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Internet of Things (IoT), or the connected ecosystem of devices, apps and digital platforms, is increasingly influencing every walk of life. But just as remote control devices work for traditional gadgets, mobile apps offer the control mechanism for all the connected devices. No wonder mobile apps are placed in the very center of IoT révolution now.
Here we will explain the key considerations, essential things to know and critical steps in building IoT apps. But let’s begin with the basics.
Critical Components of Internet of Things (IoT)
Internet of Things (IoT) is made up of three constituent components or three interconnected parts. Let’s briefly explain them.
As of now, most of us know how cloud servers allow us to save our data remotely and process them in case of need. Cloud storage and cloud computing support enable IoT devices to access and process data contextually as per operational necessity. Cloud storage and computing support take the load off from the apparatus while helping smooth operation.
Network refers to the connection keeping various device systems and remote cloud servers connected for systematic and streamlined processing of data resulting in smooth operation.
The ‘things’ referring to the connected devices ultimately facilitates the intended operation or functionality to get things done. The related things are at the very center of the Internet of Things.
Different Levels of IoT
When it comes to implementation, Internet of things (IoT) technology is deployed over four different levels. Most of the IoT systems, instead of covering the entire spectrum of all these levels, remain limited to just one or two groups. Let’s have a look at four levels of the IoT.
The device deals with the collection of data while staying connected through the internet. The devices range from simple sensors to specialized hardware for connected operational purposes.
The software and the data infrastructure facilitating operation play a key role in transmitting data and storage. A cloud platform is what makes this possible.
After the data is processed through the cloud platform, the same can be organized and put under the analytics to have a deeper understanding of the underlying data-driven insights.
The last level for IoT implementation is the end-user. This is the level most app developers focus upon and try to ensure operational ease with the connected device.
Steps in Building IoT Apps
Now that you have an understanding of the constituent parts and the way IoT works, let us discuss how to create an app from scratch for IoT.
Here we go.
Select the Ideal Platform
First, you need to choose the appropriate platform. Consider widely acclaimed IoT specific platforms such as Ubidots, Xively or Thingworx. By choosing any of these platforms, you can get rid of the difficulties of doing everything on your right from the scratch.
Choose the specific industry niche
You can build Internet of Things apps for different industries. From consumer appliances to workplace devices to smart automotive devices to connected public infrastructure systems, the choice is huge.
Choose the right hardware
Either you can build an IoT app for your own branded hardware system, or you need to build the app for other smart devices in the market. The hardware should perfectly sync with the particular needs of connected devices. On the other hand, make sure the hardware device is highly reliable and ensures optimum accuracy of connection.
Ensure scalability right from the start
To make your app stay relevant over time, it is extremely important to make it highly scalable. You must ensure that it remains capable of managing huge amounts of data besides extending to a lot of devices and platforms as the demand scales up. This is why to ensure optimum scalability most IoT apps rely on cloud computing.
Ensure optimum speed and performance
A crucial requirement for any IoT app is fast-paced performance and lightning-fast loading speed. The app must respond to user commands without the slightest delay and should not frustrate users with a slow response.
Focus on data and network security
An increasing number of cyber threats and malicious data breaching attempts are now originating from IoT devices, and hence security should be a top priority for any IoT app project. Since a lot of connected devices remain continuously alive on a single network, there is a bigger scope of data infringement with IoT apps.
IoT apps dealing with highly sensitive private and personal data of people through the smart home, smart vehicle, and healthcare gadgets are more exposed to security risks than other apps.
Let’s mention here some useful tips to strengthen the security of IoT apps.
- Choose only reliable hardware to ensure it doesn’t expose your app to security vulnerabilities.
- Only go for tried and tested IoT platforms that test all their tools rigorously and update them frequently.
- Make sure all data stored locally in the devices are encrypted to rêvent physical access to device data or remove the data.
- Use a highly protected cloud network that uses proper encryption methods for storage and data transmission.
- Lastly, always make sure to implement best security practices for the app that include data encryption, multifactor authentication, obfuscation to prevent unauthorized access.
The Internet of Things through a multitude of connected and smart devices in homes, workplaces, vehicles, public places, and entertainment arenas practically became one of the key technologies to equip everyday life with full proof and meaningful digital interactions.
Naturally, IoT apps will continue to hold new opportunities for creatively inclined developers all over the globe. But to cement your success as an IoT app developer, it is important to stay rooted in the principles and practices we mentioned above.
Author Bio: Vincent Martinot is a Managing Director of EurecaApps an App Development Company. They have developed different types of mobile apps for different businesses. He is an active writer and In his leisure time, he loves to write informative blogs on different aspects of app development.