The Internet of Things could be the biggest software development and testing opportunity of all time. Though devices such as tablets, phones, and wearables may already seem global, the IoT is a vast, networked array of sensors and embedded systems. It can eventually scale down all of them in its global reach and number of services and applications.
Nevertheless, when the pandemic has pushed all the industries to reprioritize their plans and projects, IoT tend to appear to go on back foot. However, the stats and figures associated the world of IoT have something different to say.
According to the reports, IoT has turned to the reason for assured business continuity for almost 84 percent of the organizations. This increases the scope of rapid IoT testing with the purpose to generate business value. Besides, the two primary areas of focus of these testing strategies needs to be bringing new products to the market and improving the operational efficiency.
With this blog, we will try to help you build a complete perspective on the future of the Internet of Things testing while diving through the possible expectations, the challenges associating the IoT implementation. Besides, we will try to highlight the process involved in an IoT test strategy and finding answers on how it can help future proof business scenarios.
Expectations From IoT In The Next Few Years
Since the concept of IoT is a highly futuristic concept, the expectations associating IoT in the upcoming years are huge. And most of these are related to implementing IoT technology for streamlining business operations. Some of these can be highlighted as:
Improved Retail Industry
The maximum call for embracing IoT comes directly from the retail industry. From working on operational management to supply chain and logistics, the use of IoT chips seems to be something redefining the entire dynamics of retail industry. From identifying defects to shipping issues, IoT can be leveraged in retail industry to improve everything that can add value to tracking and monitoring process for improved operational efficiency and rich customer experience with big cost savings.
Optimized Revenue Streams
The next big thing that IoT tend to do is optimize revenue streams for every industry, right from manufacturing to anything like Electricity and Utilities. The use of IoT sensors for monitoring the operations could help businesses to continue with ease simplifying the process of tracking the areas of fault. Besides, IoT could help manage the energy efficiency requirements since the data produced from the sensors could be regulated to meet the qualitative aspect of any business process.
The Healthcare Imperative
Since the world has realized importance of healthcare with the extreme uncertainty that the pandemic has called, the idea of transforming healthcare perspective has huge scope for IoT implementation. From growing volume of patients to managing the ratio of doctors to patients, IoT has the potential to improve the process.
In short, IoT in healthcare could offer added accessibility to caregiver facilities, doctors, and of course the patients. Besides, Internet of Things for medical industry could help patients to access immediate healthcare during critical scenarios.
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IoT Brings New Challenges, And That Too At An Extraordinary Scale
When it comes to IoT, there are 5C’s involved in the process that could possess a real challenge to the developers as well as testers. These include Compliance, Connectivity, Continuity, Co-existence, and Cyber Security. Let us explore them in a detail to understand better:
Compliance: IoT devices need to adhere to global regulatory and compliance requirements which usually requires compliance testing to work on radio standards conformance and carrier acceptance testing. Since it is a complex and consuming process, design engineers often have to struggle with smooth market launches. Though investing in pre-compliance test procedures could help improve the design stage, the risk of failure and aligning measurement correlation are major compliance challenges associated with IoT.
Connectivity: The next important challenge that IoT brings to the design and testing teams is the connectivity. Since IoT needs a smooth flow of data from device to cloud and related applications, establishing wireless connectivity often becomes difficult at the deployment stage. Besides, the rapidly changing wireless standards make it more complex to meet the connectivity goals. Thus, solving connectivity issues demand extensive flexibility on assessing the varying radio formats, the need for making it simple and cost-effective often bothers the teams working on IoT products.
Continuity: When we talk about IoT devices for industrial purposes, these are the solutions that need to offer extensive battery life (at least 5 to 10 years). For instance, medical equipment and devices like pacemakers could possess a life and death difference when it comes to battery performance. Since providing an edge on battery to consumers need extensive investment of resources on IC integrations and design research, aligning the sensing, processing, communication, and firmware to respond well on battery levels could get overwhelming.
Coexistence: Since there are billions of devices sending transmission or receiving signals over radio frequencies, congestion is another common challenge that IoT Testing Services need to overcome. Though there are techniques like CCA and LBT that are made to avoid collision, to yield effectiveness in the mixed-signal environment could bother testers. Though Coexistence testing can help testers to assess the risks, the unintended signals entering the operating environment could make things difficult.
