Internet of Things (IoT) is not a new concept; it is already transforming various industries and becoming a part of our lives as well. Smart speakers, fitness bands, smartwatches are a few examples of IoT devices commonly used today. IoT technology basically allows users to manage their smart devices from anywhere and anytime. IoT components do not require any human mediators for transmitting data.
Since its inception, the number of IoT devices used around the world has rapidly increased. In 2018 there were 7 billion IoT devices, in 2019 the number reached 26.66 billion and as per experts, the installation of 31 billion IoT devices is expected in 2020. There is no doubt that IoT technology has immense potential. An IoT mobile app is just the thing required to reap the benefits of this futuristic technology.
Before you start the IoT app development process, you should get familiar with the working of such an app. Customized IoT apps include connected devices and sensors which operate with the help of the internet. It may seem simple on the surface, but there are complex processes involved like the analysis of the collected data.
For better understanding let’s take an example of “Smart Homes”. All major systems in a house like lighting, air conditioning, even cooking devices are all interconnected through cloud-based technology to the main hub. In this case, the main interface is the smartphones through which all the appliances can be controlled.
Technologies Used For IoT App Development
IoT apps can be developed for both Android and iOS platforms using different types of technologies WiFi, WiFi Direct, Bluetooth Low Energy, Bluetooth 2.0, iBeacon, Zigbee and NFC. Each one of these technologies used for IoT App Development has its individual uses and benefits.
Wi-Fi – As we know WiFi is a wireless networking technology that provides high-speed internet without physical connections. Compared to other wireless communication technologies WiFi has certain benefits for IoT applications. Since it is practically a basic necessity today, the infrastructure for it already exists. Also, it provides robust security, low power consumption, is easy to implement with maximum capacity & high throughput and it costs less.
WiFi Direct – Also called Wi-Fi P2P, it can connect devices without the help of a wireless access point. Wi-Fi direct can be used for different activities like internet browsing, file sharing, and communication between devices at the usual Wi-Fi speed.
Bluetooth – Bluetooth has been since before IoT even existed, you can say that it paved a way for wireless data exchange between devices. But Bluetooth can do much more than just data transfer; it has become a powerful tool in IoT solutions. But its usefulness for IoT depends on what task you are trying to accomplish. For example, Bluetooth IoT applications are a great option to consider for indoor asset tracking scenarios due to the low-power requirements, ideally infinite scalability, and reliability.
Bluetooth Smart – Bluetooth Smart or Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) has carved the path for use of Bluetooth in IoT applications. BLE puts a twist on the classic Bluetooth technology making it less power consuming without comprising on communication range. These changes proved essential for Bluetooth IoT Applications. Along with this low implementation costs and Multi-vendor interoperability are also great features of Bluetooth Smart.
Zigbee – Zigbee is a high-level communication protocol, it is less expensive and easy to implement compared to other WPANs. It consumes less power and limits data transmission from 10 to 100 meters like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. The mesh networking style used in Zigbee attributes to lower power consumption and low-cost. Zigbee focuses on wireless and sensor networks in IoT.
NFC – NFC has originated from the RFID technology, it is a wireless communication technology for communication between electronic devices. Wherein, one device should be movable like a smartphone to achieve near-field communication with the other device by bringing them within 10cm each other. Compare to Bluetooth, NFC takes less set-up time and is more secure due to its shorter range. NFC makes it very simple to connect two different IoT devices.
Beacons/iBeacons – Beacons are small, wireless devices, they use BLE technology to broadcast radio signals or to communicate with other devices. iBeacon is Apple’s technology standard, to be used on both iOS & Android mobile apps. A mobile app installed on a smartphone will listen for iBeacons and then communicates the relevant data. Applications areas for iBeacons are retail, marketing, connected homes, etc.
HOW TO DEVELOP AN IOT APP?
Planning out your IoT project will form a solid base that you can refer to during the IoT application development. You will be able to stick to your original ideas for the mobile app and then build upon it as you go. These are some points you should check off your list while you build the IoT app.
- Know your target audience, so you can design your app accordingly and thus improve user experiences.
- Set the objectives for your app and decide what features you will offer beforehand.
- Security, privacy, connectivity are some of the challenges faced while IoT application development, plan how to overcome them.
- Most importantly, have an allotted budget for developing the IoT app according to your requirements.
An IoT app that is feature-rich, with flawless execution while being cost-effective; perfectly describes what you should aim for. In the race of technological advancements, mobile apps are a sure-shot way of staying ahead of the line. Since IoT offers a great opportunity for growth for the business, investing in a quality app will only prove beneficial. It is highly possible that in the coming years, new products will be based on IoT solutions.
EXAMPLES OF IOT APP
Dynamic Production Planning
Improve the effectiveness of production planning with an easy-to-deploy system. Engage your manufacturing plant in a more proactive manner with live monitoring and control.
The tracking tags we use have very low power requirements and therefore require very low maintenance.
Easily integrates with already existing legacy systems like SAP or any other ERP or Production Planning System.
AI-Based Predictive Planning
AI-based algorithms are used to start predicting manpower-planning based on patterns to create buffers and manage productivity in non-linear and non-mechanical patterns.
