Internet of Things

IoT and Performance

Internet of Things

Internet of Things (IoT) is an ecosystem of physical things that can be accessible through the internet. A thing in IoT could be anything with an assigned IP address and have the ability to collect, transfer data over a network without any manual assistance and intervene.

The growth of  IoT over the past few years

The number of Internet of Things (IoT) deployments has grown in an unprecedented rate during the past few years. This expansion has led analysts and individual industrial companies to the prediction that a few tens of billions of devices will be deployed in the next decade in diverse industries such as automotive, utility, health, logistics and home automation. Over the past few years, IoT platforms have registered rapid manufacturing of new products, dynamic response to product demands, and real-time optimization of manufacturing production and supply chain networks. It is achieved by networking machinery, sensors and control systems together. In addition to this, IoT has helped to automate process controls and service information systems. And, this ability of IoT is what gave birth to industrial internet of things (IIoT).

Why scaling is important to increase performance?

As there is a rapid growth in things connecting a large amount of data is generated from each device and on aggregate, the data handling is a bottleneck and indirectly affects the performance of an IoT application. This is the case where scaling of resources comes in picture.

Scaling can be of vertical and horizontal. In vertical scaling, the connections up to a particular limit can be handled by increasing the system RAM, CPU and other resources and if we still need to handle more connections or more devices horizontal scaling is needed. In horizontal scaling, new machines will be added to the pool to handle the devices.

When scaling is needed?

  • Huge amount of data to databases – As devices grow the data sent by them will be huge it is not possible to store this data and handling it with a single data store in a single machine so we need to scale the data stores dynamically as data capacity increases.
  • Increase in device count – With the growth in smart devices, there is massive exposure to IoT and its applications. So the devices that are connecting to the applications are extending to millions which are near impossible to handle with a single machine. So the server that handles with device connections and device management need to be scaled accordingly.
  • Increase in connections to message brokers – Real-time messaging is the core of IoT. Every device connects to message brokers over various compatible IoT protocols like MQTT, HTTP, COAP, JMS and more. Hence when a message broker reached to its maximum connection limit the message broker needs to be scaled to handle the extra connections.

Real Time Scenarios with high performance

Must Read: Connected Vehicles

Cab Services

  • Cab services nowadays have evolved from maintaining a few hundred cabs to a large number of cabs which sends real-time data continuously and maintaining that amounts of data and analysing data require very high-performance nodes. And to achieve high-performance dynamic scaling of resources is required.
  • A popular cab service even mentioned that they are processing around 20 billion events per day that is around 300,000 events per second. We can now understand the importance of scaling and high performance to process such huge data rates.

Delivery and Transport Services

  • Delivery and transport services are rapidly increasing especially with the increase in food delivery services and e-commerce services. In these cases, it is highly needed to track the vehicle in real time to monitor the supply chain in real time. In this case, high performing servers are required to process the continuous flow of data.

During emergencies

  • This is the case we can consider for making hospital management system entirely smart. In the real times, we can’t afford the information regarding any emergencies reach the hospitals late. So to make sure the data process really fast a high performing systems must act from behind.

Must Read: 5 Benefits of IoT – for “We, The People”

Challenges and Considerations when scaling

  • Edge gateways and device management – When device count increases device management and device provisioning becomes difficult and it is very important to manage a huge count of devices so we need dynamic scaling of the server to manage gateways and connected devices.
  • Connectivity management – As connections increase connectivity will be the major bottleneck for devices connecting to IoT application.
  • Processing and Filtering the data at edge level in a scale – Since huge data will be generated from each device processing the data, removing anomalies and empty fields from the streaming data at a large scale will be challenging in large-scale IoT projects.
  • Achieving cloud connectivity at scale – At every point all the devices connecting to edge devices and we need to make sure a guaranteed connection between edge devices and cloud so that we don’t need to face any kind of data loss.
  • Security management – As the data scale and devices count increases the scaling comes to picture simultaneously there is always a security threat in these cases. So securing our device and sensors data is the major consideration in IoT projects.
  • Maintaining a centralized dashboard for a complete view and management of data and devices.

Another specific challenge when scaling an IoT project is figuring out how to make sense out of the data by running various applications at the edge. Organizations need a mechanism to update and manage applications for a large number of nodes at once. And most importantly having the ability to run complex analytics algorithms, anomaly detection at the edge is extremely beneficial for saving cloud and bandwidth costs for an IoT implementation. It is nearly impossible to do this kind of analysis without having a mechanism to control and manage this process for a large number of gateways at once.

Must Read: 5 Business benefits of IoT

How ThingSphere can scale?

ThingSphere can scale easily to more than a million concurrent connections. The platform is backed by Solace message broker. And solace itself has great background stories of scaling billions of connections for several large corporations and their systems. The platform has been tested and deployed on systems that can handle a million active devices (per second). This is possible by connecting solace to advanced databases and other best of breed components that are known to scale enormously and are used and supported by thousands of engineering teams worldwide.

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