer. Again, a good IoT consultant can be useful in helping you choose the manufacturer with the devices that best suit your company’s needs.
4. Lack of resources to handle and analyze data. IoT devices generate a lot of data, and that requires a human to help make sense of all of that information. This is where an IoT integrator can be invaluable, both in setting up analytics and in digesting and condensing the information.
For many businesses, IoT can bring about a paradigm shift, and you should expect it to take some time for your IT department to ramp up. Integrators like ClearObject can help to accelerate IoT adoption, improve outcomes, and reduce risk. As a business partner, ClearObject’s job doesn’t end when the technology is up and running. The dedicated team stays engaged, monitoring the system, maintaining it, and upgrading it when needed. This continued engagement reduces the security risk and can prevent operational hiccups and compatibility issues.
ClearObject is an IoT solutions company with the stated mission of “helping the world’s best companies build intelligence into their products and gain intelligence from them.” Founded in 2010, the Indianapolis company specializes in creating customized IoT solutions for businesses of all sizes. The company understands the unique challenges and opportunities of working with IoT technology and can formulate and bring to fruition innovative IoT solutions without running up against these common barriers. ClearObject recently became a Google Cloud Premier Partner, has been recognized several times as an IBM Analytics Champion and has been twice awarded “CRN” magazine’s Solution Provider 500 honor.