If you’ve been anywhere around the technology industry the past couple of years you’ve heard of the Internet of Things, or IoT for short. This is the idea of connecting devices and objects to the internet to be able to better understand their behavior and to gather data that could help with performance, assist in building a better product in the future – and/or give you information about the environment where the object is located.
For example, IoT-enabled objects could be lighting in an office that measures the temperature and shares data with the building manager (or the building control system itself); it could be a car that sends information on miles driven and helps the user know when to replace the brake pads; it could be a pacemaker that sends information directly to an owner’s doctor, so he/she can review the health of the patient. Critical infrastructure such as power grids, for example, will also be added to the mix. The possibilities are infinite.
Now imagine that pretty much every piece of technology we use today could become connected to the internet, all day, every day. The wealth of information created and shared has endless applications and could help the world immeasurably.
However there’s one problem – all that ever increasing amount of data needs to be stored somewhere. And simply storing it isn’t the only consideration; in today’s world, that data and information needs to be always-on and always-available.
There will be newfound pressure put on cloud providers and their data centers to provide the service and reliability needed to support a world where every piece of technology is collecting and analyzing information 24/7. The coming IoT revolution will put a sharp focus on the need for strong, secure and reliable data center partners – ones that can guarantee uptime and provide the ability to expand as the data you’re collecting grows.
If you’re an IoT company looking to grow, or if you’re moving forward with implementing IoT-enabled objects and devices in your business or organization, here are a few things you should look for in your data center partner to ensure they can support your future:
Uptime – As everything becomes connected, data center partners will have to guarantee high uptime. The businesses and consumers of tomorrow will expect that everything is on, all the time, without delay. Outages can affect the accurate collection of data from IoT objects and devices – and can make it difficult to share useful information with your customers. Say your business includes a driving app – and your data center partner goes down during rush hour. Not only can you not collect accurate data about consumers’ rides home, but you won’t be able to pass back directions on how to get around an accident. Consumers will find a new app and never go back to you. Another example would be when there is critical information in question – power grids, nuclear plants – or even medical devices. If you have an outage during a consumer’s hospital visit, you may not be able to pull up their medical device history in time. Uptime is even more critical than ever before.
Bandwidth – Some of the data that will be collected by IoT devices and objects will come in huge amounts. Very often, IoT devices just collect the data for analysis later – and this means they collect and send a lot of it. Can your partner handle the traffic? In addition, are there going to be periods where huge spikes of data occur – for example, during a major event? Are you collecting the data and then quickly sending information back out at the same time? You need to ensure your partner has the connections, equipment and relationships in place with the carriers so there are no issues at all, especially during peak times.
Room to Grow – If you’re successful with an IoT roll-out in your business or organization, you will grow. You’ll have more data collected and more analysis of it. As an IoT company, as you add new customers, you’ll also expand the amounts of data being used and reviewed. You need a partner that isn’t going to be maxed out in six months. You need one that can – and wants to – expand as you do. No one wants to have to find a new partner and move data from one partner to the next, especially if you’re in the middle of an implementation.
Here at the Markley Group, we’ve always been dedicated to helping our clients stay connected 100% of the time. To learn more about how our colocation and cloud computing services can help your company prepare for, or take advantage of, the IoT, contact us here: firstname.lastname@example.org.