Consider Why IoT Standards might not really matter for Enterprises31 Jul, 2015
According to Kevin Fitchard for FierceMobileIT, with all the talk about such things as connected refrigerators, light bulbs, thermostats and garage doors, the mass market would be forgiven for thinking that consumer companies developed the concept of the Internet of Things. But only in the last five years or so has the technology made its way into the consumer realm.
Says Fitchard: IoT, in fact, got its start in the enterprise, powering services like fleet management, asset tracking and factory automation services. Back then it went by names like machine-to-machine communications and telematics. When consumer-focused companies got ahold of the concept, they gave it a flashy new moniker to reflect the new lifestyle millions of connected appliances, gadgets and doo-dads would create.
But that doesn't mean there isn't a difference between the IoT of today and the M2M networks of old. As telematics came of age in the last two decades, it emerged as proprietary islands of technology that targeted very specific kinds of businesses. For instance, UPS and FedEx deployed very sophisticated package tracking and fleet management systems, but if you weren't in the logistics market, you wouldn't have any use for components of the systems.
"The Internet of Things is establishing a horizontal foundation in what was a very vertical and proprietary market," said Matt Michael, a senior director of the product management for Qualcomm and chairman of the AllSeen Alliance.
Now, IoT vendors are working on how to connect disparate systems. For instance, it would be ideal if a building's automated security system could easily talk to a lighting and climate control system, turning down the lights and air conditioner when the last employee has left for the evening. To get there, we'd need a standard that could do for IoT what HTML did for the web: Create a common language with which all devices could communicate.
There's only one problem. While the companies trying to build the "things" of the Internet of Things agree standards would be great, they can't agree on what standard (or standards) should reign. What we're left with is multiple camps each vying to make their IoT frameworks de facto standards either for all or a specific portion of IoT.
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