Prathiba S Sep 27, 2017 General 0

The internet of things (IoT) is being touted as the next big development in a connected world. Millions of devices, appliances, machines, sensors and objects that can represent themselves digitally, talking to each other on a cloud platform across the globe, will soon be a common sight.

It provides opportunities to integrate, understand and analyse humongous amount of data to co-create a brighter future. This would involve the internet taking up all the mundane tasks, bring in a great level of automation, as well as leverage data to make use of energy and resources efficiently and effectively.

With IoT expected to grow to such a scale and potential, it goes without saying a stringent Quality Assurance (QA) strategy must be in place.

Challenges associated with Quality Assurance and IoT

As with any evolving industry, a QA approach for IoT must optimize processes and overall user experiences. Other than just testing hardware and software, there must be a mechanism to test and validate the entire IoT ecosystem. Tech-driven innovation drives businesses and governments to scrutinize IoT and take the core principles related to QA into account, such as: security, data privacy, and ease-of-integration.

To create a truly digital ecosystem with near-seamless data sharing environment across global networks requires the continued development of compatible physical and digital technologies — both of which are expensive initiatives. Moreover, QA steps must test reliability along with scalability.

IoT Quality Assurance

QA strategies for IoT

An IoT setup is characterised by Intelligence, connectivity, sensing, interactivity, energy and safety. By designing an IoT setup with these characteristics, multi-discipline teams can work across their domains to make trade-offs in interaction design, software architectures, and business models. Let’s delve into the QA strategies in setting up a robust IoT ecosystem.

Hardware-Software compatibility

The relationship between an object or device and the software it interacts with must be validated by analyzing large-scale sensor interactions within a real-time IoT environment.

User-Device Interaction

Validates two tiers of standards – market-driven standards and government-based standards. Market-driven standards are assessed by performance, reliability, and user-experience feedback. Government-based standards align with federal and state laws to ensure considerations take place before large-scale releases – basically dictated by governmental allowances.

Cross-domain Interoperability

Measures how different devices interact with one another and the digital environment. Validation considerations such as hardware compatibility, encryption checks, and security standards from the device-layer to the network-layer are undertaken.

Security QA

Tests data privacy, network and system reliability across several IoT ecosystems. This type of QA is closely-tied to governmental regulations. Another aspect of security testing for IoT is ensuring measures are taken to maintain personal privacy and safety, as highly-sensitive and accessible systems (personal data, financial information, web cameras, recording software, GPS devices, medical readings, etc.) are prone to hacking. QA administrators need to think to ensure reliability of service, security, and trustworthiness.

User Experience

Refers to validation tests as to how a device, service, or system works across networks based on data collected from different use cases, user experience write-ups and reports, front-end usability tests, and back-end functionality validation.

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Environment Acceptance Testing

It is a process that transitions the raw functionality testing in a constrained environment to a full-scale, open market functionality test in a dynamic environment. Devices, applications, and sensors here transition from Release to Manufacturing (RTM) to General Availability (GA) before being released to the web.

Edge Testing

Industry IOT (IIoT) Applications require coordinated, real-time analytics at the ‘Edge’ of a network, using algorithms that require a large scale computation and handle high data density. However, the networks connecting these edge devices often fail to provide sufficient capability, bandwidth, and reliability. Thus, Edge Testing is very essential for any IOT Application.

IoT is sure to take the world by a storm. We have implemented IoT solutions across different sectors for domestic and global firms, such as enabling:

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