Esrat S.
October 15, 2021

IoT And Mobile App Integration: Impact, Benefits, And Challenges

Did you know that you can also use smartphones to set thermostats, view security cameras, and start cars remotely? How about drawing the curtains or switching on the air conditioner?

Well, you can do that and more on your mobile phone! How? The answer is simple: IoT And Mobile App Integration.

smart devices
Photographer: BENCE BOROS | Source: Unsplash

In this day and age, our physical world meets the digital world. Digital systems record, monitor, and adjust every interaction between connected physical items. By 2025, forecasts suggest that there will be more than 75 billion Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices in use.

We will have more connected devices than Earth’s inhabitants of Earth. But wait, the phenomenon has a name. Known as the Internet of Things or IoT, it refers to an ecosystem comprising physical objects accessed through the internet.

The Internet of Things application development gives full control over the features of various gadgets and appliances with a smartphone.

In this article, we’ll cover know what IoT is, how is it connected to mobile app development, and what specific impacts, benefits, and challenges you should be aware of.

Table of Contents

TL;DR

  • The Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile app integration is one of the most sophisticated technologies that will alter the way we use lifestyle devices.
  • IoT and mobile app integration provides hybrid apps and centralized apps, decreases human effort, ensures high-end security, facilitates interactive mobile apps, provides location independence, and most importantly it is super convenient.
  • IoT and mobile app integration increases overall productivity, reduces costs, creates opportunities for multiple interactions, and creates a better market for expansion.
  • Integrating IoT and mobile app is often challenging because of the rigorous data collection process, issues of security and privacy, and hardware and software compatibility. But these challenges can be overcome.

What Is The Internet Of Things (IoT)?

Internet of things (IoT) refers to a network of sensors, instruments, and other devices connected.

Sensors collect data and transmit it to the cloud which can be accessed through a smartphone app. It also allows data acquisition which enables us to implement data analysis to predict outcomes and make the decision accordingly. This has the potential for improving the productivity and efficiency of the manufacturing process.

The major advantage of an IoT system is the accessibility of information at your fingertips.

iot graphic
Image from Pixabay by Tumisu

A mobile phone is an effective tool that can take advantage of IoT solutions and mobile apps have revolutionized the IoT industry. Due to the user-friendly interface of these apps operators can easily control a plant without having a deep understanding of the system.

It is because of these convenient features that IoT solutions are finding their way in fields like healthcare, agriculture, retail, and much more.

The Interrelation Of IoT And Mobile App Development

Millions of IoT-connected devices already exist globally. The number will only increase as internet connectivity becomes a standard feature for devices used in households, factories, business establishments, and other urban areas.

The preferred channel to push IoT-based devices is mobile due to the ease of developing apps. Moreover, mobile is flexible when transmitting data. With a single application on mobiles such as Smart Home and Wearables, you can efficiently manage IoT devices.

Impacts Of IoT And Mobile App Integration

Offers Centralized App

IoT has several opportunities and possibilities with its services in the market. It is focused on providing one centralized platform to the end-users to manage multiple devices. This has improved the management process and cost-effectiveness for the end-users as well as the app developers.

Provides Hybrid Apps

Who wouldn’t want to give a try to new ideas these days? Almost everyone is looking for a solution that improves the way we interact today. Mobile app development companies have started using the current technical UI/UX with advanced codes to come up with hybrid apps.

Decreases Human Effort

IoT sets multiple devices, apps, and functions as one system managing all. Mobile devices with IoT allows you to track cab location, switch on the light, check security camera, and more. Hence, it has made life easier for both the developers and end-users. When users can manage all from a single device, ultimately it reduced the amount of effort being put by developers while building an app.

Ensures High-end Security

IoT allows an unmatched amount of entry points that can be a big threat to the security of the apps. Ultimately, it becomes easier for cybercriminals to exploit the data. App developers need to be focused on cybersecurity to eradicate any cybercrime.

security illustration
Photographer: FLY:D | Source: Unsplash

It’s vital to focus on building an IoT-installed mobile app that is safe and secure. User’s privacy must not be hampered at any stage. Industries have started to run IoT-enabled devices to put an extra layer of security.

Facilitates Interactive Mobile Apps

It is no secret that IoT can make mobile apps more interactive. Besides, the technology opens the gateway to new personalization options. That means a mobile app can stay relevant and up-to-date with functionalities related to IoT and beat the competition.

The technology also offers simple customization options for mobile enterprise apps as an increasing number of businesses want to reap the benefits of IoT. Many of them have connected devices for ordering supplies and in-office repairs periodically.

Similarly, businesses can simplify work processes for their staff, reduce downtime by regularly maintaining office equipment, do repairs as soon as an issue erupts, and achieve higher employee productivity in the process.

All of that means more opportunities for the IoT app development company.

Provides Location Independence

Since you can use IoT-based mobile apps anywhere and anytime, you can control your IoT ecosystem, including all devices, internet connections, hardware deployed through a single mobile app. Hence, we can aptly say IoT provides location independence.

For instance, iPhone’s Home App suggests useful automation that you can put your accessories (such as the thermostat, bathroom lights, WiFi system) to work for you. HomeKit cameras and video doorbells can send notifications to your mobile app when friends and family arrive at your doorstep.

