Dream of Connected World

IoT: Chasing the Dream of Connected World

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Kavitha Gopalan

Internet of things or IOT is moving from buzzword to a reality. It is finding its niche in sectors like home automation, health care, automobile and in various industrial sectors. Based on various surveys its expected that the connected devices market could grow from 14 billion devices today to the range of 50-100 billion connected devices by 2020. This would be a massive growth. There is no doubt that billions of connected devices will redefine the way we live our lives through the concept of connected homes, connected vehicles to connect cities. There are some challenges in IOT that has to be addressed for faster adoption and to make this dream a reality.

1. Enormous amount of data

IOT involves collection of massive amount sensor/actuator generated data . All this data needs to be stored in cloud. Management and maintenance of this amount of large data can get complicated. Another aspect is the data retention. How long and how much of this data will be retained should be thought and planned.

2. Privacy Concern

IOT’s intend is to design a smart intelligent devices that could act without or with minimal human intervention, For this the collected data should be shared, processed and analyzed . Some of this data carries personal and private information like user information, behavioral patterns, likes & dislikes, health information and so on. This data, at wrong hands could be fatal. So the question lingers in the minds of consumers, who is using my data and how is it used and is my data safe. Protecting the privacy of the data collected is one of the top challenges to be tackled.

3. Security

IOT, where billions of devices are connected on the internet is prone to security hacks. This could result in the misuse of both personal and corporate data. Most of the IOT devices that are available today are vulnerable to security threats. Data breaches are costly affairs. As per the Global Analysis, the average consolidated total cost of a data breach is $3.8 million – a 23 percent increase since 2013. Building security at every layer of the IOT system is important .

4. Interoperability

Next challenge is interoperability. When we come to the implementation there is no unified standard for IOT that is universally followed. This creates lot of confusion and complexity. There are multiple platforms, numerous protocols and numerous APIs. For example there are multiple communication protocols , each end device from different vendor has its own standard Bluetooth ,Zigbee, Ziwave, 6LoWPAN, 2G/3G/4G/LTE,BLE ,WiFi. The challenge is making these work together when they don’t follow a single standard. There are different bodies working to develop a standard framework for IOT like ALLJoyn Allseen Alliance , Open Interconnect Consortium , Industrial Internet Consortium which could help reduce the complexity in the system.

IOT has the true potential to shape human life. But these major challenges should be resolved for hassle free and quicker adoption of this technology across industries. The next wave of disruptive innovation is bound to happen in this technology space as consumers adopt this technology and we move towards a truly connected world.

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