A plethora of IoT platforms have popped up over the years as connected devices have redefined modern society gradually. Developers of IoT have already realised that cloud computing, marketing automation, next-gen sensors, advances in AI and 5G will push the IoT data collection and device management industry in hyper-accelerated growth mode. The global Internet of Things market is projected to reach $1256.1 billion by 2025 (source: Mordorintelligence). To no one’s surprise, the IoT platform market will grow exponentially as well. It’s already expected to reach $ 22.3 billion by 2023 (source: iot-analytics.com).
It’s only natural that developers should be privy to the best platforms that enable world-class IoT development if they’re to ride the giant wave of IoT revolution.
Below are some of our favourite picks (listed in no particular order).
1. Amazon Web Services
Scalable, innovative, and reliable, AWS IoT Core’s Device SDK is immensely popular among software developers. Its core features are Device Gateway for long time, bi-directional connections and low latency in messaging, supporting a billion devices. IoT Device Defender’s Authentication, Authorization and Data Encryption processes are flawless. AWS has an awesome tool called AWS IoT Things Graph, a Drag and Drop ability for creating IoT applications. There are no prerequisites such as a minimum fee, however you are charged per one million messages (incoming or outgoing). IoT Analytics makes data processing easier without massive infrastructure while FreeRTOS is a free open source system for microcontrollers and connecting IoT devices.
One of the best open source, cloud-agnostic, simple modular toolkit with device-management APIs in different protocols for connecting, controlling, and analysing device behaviour. It is popular as it supports the REST, WebSocket API and MQTT protocols and provides easy deployment to develop public, private, hybrid clouds for small, medium and large enterprises. Its client library supports devices with Python, Node.js or Java based Linux boards. Real time batch processing of data is supported as well (ElasticSearch, Apache Spark, Cassandra and Kafka). Direct integration plug-in to Alexa and other device clouds/ dashboards is also available.
3. Google IoT
This is a highest rated fully manageable service with a per-minute pricing structure and native support of MQTT and HTTP, storing all telemetry to Pub/Sub. Cloud IoT Edge ( works on Linux OS) performs local processing of images, sounds, movements thus doing away with transferring of large and confidential data. It also provides amazing Beacon tools for proximity marketing. It is highly recommended for its ease of multiple datastream, registering devices and easy deployment. Developers have found its documentation and syntax user and reader friendly along with end to end security and single global system.
4. Microsoft Azure IoT Hub
Yet another well credited platform with great dashboards, visualisation, seamless device registry, and easy IoT application management. Industrial IoT development teams have found Azure IoT Hub to be particularly effective for data intensive web applications, while other developers appreciate its flexible open source support, single sign-in streamlining, easy Edge gateway network building, and full integration with Event Grid and serverless compute, simplifying IoT application development. However, it’s expensive for small and medium-sized businesses. SDKs support HTTPS, AMQP, AMQP over WebSockets, MQTT, MQTT over WebSockets.
5. Kaa IoT platform
This platform is especially preferred as it has excellent tools to reduce development time and get started effortlessly. It features essential capabilities like device management, data collection, processing, analytics, visualisation. It’s ideal for even non technical personnel and is more IoT-focused rather than other enterprise ecosystem-focused suites. It offers flexible customisations along with seamless IoT flows under one UI so it can even be used for specific IoT use cases while integrating it with other ecosystems like AWS or Google IoT. It supports lightweight IoT protocols such as MQTT and its configuration management supports individual and full scale device management & over the air updates are also allowed.
6. IBM Watson IoT platform
It has benefits galore for developers, including but not limited to a centralised dashboard for all IoT devices, easy and extensive integration of devices, data types, analytics and ML, and even entire ecosystems, easy telemetry data ingestion with live graphing tool, ease of integration using standard APIs and tools, scalability without compromising security, AI-driven analytics functions to augment and get insights, excellent technical support and prompt responses, an immutable ledger with blockchain services, availability of historical and real-time data for devices, understand and extract insights from unstructured textual, video and visual data. It has a variety of plans for light, standard and advanced users.
Which one should you go with? There’s no one answer and the choice depends on your specific needs. It’s recommended that you research thoroughly and take as many free trials as needed to assess the pros and cons of each platform.
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