Ultimate List of 30 IoT Platforms You Must Try in 2018
Looking for the best IoT platform to help you on your next project? Check out this post with the top 30 IoT platforms.
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The Internet of Things has shown steady growth for some time, and experts say that this growth won’t be slowing down anytime soon. Gartner predicts that about 20 billion devices will be connected to the IoT by 2020. The development of the related technologies and sorting out the challenges that still exist for the relatively new IoT field can boost the mass adoption of the technology even further.
One of the problems with IoT is the sheer number of different devices you can connect to each other. Different connection protocols make it very difficult to manage a network of those devices. Not to mention that besides connecting to those devices (by the way, securely) you need to get the information from them, store it, process it, and analyze it somehow.
That’s where the IoT platforms come in. They usually cover all of those bases for you. To make it simple, the IoT platform is a middleware between the devices and user applications. In fact, they may more than just simply connecting your IoT devices together.
It is pretty hard to pick the right IoT platform that would fit your purposes as you need to look not only the things you need right now but consider the possibility of an upgrade and what directions the platform is going in the future. Not to mention that the “right now” part is also pretty tricky, as the range of services and features different platforms provide might differ.
Let’s go through a list of popular IoT platforms that are on the market today.
Google Cloud IoT
Of course, this IT giant couldn’t pass by this part of the IT world. Their solution supports both cloud and edge computing, providing reliable and secure storage of data. This makes it easy to apply the Google infrastructure in your project. This includes Cloud Machine Learning, BigQuery, and other services for storing, analyzing, and visualizing the data from your sensors. The Google IoT platform supports other services that became industry standards, i.e. automatic and custom firmware updates, secure connections, etc.
For quite a bit of time, Amazon was the leader among IoT platforms. And, it remains a strong player today. Offering a great solution for a project of any size, AWS IoT throws in the native integration with the rich Amazon ecosystem. Amazon’s platform is not designed for a specific industry, but it has magnificent scalability and customization potential.
Microsoft Azure IoT
Microsoft is another IT giant who plays their part in the IoT market. Their platform can support a very large number of devices as it, too, makes a great emphasis on scalability. Other strong points of the Microsoft platform are strong security measures, high reliability with 99.95 percent of uptime reliability. Microsoft also offers cost-effectiveness choices as you can buy additional services as you need them.
IBM Watson IoT
The IBM Watson (previously known as Bluemix) IoT platform offers an advanced integration with machine learning capabilities. IBM’s platform is actually very friendly — even to the third-party feature you want to implement in your project. Their AI technology is also one of the best on the market. IBM tries to support IoT developers by providing tools for easy and fast application development.
When you mention Oracle, everybody knows you are talking about an expert in databases and cloud computing. So, if you are looking for a platform that would get the data from your devices, analyze it quickly, and provide you with a real-time picture of your system, the Oracle IoT platform is a good choice. The security measures are also a strong part of this platform. It is integrated with other Oracle services to make developing your project much easier.
SalesForce IoT platform is a specialized platform for customer relations management. It runs on AWS infrastructure and helps businesses to optimize their performance in sales, customer support, ordering repairs, and marketing. The big plus of this platform is its availability. Even people without a background in development can easily create their own apps with the tools SalesForce gives them.
Bosch IoT Suite is an all-around, good IoT platform with a German approach to security and reliability. They offer their secure server for information storage but also support the on-site data storage. This platform allows the developers to deploy the prototype application very quickly. The platform is reported to be pretty cost-effective.
ThingsIO provides a full set of services the IoT platform is supposed to have. It helps you with connecting, managing and testing IoT sensors and devices, collect and store the data, visualize it, and apply machine learning algorithms for data analytics. ThingsIO works with Raspberry Pi, Node MCU, and ESP8266. It has a strong alert, rule and report engine, and a dashboard creator (you can share dashboards and data between projects or share it with your customers).
