IoT Use Cases & The Importance of Software Testing

Internet of Things (IoT) Use Cases & The Importance of Software Testing

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Automation has made manufacturing more agile and flexible, and also allows developers to tailor products to any customer’s exact requirements.

Industrial systems these days are no longer programmed only for certain tasks – they now converge, communicate, and integrate with each other in a way that simply wasn’t possible before. Network visibility covers the whole spectrum of processes, from logistics in real-time to automated quality control.

The ever-expanding Internet of Things allows operators to cut labor costs by automating many manual processes, which further supports optimal production at every stage of the process.

There are 3 levels of intelligence in the industrial IoT

Local: Machine-to-Machine communications prevent overheating and failure by reassigning workloads from overburdened machines.

Central: Production can run at optimal capacity and high quality as the data on all active components within the system is relayed to the cloud. Algorithms analyze overall performance to assess the impact of any disruptive elements. The control center then makes appropriate adjustments to control factors such as overheating.

Enterprise: Data for multiple factories can be collected and analyzed for performance comparisons. The software generates insights for stakeholders to work out further process improvements with tighter algorithms, ultimately driving up revenues.

Industry Use Cases

  • In the milk industry, for instance, every batch of milk cartons comes with a unique barcode. A consumer can scan the code and receive data on a mobile app that summarizes the condition of the milk.
  • In the field of medicine, a company called Glowcaps has installed chips in their prescription bottles that send alerts to patients, reminding them to take their pills on time.
  • In manufacturing, there are new devices that come outfitted with on-board computers and WiFi, which help with modularization of production and optimizing the supply chain.
  • Centralized management platforms can provide GPS services to locate misplaced equipment, to assign the most appropriate tools for a specific production unit, and to schedule maintenance based on performance data gathered in the database.
  • Big data integration with production modules and tools can significantly increase efficiency by linking the machines with an enterprise’s resource planning and manufacturing execution systems.
  • The end result is that product recalls are far more likely to be avoided, as all the components and processes of the entire system get integrated, transparent, and automated.

Addressing challenges

Systems that were not connected before need to be migrated securely to interconnected networks. This can be accomplished by building secure Internet gateways that enable cloud-based central control systems to collect local intelligence data from the systems while blocking attacks.

And now the importance of software testing:

  1. Safety: Heavy devices need inbuilt mechanisms to prevent accidents; the technology must be tested to ensure its consistency and robustness.
  2. Reliability: To deliver the promised services and ensure perfect network integration, the reliability of systems must be confirmed through rigorous testing.
  3. Security: The ubiquity of wireless networks and greater mobile data means that enterprises are now more open to cyber attacks. At the level of both networks and the particular devices, a comprehensive security plan must be implemented. Solid security technology must be installed in every tool right from the first design stage, covering both hardware and the inbuilt software.