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Challenges of Integrating Legacy Systems with IoT Solutions

Challenges of Integrating Legacy Systems with IoT solutions. Business Challenges with Legacy-IoT integration. Technology Challenges with legacy IoT integration.

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Business Challenges with Legacy-IoT integration

We are rapidly moving from a disconnected world to a hyperconnected one. From smart homes to smart cars, everything reflects how much effort is being put behind crafting products and services that bring hyper-connectivity to us.

With new products and new services, it is much easier to deliver connectivity. But, what about existing devices and services that require connectivity?

Given that more than 85% of all devices are legacy, it brings a huge challenge to the growth and adoption of IoT solutions. Also, note that most of the legacy systems in industrial usage come with a lifespan of 10 years or more.

Challenges of Integrating Legacy Systems with IoT solutions

And it isn’t easy to replace those devices. Replacing them comes with a high cost, which is neither feasible for consumer IoT nor industrial IoT scenarios.

With this blog post, we are going to show some of the most common challenges of integrating IoT solutions with legacy systems.

A. Business Challenges with Legacy-IoT integration

If you are planning to get started with a legacy-IoT integration project, here are the top five challenges enterprises usually face:

  • Complex business analysis with a lack of subject matter experts
  • First mover’s disadvantage – a common threat to legacy IoT integration projects
  • Lack of tech talent to carry out complex integration
  • Keeping cost controls in check
  • Constant flux, rapidly evolving technology landscape

Let us walk you through those five business challenges in some more detail.

1. Complex Business Analysis

From user research to project scoping, business analysis is a big challenge to your legacy integration project. It requires you and your team to carefully put together and analyze challenges, opportunities, and potential innovations.

Apart from business analysis being too hard for such initiatives, if you fail during this first crucial step – the entire project is exposed to the risk of failure.

2. First Mover’s Disadvantage

Unlike most software engineering projects, IoT is a space where being the first mover is often a disadvantage. Imagine being the first mover where not only hardware, cloud, front-end, and APIs are a challenge – but also the risk of working on integrating a legacy Visual Basic based system is at a whole new level.

3. Lack of Tech Talent

Think about it, how many professionals around you can port legacy hardware architectures to an evergreen one? Or, how many professionals have the skills to drive development and integration of a modular gateway predictably?

The answer is a handful. That’s what makes it so challenging to assemble the right team that can drive the project to success.

4. Controlling costs and managing the ever-evolving landscape of IoT

Given the first three obstructions, it is rather easy for you to see why controlling costs can be a big challenge. And the fact that IoT keeps evolving makes it much harder. Let us illustrate that to you with the case of Lora.

For example, it was only 5-6 years ago when LoRa didn’t seem like a protocol that would receive such wide adoption. Businesses at that time were forced to adopt SDR. Implementing SDRs bring 100x more cost to an enterprise than what LoRa does. Those that invested in LoRa as opposed to SDRs now reap the benefits of having a competitive edge.

Now that you know what obstacles you’ll have to deal with while integrating legacy systems with IoT solutions let’s get into technical challenges.

Technology Challenges with legacy IoT integration

B. Technology Challenges with legacy IoT integration

Data and Infrastructure Challenges

There are three main challenges in heritage IoT integration when it comes to data:

  • Implementing data security – Identity management and secure authentication
  • Data architecture to ensure data integrity across hardware, middleware and cloud
  • Local networks to support data transport

Most legacy devices weren’t initially built with security in mind. And, they commonly push raw data through legacy connectors like RS232. A lot of legacy medical equipment comes with ports like RS232, and the data lacks any form of encryption.

Most of these devices (e.g., an EEG machine) were designed to push information to a monitor. When you match baud rates and pull serial data from those legacy devices, it is up to your IoT devices/network to encrypt this data and push EEG information forward. This puts a lot of weight on your IoT devices, which often don’t even have a microprocessor.

The next challenge is in setting up the right data infrastructure.

Legacy equipment pushes a lot of data, and everything right from your data architecture, APIs to your network reliability should match to deliver to these expectations. This means that your entire data architecture should be built to serve data transport requirements that support security, integrity, scale, and high velocity.

1. Legacy IoT Deployment and Management

A successful IoT legacy integration project requires a vision that not only crafts a technically perfect product but also thinks about how you will manage and support it throughout its lifetime.

Deployment and management are those spaces that you have to put together, analyze rigorously, and innovate upon. While manual inspection and upkeep are always an option, automated deployments are the key to highly maintainable and scalable IoT legacy integrations.

2. Communication standards in legacy systems

When you think about communication standards in legacy systems, there’s a lot to think about. Legacy systems evolved with communication standards that initially weren’t designed to support connectivity and innovation.

Given that most of these standards were proprietary innovating on top of these protocols is not an easy task.

That’s precisely where the choices to set up system architecture, and select technology stack are most important. For example, if you are planning to integrate an IoT solution with a manufacturing system, selecting a language or framework that supports an OPC based communication system makes all the difference.

.NET, for example, not only makes it easy to integrate IoT solutions with OPC systems, but the evolved version .NET core also takes it a step further. While making it incredibly intuitive for system integrators to work with OPC based legacy systems, it also brings along powerful data processing and AI capabilities

3. Quality Control over legacy IoT integration projects

From integrating legacy to building/integrating IoT networks – quality control determines how far your plan will go. Apart from the usual hardware and software quality control challenges, legacy IoT exposes your projects to the risks of facing edge cases that are very difficult to explore during the early test stages.

