The Internet of Things is changing more than how we set security alarms or adjust our thermostats. The intuitive technology is already changing the home and workplace as we know it, and modifying human behavior as a result. Building upon a base of technology that has rapidly evolved over the past half-decade, IoT is transforming consumer and enterprise spaces with connectivity once reserved for science fiction.
Some analysts predict that by 2020, 200 billion IoT-connected devices will be in use. At the forefront of this push is developers. To keep up with current and predicted demand, IoT developers will be asked to look at technology in a more connected way than ever before. In many ways, the rules for Internet of Things operation are still being written and developers will heavily guide what the technology looks like in another 5 years and beyond.
Developers for Consumer IoT
Internet of Things endeavors will result in more automation of tasks for consumers. IoT and robotics technology, and the data it reports, will shine a light on areas that can benefit from automation software. The vast amounts of data collected due to IoT connectivity and subsequent robotic analytics solutions enhance the ability of consumers to make decisions with a wider understanding of what they actually need. When they realize what they need, consumers will want to be able to make adjustments in their behavior with the push of a button.
Developers with consumer IoT products in mind will need to combine usefulness with ease of actual use. Consumers are already so accustomed to intuitive technology and won’t want to backtrack on the comfort level they already possess. It will be up to IoT developers to make the more sophisticated tech of IoT feel like the tech consumers use right now. Like much of the technology consumers take for granted today, complicated developer code will need to power it for optimal success.
Developers for Business IoT
Much IoT talk centers on consumer uses but there is actually a lot of potential for enterprise applications too. Human resource departments can tap the power of IoT to help their employees live better, healthier lives. Hiring managers can better recruit employees through connected simulation experiences. And of course, more tasks will be automated as a result of a connected workplace. The potential of IoT as it relates to businesses is vast and can positively impact employees and their productivity.
When it comes to enterprise IoT, a connected app concept will come into play — interconnecting devices and systems to produce a holistic solution. As you can imagine, this will prove challenging for developers. There are many things to consider — from the safety/security of enterprise data to user-friendly delivery of the applications. Most enterprise IoT users won’t be developers so they’ll need a seamless experience that reminds them of their sophisticated, but easy-to-use, personal devices. This will require a lot of cohesion creation from developers who will need to fill in the blanks where consumer IoT devices fall short.
Brands like UPS are already using the IoT for tracking deliveries and streamlining their operations. In the future, they will rely on self-driving trucks. Uber recently used a self-driving truck to make a delivery.
There’s also the issue of how enterprise IoT products will operate. In the case of consumers, IoT use will rely heavily on Wi-Fi and home internet connections. When it comes to enterprise applications, though, there are a myriad of other choices available. Developers will be building for IoT software that communicates through Bluetooth LE, SDK, “over the wire” methods, and more. It will take more work, but the implications of the Internet of Things for enterprise use will highlight the important role developers are playing in an ever more connected business place.
When it comes to IoT, the ball is in the proverbial developer court. The big ideas surrounding IoT use for home and enterprise purposes already exist, but need developer know-how to see actual execution. The potential for IoT is still wide open — and developers can really make their mark on the technology in the coming years.