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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

What Are Parking Management Systems? What is the Importance?

In this sense, it is necessary to implement a system that allows for better management of parking lots, but what do these systems consist of?

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What Are Parking Management Systems What is the Importance

Millions of people lose precious minutes of their time related to their car for two simple reasons. The first one is finding an empty and suitable place to park their vehicle, and the second is traffic that occurs when people are trying to find a space to park their car.

In this sense, it is necessary to implement a system that allows for better management of parking lots, but what do these systems consist of?

1. What is a parking management system?

Parking access security systems make it possible to monitor vehicles that move through different areas and give access to authorized vehicles. These systems restrict entry for those who do not meet the established requirements. This way, control of all users can be achieved, not only in public parking lots but also in private and residential complexes.

Ticketless parking management systems are one example that reduces traffic when cars enter a parking lot. These systems use automatic nameplate recognition (ANPR), which scans a vehicle’s license plate before and after entry to issue the associated parking fee. This reduces the time users will have to sit in their car when gaining access to a parking lot because they don’t need to wait for a ticket. QR-based tickets can also be easily included in these systems if the client wishes.

These parking management systems are beneficial in places that generally work 24 hours a day, such as:

  • Hospitals.
  • Public car parks
  • Ports, railway stations, and airports
  • Leisure centers and hotels
  • Malls

Off street parking solutions

 

2. ‘Off street’ parking solutions

Applying ‘off street’ parking solutions are an essential aspect nowadays, with street parking becoming more scarce due to the increase in the number of cars. Implementing payment terminals at parking lot exits, which work with QR readers, TFT screen technology, credit card payments, or mechanized readers with magnetic strips, are also a significant financial incentive for property owners to invest in a modern parking access control system.

A modern parking system, commonly applied in some commuter towns, provides comprehensive solutions regarding the management and control of parking lots. By adopting modern parking technology, property owners can have remote capabilities when managing their lot, reducing the number of staff needed and common touchpoints in parking lots during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some advantages that can be enjoyed with modern parking control and management technology are:

  • Reduction in operations costs.
  • Integration with building management and door entry access control systems.
  • Remote, centralized management of the system.
  • Event data allows property owners to optimize the flow of their parking lot, which can also be used for accounting or audits.

With modern parking control systems, there are notable benefits for the property owner and end-users, from cost reduction to time saved when waiting through traffic in a parking lot. Make sure you do your research when choosing your next parking control system.

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