The Cisco IoT solution has all the standard features for the big IoT platform. They cover everything from smart homes and smart cities, to retail, education, and industry. They also keep a close watch on their security apparatus, so you can be sure the data in your IoT project would remain secure at every step. Cisco has a good infrastructure for projects of any scale and provide advisory services for their clients.
The Thingworx platform has been on the market for quite some time by now. It provides solid tools for connecting and managing the IoT devices, building dashboards, and providing security and DevOps services. It also supports both cloud, edge, and on-site architectures. Of course, a good IoT platform is unimaginable without at least some sort of data analytics engine, and Thingworx helps to gather and analyze data, search for patterns and anomalies in the data, and help with building well-informed predictions on that basis.
Kaa is an open-source IoT platform that supports big and small projects. Either you want to build a smart thermostat or you need an enterprise-grade solution, you can find both with Kaa. It uses a microservices architecture to keep your projects scalable and simplify the customization and deployment of your applications. Kaa supports a number of programming languages and IoT protocols, so you can connect different devices and build your project in your favorite language. Kaa also provides the enterprise-grade scalability, durability, cluster management, and security.
Samsung Artik IoT platform covers not only the software side of the IoT development but also offers some hardware to optimize your system. They have a range of modules both for smart homes solutions and high-end gateways with processing and analytical power to ease the bandwidth and computation load for big IoT projects. These hardware solutions include inbuilt security measures and are pre-certified to reduce the time of getting your project to the market. Artik also supports managing your device fleet, data analytics, and visualization.
HPE Universal IoT
Hewlett Packard rolled out their IoT platform not so long ago, but it already has all the features of as solid IoT platform. Built in compliance with oneM2M standards, this device-agnostic platform offers great scalability and allows you to manage millions of devices. Their application design includes a partner-oriented layer for secure management of developers and partners. Universal can be deployed both on-premises or a cloud.
DataV is a hybrid IoT platform that is designed for industrial companies. It collects and analyzes data from connected devices to help with optimization and automation of industrial equipment. It also helps to predict the faults of that equipment, issue the repairs, and help technicians to get to the root of the problem. The idea is reducing the time needed for maintenance, thus improving the uptime of business-critical equipment. DataV can also work in conjunction with AWS and Microsoft Azure.
Another industry-oriented IoT platform, MindSphere focuses on reducing the downtime of critical equipment. It allows the secure and scalable connectivity (both cloud and edge) of IoT devices, helps to gather data, and uses advanced analytics to produce actionable insights into your business. Additionally, it can integrate AWS services into your project.
Ayla Networks IoT
Ayla Networks is an end-to-end platform that describes itself as agile IoT. Their primary focus is on the speed of the project’s deployment. This platform manages its devices through ‘digital twin‘ technology and allows for rule management, setting data policies, and over-the-air updates of your hardware. Ayla Networks also supports a wide range of the protocols to connect as many different devices as you need.
SmartWorks IoT (previously known as Carriots) is an Altair IoT platform. By combining their computer-aided engineering knowledge with the Carriots platform, they provide the full product lifecycle management. SmartWorks works both with cloud and edge architectures and helps with data aggregation, streaming, analytics (using machine learning), visualization, and provides security according to the industry standards.
General Electric’s IoT platform is, of course, focused first and foremost on industrial applications. GE is one of the co-founders of the Industrial Internet Consortium, which puts them on the cutting edge of new developments in industrial IoT. Predix's main goal is optimizing the systems it is used in by making a detailed model out of it and helping on every stage: from small parts to the entire system itself. It is designed to analyze and efficiently transfer huge volumes of data from assets to edge devices, cloud, etc.
Pelion is IoT platform that has a nice infrastructure of other ARM products to help you use the platform that will meet your needs. Either you need to simply test your device for compliance with industry standards or build a solution for a hundred IoT devices, or built a robust, distributed IoT system, you can use the products you need for that. They also have hardware solutions to solve connectivity, security and other issues. They try to make the idea of connecting any number of any devices into reality.
