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Gartner Identifies Key Internet of Things Technologies through 2018

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In a recent report, Gartner identifies the top 10 Internet of Things (IoT) technologies through 2018. Subtitled "Ten Technologies That Will Enable Organizations to Unlock the Full Potential of the IoT," the report highlights specific IoT technologies that are expected to highly impact organizations working on IoT systems.

Gartner analyst and VP Nick Jones called attention to problems relating to the immaturity of today's IoT technologies and services: "Architecting for this immaturity and managing the risk it creates will be a key challenge for organizations exploiting the IoT." Jones said the shortage of people with IoT skills "will also pose significant challenges."

The IoT technologies identified in the report are:

  • IoT Security: addressing physical tampering and network-based attacks on devices, encryption of communications, and "denial-of-sleep attacks that drain batteries"
  • IoT Analytics: the means for analyzing the collected IoT data in a manner that produces useful information
  • IoT Device (Thing) Management: the need to monitor devices, provide software updates, diagnose problems, and maintain security, along with physical management
  • Low-Power, Short-Range IoT Networks: the problems inherent in balancing conflicting network requirements "such as range, battery life, bandwidth, density, endpoint cost and operational cost."
  • Low-Power, Wide-Area Networks: the use of mobile networks, which presently are designed for human communication; addressing the IoT requirement (delivering data from hundreds of thousands of devices for a small price per device) is still in the very early stages.
  • IoT Processors: the ability of potential processors and architectures to meet the IoT requirements of strong security, encryption, low power consumption, firmware and OS upgrade capability
  • IoT Operating Systems: the need for new IoT-specific operating systems that offer small memory footprints and guaranteed real-time response
  • Event Stream Processing: distributed stream computing platforms (DSCPs), which "use parallel architectures to process very high-rate data streams to perform tasks such as real-time analytics and pattern identification."
  • IoT Platforms: platforms that bundle sets of IoT infrastructure components and services
  • IoT Standards and Ecosystems: "Standards and their associated APIs will be essential because IoT devices will need to interoperate and communicate, and many IoT business models will rely on sharing data between multiple devices and organizations."

Commenting at ZDNet on the 10 technologies the report identifies, Liam Tung observed that "Wherever you look, Google is all over them."

No matter the technology risk that businesses are looking to address, it's likely they will run into Google, whether it's for analytics, networks, or operating systems... Google appears five times across the top 10 technologies in Gartner's analysis.

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Angus Loten notes that while "the shaky economy and uncertain global markets are taking a toll on corporate IT spending, resulting in slashed technology budgets and job cuts... Gartner predicts global spending on the Internet of Things to jump by 22% in 2016... It expects the bulk of the gains to be driven by business spending on external services to design, install and operate IoT systems."

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