The new year is only a few weeks old – so it’s a good time to take stock and look ahead: what were last year’s top topics in IoT and IIoT and what will play an even more important role in the new year? We take a look at the 5 most important IoT trends for 2020.
Some companies are already looking to the future: Nanosatellites for IoT services. Using these comparatively lightweight satellites, practically every point on earth can be covered – even in regions where there is little or no infrastructure. Application of this technology was initially intended for the fields of agriculture and research, for example monitoring wild animals or research into climate change.
However, more and more companies are also seeing applications in the IoT sector. According to Markt&Technik, companies like NanoAvonics have big plans to launch many more of these satellites into space to make them available for commercial use. Eutelsat will also launch 25 nanosatellites to serve the growing IoT market. Other players such as Amazon are already talking about bringing satellites into low earth orbit to provide Internet access to underserved communities around the world.
Flexible: Container Orchestration
IT architectures in particular are subject to fundamental change. Contemporary, cloud-based applications are now built on containers, bringing with them greater flexibility and performance. This is also true for any centralized or Edge IoT deployment. In the context of container orchestration, there is no getting around Google’s open source platform Kubernetes.
A recent study by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation shows that 40% of the companies surveyed are already using Kubernetes – including Device Insight. The use of cloud-native technologies in production environments has thus increased by over 200% in the last 18 months. It is also interesting that a company like Cisco doesn’t just rely on one provider for its Cloud Platform, but on all three major players,# Google, AWS and Microsoft. In 2020, it is expected that Kubernetes will continue to gain in importance as an IoT technology – as will cross-supplier cooperation in the area of IoT platforms.
Essential: IT Security
With growth in the IoT and IIoT sectors, security will remain a trend topic in 2020. After all, we are talking about billions of new devices that will be connected or interconnected in the future. Securing these devices is critical for organizations to protect data, privacy, physical security and infrastructure.
As the number of networked devices increases, the scope for attack continues to grow and, under the enormous pressure to grow and develop, any mistake, however small, could be exploited. Investments in security and preventive measures are therefore of utmost urgency. IT security will definitely continue to play a major role for companies and users in 2020.
Promising: Secure microchips with cloud integration
Last fall, Microsoft announced the launch of Azure Sphere Microcontroller (MCU) for February 2020. Microsoft Azure Sphere is a promising microchip technology that enables any device manufacturer to create devices with native, highly secure cloud integration. The turnkey solution for IoT devices is a way to securely connect billions of MCU-based devices that are currently difficult to securely connect due to their limited computing and storage capabilities.
One of the early adopters of this technology is coffee giant Starbucks. Among other things, the company upgraded some of its coffee machines with an external device called the Guardian Module to securely aggregate data and proactively identify problems with the machines.
Sustainable: Environmental protection with IoT
After a year of numerous climate protection protests by the “Fridays For Future” initiated by Greta Thunberg, the topic of sustainability now seems to have arrived on the agendas of major companies for 2020. Libelium, a provider of hardware and software for wireless sensor networks, published a report in the fall that explores how IoT can contribute to the United Nations’ goals for sustainable development and how a company can use technology to achieve these goals.
Numerous other companies in the IT and IoT industry are also committed to sustainability and environmental efficiency. Microsoft, for example, recently announced that it wants to become CO2 negative by 2030. Many more companies will follow and address this issue with the help of smart technologies.
To conclude: Exciting challenges
The growth of the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 has definitely not lost momentum. More and more networked devices are being used. In addition to the focus on security aspects and the exciting developments in the fields of nanosatellites and Kubernetes, technologies will, in the still young new decade, increasingly serve sustainability and environmental protection. Many companies are already acting in this direction and have put these issues high on their agenda. New technologies can thus become a key driver in the fight against climate change.
A beginning has been made. Those trusting in an experienced partner are already that one decisive step ahead in the market.
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