LTI’s Mosaic is a platform that works in combination with the industry's biggest name: AWS, Azure, Bluemix. The company even won the Partner of the Year Award for App Innovation in 2018. Their IoT platform allows businesses in many sectors implement the IoT system to make business decisions much faster. Mosaic has more than thirty specific business-oriented accelerators to boost the performance of manufacturers, financial companies and a number of other fields.
Mocana IoT Platform
Mocana’s IoT platform is somewhat special. While some platforms try to be customized for a specific industry, architecture, or some other aspect of IoT, Mocana specializes purely on security. One of the biggest issues with the whole IoT is its security. Unfortunately, a lot of devices are very easy to hack and that is a big problem for the industry. Mocana focuses on everything security-related. They provide embedded security software for different chipsets and operating systems, secure authentication, cryptography, trusted connectivity, and reliable data transfer. While other platforms provide their own security measures, not a lot of them go as far as Mocana.
ThingSpeak IoT platform
This IoT platform is working closely with the MatLab, a more famous product of the MathWorks company. Because of that, ThingSpeak has great analytical powers and helps its clients achieve a near-real-time analysis of data from hundreds of sensors. The platform is used in various consulting and smart city solutions.
SiteWhere is an open IoT platform. It supports multiple communication protocols, including MQTT, AMQP, Stomp, and others. You also can integrate third-party services into your project. SiteWhere works with Azure, Apache, and other service providers. The platform helps with the device and asset management, and also has a multitenancy support for your project. You can share the data with multiple applications, create separate data storage for the tenants, etc.
Another open-source platform, DeviceHive provides the opportunities for both start-ups and enterprise-grade application. It has advanced deployment options, with the support of Docker and Kubernetes, DeviceHive can be deployed on both public, hybrid, or private cloud. It supports WebSocket and MQTT protocols and you can connect the devices with the REST API. This platform supports the most popular big data tools.
Mainflux is another open-source platform. It supports a number of connectivity options, including the key protocols: CoAP, MQTT, WebSocket, and REST API. It supports several programming languages, over-the-air updates, secure TLS, and DTLS. It also supports the deployment via Docker.
Supporting the most popular communication protocols, ThingsBoard is standard, all-rounder open IoT platform. It will help you collect and store sensor data, define algorithms to process a big amount of data, and set up rules on how the platform should react. You can set triggers for actions to happen when a platform gets certain readings and alarms to get off if necessary. The ThingsBoard also has a pretty nice means to create dashboards and the rules engine can be used by people with little to no programming experience.
Zetta is a node.js based platform that doesn’t have fancy visualization capabilities, but that’s because its primary goal is assembling applications that run in real-time on the cloud, geographically distributed computers, or a single machine. The basic principles of the platform are the focus on the APIs and fast and reliable streaming of big amounts of data. It can be used with third-party analysis platforms to process the data you get.
Distributed Services Architecture is built with decentralization as a primary focus. This IoT platform consists of services that are arranged in a tiered architecture. The developers hope to make IoT systems more modular and scalable on different levels and optimize the processing powers of all links in the network, from edge devices to data centers.
Thinger.io is an open-source platform for cloud IoT solutions. The applications can be launched from their cloud or a third-party choice. It is simplified by using the container deployment via Docker. Thinger supports the most popular microcontroller hardware: Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Edison, ESP8266. Thinger’s applications are pretty easy to develop. It also has nice real-time dashboards functionality.
This IoT platform provides a full package of services for those who need them. In addition to the standard connecting and managing devices via the most popular connection protocols, it has analytics servers that provide real-time streaming analytics. It also supports edge architecture to bring the basic computation to a local edge device or a gateway. It provides API for integrations with other services and applications.
At first glance, it might seem that all IoT platforms are basically the same because there’s a list of somewhat standard things an IoT platform should do. But if you dig deeper, there are always some nuances that make the specific IoT platform either unsuitable or perfect for your project.
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