It means you are not bound by a place and can control the IoT network from your mobile app. That is one of the tremendous benefits of IoT.

Guarantees Greater Convenience

Given that 52% of the global population are mobile internet users, you can easily manage the entire IoT network from the comfort of your homes, at the office, or on the go. You can also offer additional features such as integrating social networks and notifications in the IoT mobile application.

iot app on phone
Photographer: Moritz Kindler | Source: Unsplash

IoT makes life simpler for not only customers but also the providers of IoT application development services. App developers don’t have to invest a lot of time and resources to build a mobile app and make devices more interactive and intuitive.

Benefits Of IoT And Mobile Apps Integration

An Increase In Productivity

Technology itself is known to boost productivity. Imagine an amalgamation of two different and unique technologies.

When you connect devices and allow them to communicate over the Internet, then you can seek real-time help, and ensure its immediate availability.

For instance, IoT applications in healthcare are many. In a hospital environment, there is a constant need to empty the bin, change the sheets, and do other admin work. The admin needs resources to ensure that it is done on time.

With IoT system integration, the admin will receive instant messages over mobile apps to change the sheets and empty the bins. This way, periodic maintenance is easier for the admin, and the overall admin efficiency improves

A Reduction In Overall Costs

Let’s say, you know that a particular product does not work in the market, yet you produce the same again and again. It not only increases the cost of production, but also the overall inventory cost for the particular product.

As a result, you are pressurized to sell them with reduced margins, thus affecting the profits. With IoT, you will gain insights into all your business solutions in real-time. this will not only affect the production but also your decision-making abilities. You will henceforth take insightful and necessary decisions, thus reducing the costs.

An Opportunity Towards Multiple Interactions

IoT helps the brands interact with the customers using different approaches. For instance, the iBeacons can help locate the product in the store, thus increasing the in-store experiences.

Similarly, IoT can help you scan the QR code of the product, and know whether it is available at the store or not. You will also get to know the offers for the product with your mobile app. Slowly retail is advancing towards enhancing the overall experience of the consumer-brand interaction

A Creation Of Better Markets For Expansion

With IoT-based Android apps and iPhone apps, there are numerous opportunities made available for the brand. Earlier, IoT integration was explored in the home automation segment.

For instance, people who forgot to switch off their ACs while walking out of the home could use the Internet of Things mobile app to switch it off. There were various possibilities, and the home automation segment explored them all.

Even though all about IoT is hunky-dory, IoT and mobile app development still have a few challenges that you must not ignore.

Challenges With IoT and Mobile App Integration

Data Collection And Processing

Since IoT application requires a considerable amount of data, your IoT app development company must ensure a plan to collect, store, and process data on the cloud, in full compliance with platform requirements.

If you need assistance in fetching insights from the data you have about your customers, employ data experts, machine learning resources, and analytic engineers to calculate the data’s usefulness in hand.

What is the point of integrating IoT and mobile app development if you can’t put your customer data to good use?

Security And Privacy

Indeed, the process of IoT and mobile app development is not free from controversies surrounding network security and the security of all components present in IoT applications.

Do you remember the 2016 Dyn cyber attacks that affected internet-connected devices of users in Europe and North America? That always serves as a reminder of how it is vital to ensure data encryption protocol during mobile app development.

Plus, the IoT devices are always left unattended, which means hackers can easily tamper with them from anywhere, as long as they have remote access. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure data and devices are well protected and have appropriate access and authorization capabilities.

Hardware And Software Compatibility

IoT and mobile app development require a balance of hardware and software functions. Although it is vital to concentrate on designing the device that can achieve optimal performance, it does create a problem during regular updates.

Simultaneously, if the device does allow regular updates such as bug-fixing, it reduces performance quality. Therefore, it could be a challenge for your IoT app development company to deliver the best possible performance despite a heavy OS, bug-fixing, and device updates. Striking a balance between the two is important for your business.

Overcoming The IoT And Mobile App Integration Challenges

Whenever you eye a new technology or plan to adopt the technology for a new segment, data privacy happens to be your number one concern. The IoT-enabled mobile apps have made it possible for businesses to keep a track of the new data.

You must implement the right security technology for the IoT-based mobile app solutions. You will find that the data from various points can be accessed as a result of this solution, which will make it easier for you to understand user behavior.

You can also obtain your insights with greater accuracy as a result of your efforts

The mobile app that you have devised for the IoT solutions should be well-defined and should have a user-friendly design. The design should be planned in a way that the data accessibility is higher.

You must devise app solutions that can derive the data in real-time, and build insights on it. this can be quite a challenge if not performed properly. The UX should be able to handle volume with greater accuracy

For IoT-enabled mobile app solutions, you need to work in close quarters with the industrial experts and ensure that the processes are incorporated. You will need to go through every phase of development before you roll out the app for the users.

Final Thoughts

The IoT and mobile app integration is a powerful combination responsible for amazing use cases in many industries. It can give your business the competitive edge that it needs to thrive in the dynamic market.

The benefits for users we just described showed once again how mobile app development has progressed with IoT. Soon, we should see more interesting developments in all the above-mentioned industries in the 2020s – and beyond.

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