Having the right experience and the right set of talent is the key to effectively exercising quality control over your projects.

And that’s it!

Tackle those challenges right from the start, and you always reach SLAs and expectations that you set with legacy IoT Integration projects.

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Automotive

6 Tips To Protect Your Vehicle From Being Stolen

Vehicles are costly, and their maintenance cost is often relatively high as well. None of us wants their car to be stolen.

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Autonomous Vehicles Where we Stand Today

Vehicles are costly, and their maintenance cost is often relatively high as well. None of us wants their car to be stolen. Since vehicle theft is quite common in urban areas, you should take some precautionary measures to ensure your car’s safety, so you don’t have to panic every time you park your vehicle somewhere.

In 2017, more than 773,000 vehicles were reportedly stolen, according to the FBI’s UCR (Uniform Crime Reports). Although car theft has declined in recent years, a motor vehicle is stolen every 40.9 seconds in the US, as reported by the Insurance Information Institute (III).

According to the III, thieves are now using more sophisticated techniques for stealing cars, such as using intelligent keys and swapping vehicle registration numbers to prevent detection. So, what can you do to prevent yourself from being a car theft victim? Keep a close eye on your car’s security and take precautions to keep it safe. Here are a few steps you can take to help keep your vehicle safe.

1. Install an Immobilizer or Vehicle Tracking System

When your vehicle is stolen, the police will use vehicle tracking systems to locate it. This is a standard protection feature on certain vehicles from some manufacturers. In other ways, it can be added as an aftermarket alternative or used as an option from the factory.

When the car’s engine is switched off, immobilizers disable three circuits (ignition, starter, and fuel supply) to start and run the vehicle. Only a specially coded microchip in the key you received when you acquired your vehicle will reactivate these circuits. Also, you will get a discount on your car insurance policy in some countries if you use standard immobilizers and vehicle tracking systems.

Buying a Fleet Vehicle for Your Business

2. Invest in a High-Tech Dash Cam

While we use the cameras to monitor our homes, why can’t we use the same technique to keep our vehicles safe? Dashcams can capture high-quality videos both day and night. Featuring G-sensors, these specialized cameras can also be used as crime detectors that keep track of all unusual activities around your vehicle. The front camera swivels to give you a 360-degree view.

Vehicle monitoring and warning devices such as a high-tech dash cam capture suspicious movements or glass damage, prevent vandalism and assist in tracking the stolen vehicle.

If you hardwire a dashcam that features a parking mode into your car, it can sense motion or impact and save the video of the incident for you in a separate folder.

3. Remove Your Valuables or Keep Them Out of Sight

The valuables inside the car are the most common reason for break-ins. Since cars are easy to trace, stealing one is more complex than you would expect. But what about those small items you left in the car? Thieves can easily hide them into a small bag or pocket and walk away. That is why it is essential not to have so many things in your car or take what you already have inside with you once you exit the vehicle.

If you can’t hold things out of your vehicle, covering them is the next best option. Before breaking into the car, thieves would want to know what they’re stealing and make sure it’s valuable. Anything from backseat bags to a jewellery item hung on the rearview mirror will draw their attention.

If you cover the things, thieves may still notice that there is something in the vehicle, but they will not know what is inside, and therefore, it’s less likely that they will take a chance in this situation. To hide things out of their reach, you can cover them with a towel or blanket or place them in the trunk.

Autonomous Vehicles Where we Stand Today

4. Make Sure Your Car has a Steering Wheel Lock

One of the most efficient and straightforward methods to stop car thieves is to install a mechanical device that can lock the steering wheel. A steering wheel lock does not discourage a committed robber, but most thieves want easy prey. A steering wheel lock can persuade a vehicle thief to move on to a less labour-intensive task.

If you ever decide to purchase a steering wheel lock or other vehicle protection system, make sure to inform the insurance provider. Many insurance companies, as mentioned, provide premiums on these vehicle security systems, meaning you might save a lot of money over time. There are a few other security options for your vehicle to save money on auto insurance as well.

5. Park Your Vehicle in Well-Lit Areas

To escape the attention, breaking into a vehicle and taking things from inside must be achieved fast. Most auto thieves work on a second-by-second basis, getting in, back, and away from the car before you even notice they’re there. Deterring criminals is easy if your car is parked in a well-lit area or on a busy street. On the other hand, It becomes much easier for criminals to break into your vehicle if you have parked it in the shadows.

Park your car in a garage if you can because it’s the safest possible location for your car. Or, you can park it in a monitored parking area where it will also remain safe from break-ins.

6. Lock the Doors of Your Vehicle

While it might seem quite obvious, many drivers won’t lock their vehicles, especially when it’s parked on a quiet street or in a parking area of their workplace. A thief might be scoping out the neighbourhood, regardless of how low the crime rate has been in your area. An unlocked car would provide him with easy access as well as a quick escape down the lane.

Therefore, make it a rule to lock your vehicle when you switch off its engine. While it may take some extra few seconds to push the button on the keychain, it will be a time well spent for the security of your car.

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