Updated: September 2th, 2018

A majority of companies today are evaluating or adopting IoT initiatives to take advantage of new business opportunities and stay ahead of the competition. To do so quickly, cost-effectively, and with minimal risk, companies turn to IoT platforms for capabilities ranging from the design and delivery of connected products to collecting and analyzing system data once in-market.

There are now close to 450 IoT platforms available to companies. Understanding how to navigate the Industrial IoT platform market, and choose the right one for your business needs, is therefore more important now than ever before.

Two categories of platforms

There are an endless number of ways to categorize IoT platforms. Here we have chosen to broadly define two — IoT Development Platforms and IoT Runtime Platforms. IoT platforms in the first category focus on the design and delivery of an IoT system; those in the second, on the management of the system and its data once deployed. Companies will likely employ both IoT Development and IoT Runtime Platforms, as there is no one platform that covers all needs.

How to Choose an IoT Platform

IoT Development Platforms

The first set of IoT platforms provide the tools to design, validate, deliver, and analyze a connected system. Here companies ideate product concepts and design the complete IoT system that gets engineered and moved into production. At every stage of the product lifecycle, IoT Development Platforms are essential for companies to continuously receive closed-loop feedback from product usage, driving improvements in subsequent releases.

To choose the right IoT development platform, the following set of capabilities are key: 

  • IoT Modeling – with integration to CAD
  • IoT Simulation
  • IoT Prototyping
  • IoT Execution
  • IoT Product Analytics

IoT Runtime Platforms

Once a connected system is in operation, the second set of IoT platforms come into play for the management of the system and its data. Here companies monitor, analyze, and maintain the devices and data cloud in production operation.    

To choose the right IoT runtime platform, the following set of capabilities are key: 

  • Device Management
  • Data Management
  • Security
  • Operational Analytics

Completing the IoT Lifecycle

Both IoT Development and IoT Runtime Platforms are needed to ensure the successful design, delivery, management, and analysis of a connected system.

IoT platform lifecycle

The combination of platforms provides a closed-loop cycle for companies to continuously innovate and improve their products.

Here, data-driven feedback on the performance, customer usage and issues detected in the IoT system gets sent from the runtime platform back to the development platform.

For the complete guide to navigating IoT platforms and understanding which capabilities are most important, download a copy of our whitepaper: 

Get the free whitepaper – Navigating the IoT Platform Landscape

IoT platform comparison whitepaper

This whitepaper provides an in-depth comparison between platforms and tips for choosing the right one.