The Web of Things (IoT) is a big word, but before telling you the difference between IoT Platform vs IoT Device Management, we need to understand the IoT ecosystem. This consists on apparatus, large or small, networks, protocols, connections, clouds and databases, for instance. Essentially, the IoT ecosystem may be dampened into several drastic components or building blocks, with thousands of vendors offering solutions for every of those blocks.

IoT Platform vs IoT Device Management

Here are the largest IoT building blocks:

  • Connectivity

Devices or objects become IoT manageable after they connect with the Internet, directly into a cloud or via IoT gateway.

  • Device Management

The part of the IoT platform that permits provisioning and authentication of the apparatus, remote configuration and management, monitoring and diagnostics, and software (or firmware) updates and maintenance.

  • Applications

IoT applications or dashboards that enable IoT visualization and control.

  • Security

Vendors that keep IoT solutions secure.

  • Data and Analytics

IoT element that collects, stores and analyzes data. When IoT Platform isn’t precisely a platform.

Most of the time, when people say “IoT Platform”, they really mean “IoT Application”. IoT apps enabling limited IoT functionality are typically sufficient for basic IoT scenarios. Additionally, they’ll connect devices and sensors to the cloud, track and collect data and supply IoT project visualization.

Basic IoT Platforms are sufficient for small to midsize IoT jobs, but large-scale IoT projects need a sophisticated IoT functionality, Device Management component may be a must when the IoT scenario requires a connection, management, and integration of thousands of IoT devices and sensors.

Why IoT Device Management?

The IoT Device Management enables provisioning and authentication of the devices, remote configuration and management, monitoring and diagnostics, and firmware or software updates and maintenance.

Just imagine an outsized IoT project. Thousands of devices, numerous hardware vendors, multiple connectivity methods – how does one make all of it become IoT manageable? IoT Device Management providers usually provide advanced features that enable the management of various types of IoT apparatus and sensors on a unified platform.

IoT service providers have an interest in generating revenue and maintaining profitability from selling their IoT services. When it involves reaching and maintaining the profitability of IoT projects, the first way to achieve this goal is to avoid the lock-in by a specific hardware vendor. IoT providers should have the freedom to choose the best of breed devices and sensors that don’t generate dependency which will result in profitability decrease in future.

Another example of a big IoT installation challenge that IoT providers face is handling a lot of manual work to make devices and sensors IoT manageable – like customization, creating configuration files, development, homologation and testing.