Cyber Security: Though the existing security practices have everything it takes to prevent network and cloud issues, the OTA or over-the-air risks can possess cyber security challenges to the IoT device. Since IDC reports seventy percent breaches from endpoints, planning on cyber security testing could enable teams to create more stable software and device designs to avoid any entry or end point threats.
Importance of IoT Testing: Why is it Needed?
Since IoT needs real-time transfer of data to process operations, any kind of liabilities on performance could damage the entire function. It can be anything like a compromised node that can make the system cripple or any glitches in the software that hinders the performance of the entire network.
Nevertheless, Internet of Things testing when worked with precision, could help avoid unexpected glitches and identify any weak nodes of the network that should be fixed to create a smooth end-user experience. Besides, IoT testing could be help you learn about the vulnerabilities that you may encounter with IoT devices, especially those related to cyber security and data privacy. As hackers always look for ways to alter the process involved in a IoT network to take control, testing the device for updates could help avoid any uncertainties.
As IoT systems are fragmented hardware, software, and network, the complications related to the testing process could be worked by establishing large testing groups who can explore all the components for their reliability on different platforms and devices.
In a nutshell, making an IoT application work as per the defined requirements and objectives need dedicated IoT testing services. However, the product owners, developers, testers, and any other executive leading a collaborative effort on IoT deployment could stick with a few factors to ensure maximum productivity:
- Start with establishing a reliable connection of IoT devices in order to create a unified experience for the users.
- Continuity should be the primary goal throughout the entire IoT deployment process.
- Make sure you always stick to the compliance regulations and standards guidelines.
- It is essential that all devices on IoT network should connect well and work seamlessly.
- Data protection should be kept at focus to avoid malware threats or cyber-attacks.
The Various Stages of IoT Software Testing for Rapid Releases
When it comes to IoT software testing, meeting the goals related to performance and customer experience need extensive focus and effort. Above all, when the market is already flooded with so many IoT devices, offering something extraordinary to customers is the primary objective of any organization working on IoT. Therefore, we have tried accommodating the various stages of IoT software testing that could help improve the release cycle for added productivity during and after the release:
As IoT systems are made after multiple hardware and software configurations, the primary step to target for IoT testing should began with running compatibility tests. This process usually involves testing of various devices, browsers, operating systems, and mode of communication for maximum compatibility.
The second stage of testing a IoT software begins with implementation checks related to performance. Some of the key factors that performance testing process usually works include:
Testing system for multiple devices at the same time.
Cross-device data exchange tests
Usability of the system, such as load on RAM, battery usage, power requirement etc.
Testing the device for varying network conditions and environmental factors.
The third stage of testing is all about offering seamless connectivity even during the situation where users are not able to have full range of data. In short, this is more of planning the QA goals for a condition where a sudden network drop occurs. This can be anything from storing data offline to preventing any loss of data which is not saved and is on the system when the connection is lost, no matter it is your home network, Wi-Fi, 4G, or any other generations of network.
Automation testing is the final stage of test process where the advanced applications of IoT technology are worked to meet the QA standards. For instance, it can be a IoT system that needs to be implemented to a smart home project or maybe an organization that needs to automate operations using sensors and advanced connectivity options.
Nevertheless, the process could be highly overwhelming for manual testers and therefore simulators or other devices can be put to use to meet all the IoT software testing benchmarks. This could even help testers working on IoT implementation to yield benefits related to speed, extended test coverage, and ensure a smooth implementation across dispersed environments.
Future-proof business with IoT Testing: The Crux
When we talk about embracing IoT technology, the entire purpose of the deployment and testing process ends up at offering convenience to the users. However, working on IoT technology to meet the futuristic expectations demands a thorough understanding of the challenges involved while an active approach to take on them.
As long as, it is concerned to future-proofing the business for IoT implementations, the data security threats are something that needs some strict Internet of thing testing attention. Right from the access management to meeting the compliance requirements, intelligent integration management can only be worked through right QA perspective.
And if you are having a hard time dealing with the vulnerability of the IoT systems, the only way to overcome all the deployment challenges is meeting interdependency goals through effective test strategies.
Besides, if you are looking to touch some performance and functionality benchmarks, it is always a good idea to ask for a help from the industry experts.
We at BugRaptors could help you enjoy end-to-end perfection while walking down your path to IoT implementation with our experienced and advanced IoT testing services.