The Internet of Things (IoT), under the influence of several exclusive technologies
Q) In your opinion, which are the top 3 technologies that are shaping the future of IoT? How are they influencing the future of IoT?
According to me, the top 3 technologies that are shaping the future of IoT are:
- NarrowBand-Internet of Things (NB-IoT): NarrowBand-Internet of Things (NB-IoT) which is a standards-based low power wide area (LPWA) technology. NB-IOT has many advantages like lower power consumption with a battery life of more than 10 years, efficient spectrum utilisation and higher system capacity compared to Cellular technologies
- AI/ML: Internet of Things(IoT) to Evolution of Things (EoT) is what AI/MI will be able to achieve by providing not just Descriptive Analytics(Insights into the past) but also Predictive Analytics(Understanding the Future) and Prescriptive Analytics(Advise on possible outcomes)
- Blockchain as the backend technology for IoT: Using Blockchain with IoT means better Security and Trust, no point of failure as it is decentralized with no controlling power and maintain complete records of all transactions
Q) How’s the development of standards (or lack of it) affecting the adoption of IoT?
IoT solutions are used in so many different verticals with each of them having different safety and security standards. This is hampering the adoption of IoT and making it difficult for a global IoT standard to emerge. For IoT growth we need IoT devices to interoperate and communicate using standard application programming interfaces(APIs). We need to involve all the stakeholders i.e. industry, government and policy makers to come forward and make these standards a top priority for the IoT growth.
Q) How ready is India’s tech eco-system to develop and deploy IoT solutions?
We are not 100 per cent ready to deploy IoT solutions. We have a vast pool of talent available with design and programming expertise and low cost of connectivity. What we lack is the manufacturing prowess to develop our own microcontroller chips, sensors and other electronic components that are affordable and an ecosystem that can nurture creativity and innovation. Moreover, the time it takes to convert an idea-prototype-product is twice longer compared to US and China. There is great opportunity for entrepreneurs to bridge this gap.
Q) Do you foresee India’s tech industry developing its own IP and branded products/solutions in the IoT arena?
Yes, there are many companies that are already doing it. Telebeacon has already built the following solutions:
- World’s first integrated GPS and indoor positioning system (Patent Pending)
- Telebeacon 360 degrees perimeter intrusion detection systems with real-time tracking of the intruder (Provisional Patent)
Q) Do you see the Open Source phenomenon plays an important role in the IoT arena?
Open Source technologies and tools play a key role in accelerating the development of IoT solutions because of the availability of the following:
- A secured and robust framework
- A high pool of talent
- An online community to co-create
- Faster development time
Q) What’s your opinion on the state of security available for IoT solutions? How do you see the evolution from hereon w.r.t threats and counter-measures?
The security of IoT devices need a lot of improvement. There are issues like man-in-the-middle (mitm) attacks, denial-of-service (DoS) attacks, malware in counterfeit microcontrollers and lack of standards are some of the security challenges currently plaguing the development of IoT solutions.
One way to address this is by using Public-Key Infrastructure (PKI) Security. The current PKI technologies are too heavy for resource-constrained IoT devices. So the solution providers use PKIs to provide digital certificates in the gateways. The drawback with this approach is that if the gateway is compromised then the whole network falls prey. But with the advancement of powerful microcontrollers, it is possible to use PKIs in the end devices to support end-to-end security.
Q) W.r.t. edge vs cloud–where do you think will we see faster development in the next year or two?
Edge and cloud computing complement each other, serve different application scenarios and not in competition with each other. Businesses prefer edge over cloud because of reduced latency, increased reliability, better security (less transfer of sensitive data between devices and cloud) and more cost-effective. Edge will see faster development in the next couple of years.
Q) What are the key technologies missing, which when made available, will accelerate the adoption of IoT across the globe?
Only a few devices support PKI and IPV6. The length of an IPv6 address is 128 bits (2128Adresses) compared with 32 bits (232Adresses) in IPv4. IPv6 is more secure, highly scalable and support address self-configuration mechanism (a stateless mechanism). Availability of Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Technology and IPv6 will accelerate the adoption of IoT.
Q) Any thoughts on where to go edge versus where to go cloud?
Go for Edge when processing mission-critical, time-sensitive data with limited connectivity and go for Cloud when processing that is either not as time-sensitive or is not needed by the device.