Fusing Cloud and the Internet of Things


 Oleksandr Matviishyn is a Software Engineer at SoftServe, Inc. He has 4 years of experience in mobile, web and cross – platform development. Being involved in researches related to mobile and cutting edge technologies, Oleksandr also works with Healthcare, Enterprise and Security oriented solutions.

As connecting means, computing power, storage and devices miniaturization become pervasive. The Internet of Things (IoT) solutions are rising in value conquering today’s market and engaging both personal sphere and enterprise. The IoT technology positioned itself as the most current trend in the software industry.

If we take a look at other trends in the software development field, each of them either produces new platforms or modifies the existing ones; while the initial steps of the IoT were focused on creating self-sufficient smart devices and smart boards (like Arduino or Raspberry Pi) with a range of various attached sensors. Now it’s time to share and store all this data from numerous sensors and devices: it’s time to think about communication and backend capabilities.

Does the IoT Really Need Backend?

The IoT market evolution leads to an increased number of ready solutions. When the software development industry was focused on manufacturing and producing “smart enough” hardware, the majority of manufacturers tried to produce a whole stack of cloud services. As a result, we got a load of inconsistency issues and lack of standardization across the cloud solutions.

As the industry develops, the need for a standard communication model for common tasks (like storage, high processing, etc.) becomes inevitable. If we take a look at the mobile industry with requirements in portability, interoperability, and manageability, without standards it is almost impossible to achieve communication at a proper level.

The first steps in standardization of transport level are covered by MQTT and XMPP protocols. But this is not enough to complete the IoT backend layer. Unfortunately, more complex services such as device management, file share, and storage that will hitch on general IoT backend functionality are missing for now.

IoT Platform as a Service (PaaS)

Today, backend services are becoming crucial elements of the IoT solutions, which could be categorized as an extension of general PaaS solutions for mobiles created not so long ago. The key elements for IoT PaaS will be identical to the already usual for us mobile ones:

  • Mobile device management (MDM)
  • Analytics in Real-time
  • Integration with the enterprise systems
  • Extending the existing platforms

The IoT Cloud Computing

One of the best options to handle an increasing number of the IoT devices with massive unpredicted data generated from every device is cloud computing. With the possibility of auto provisioning devices (without human interaction), clouds could create an “infinite” computing capacity and a great potential for expanding the existing solutions.

For now, one of the weakest parts of the IoT devices is computing power and storage. With cloud, it could be simply eliminated. All the extensive data from your IoT solution (for example, energy saving solution for warehouses, where a number of connected devices simply could be greater than 1k) can be stored and analyzed using the existing big data solutions. This business intelligence allows predictive cloud to grow. To support this statement, in 2013 IBM deployed such a solution in the Australian Open to use the generated data for analysis and predictions.

Conclusion

Today, devices are getting smarter and all of them become a part of the Internet of Things. With the IoT everyday life will become safer and better, and the IoT cloud solutions are a great tool for this. Give it a go!

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