With a web-based remote dashboard one can to remotely track the assets and locate their location from anywhere.
Vendor & Contractor Management
Automatic attendance of contractors can be taken, leading to better management of the contractors. A lot of aspects like invoice errors and discrepancies thereby leading to better vendor management are also taken care of.
Proximity Marketing Solution for Shopping Malls
Achieve better engagement with your customers using Proximity Marketing. A marketer can leverage this technology to customize messages for each individual making them more personal and context-sensitive.
Proximity Marketing Engine
Proximity marketing devices placed inside a mall can identify and detect movements of shoppers. Then the recommendation engine can get the shoppers’ history and shopping pattern to send targeted and relevant messages to the shopper in real-time and assists in immediate conversions.
Our Indoor Navigation Solution can identify the shoppers’ location, direct them to their requested store, enable them to view offers from various stores and find their car in the parking lot. The step-by-step navigation can be made available in 2D, 3D, and Camera Versions.
Automated Parking System
Avail the shopper’s ability to book their parking spot in advance, then the app will direct them to the selected parking slot upon arrival. This assistance can be automated by installing QuicSolv Gateways on each boom barrier.
Augmented Reality Shopping
Make your app delightfully interactive with the virtual offers provided using AR. Gaming scavenger hunt or finding deals on apps Pokémon-Go style can be very effective in engaging with customers.
Based on visit history and shopping pattern shoppers can be offered personalized offers, and vouchers; when they are not shopping. These vouchers can be redeemed with the integrated with loyalty programs. The app can display general deals available to all shoppers.
Retail Loyalty Programs
Loyalty points can be awarded based on various criteria including app installation, the number of visits, purchase volume, refer a friend, purchase frequency, etc. Loyalty privileges offered can be free parking, lounge facility, special reservations, etc. And Loyalty points can be redeemed against purchases, special vouchers, transfer of points, restaurant reservations, etc.
Warehouse Pallet Tracking Solution
With an indoor positioning system using RTLS combined with the Internet of Things (IoT), we bring you an efficient system to increase the efficiency and productivity in large-scale manufacturing environments. Reduce the time consumed in looking for the right pallets and tracking them.
IoT bases warehouse pallet tracking can easily be tracked even if the items are stored together, thus optimizing storage space.
You will not only get the real-time information of the warehouse pallet up to the minute but also backtrace the location, making it very simple to find a lost or misplaced pallet.
Track and Trace with Mobile Phones
As all mobile phones are Bluetooth capable these days, IoT pallet tracking can search for the pallet using a mobile device easily. The system will inform you of the last known location of the pallet if it goes out of the range of an ISAE Gateway.
Better Utilization of Employees
Employees can be better utilized in productive work than to search for pallets. Also, the data location of the pallet and how long has it been there can assist in calculating the amount of time an employee spends on allocated tasks.
The BLE tags attached to the pallets work on a small battery, but their performance is such that they can last for almost five years. So, once you have fitted the pallet with the tag, you do not need to worry about its maintenance.
By adding rules to the system, you can receive alerts when the rules have been breached. Monitoring of the pallets and the system will automatically take a hyper decision of alerting you the moment an error is spotted or rule is breached.
Warehouse pallets can often be lost, stolen, or misplaced; tracking them using an ISAE Gateway that uses Bluetooth technology will make it easier to find. Within 100 meters of an ISAE gateway, finding the location of the pallet is just a matter of seconds.
Employee Tracking & Monitoring System
Improve your employee productivity, keep track of your employees, and ensure that people are not laying back. An IoT employee time tracking software in real-time will allow the management to not only know exactly what time their employees enter the workspace but also tracks how long employees spent at their workstations.
Employee Performance Evaluation
Employee tracking using real-time location systems, allows you to improve your overall employee performance. On the basis of these reports, managers can evaluate their employees in the most efficient way.
With proper employee tracking, all aspects of the company fall into place, employees will be working in work hours, the administration staff will be supervising and taking care of general matters and the bosses can focus on the growth of the firm.
Get live entry and exit notifications of employees using RTLS (Real Time Location Systems).
Gather individual employee records using personal dashboards for employees.
Allow or deny a request for personal leave days for employees using the same dashboard.
Cold Storage Warehouse Management
Management of cold storage units can now be done easily with the help of the internet of things (IoT). Issues like product traceability, tracking cold storage equipment, optimal management of the warehouse space, managing shelf life of fresh produce and perishable foods, managing the safety of the workers, etc. can be overcome with Cold Storage Warehouse Management.
Real-Time Location Tracking
QuicSolv’s ISaE Framework built over Bluetooth Mesh allows asset tags fitted on pallets, bins, forklifts, lights, and employees to talk to each other and update their locations.
Hyper Decision is real-time decision making which can help in many situations. For example, if an employee is inside the cold storage at -18 Celsius for more than 45 mins, an alarm would be raised automatically.
With a proper solution in place, it is easier to optimize space within the cold storage.
Temperature and Humidity Tracking
It allows for automatic updates to the HVAC systems and helps to avoid stock deterioration. It also helps with temperature balancing and controlled heat loss.