4 Considerations When Developing IoT Consumer Applications

4 Considerations When Developing IoT Consumer Applications
The most important software development considerations to take into account when developing an IoT consumer application.

With the IoT finally making its long-awaited impact, most of the action seems to be happening in the business world, especially in the areas of manufacturing, healthcare, agriculture, and retail. However, it remains important not to overlook the smarthome and home automation market, as it also provides multiple opportunities for companies to craft high-end IoT consumer apps. 

Designing a top-shelf IoT consumer application requires a somewhat different approach compared to building an industrial IoT mobile app for the manufacturing market. An intuitive and easy-to-grasp UI/UX remains a critical part of this effort. At the same time, it needs to be highly responsive, which becomes easier when on a network with low latency. 

So let’s analyze a few of the most important things to take into account when developing a consumer app for the IoT. At the beginning of the project, a detailed design effort remains critical, given its overall importance in crafting something users find easy to grasp. Additionally, a thorough testing process is another must to ensure the design hits the right mark before the app hits the marketplace. So check out this useful information to ensure you team builds something able impact the market. 

High Performance and Low Latency are Critical 

Expect any IoT app that responds a second after a user taps a button or moves a slider to quickly end up on the dust heap. Any IoT application – consumer or business – must provide a highly-responsive experience. While operating it on a network with low latency helps in this regard, the app itself needs to provide top-shelf performance. 

So make it a point to craft code that runs fast no matter the network traffic, although note that 5G networks boast significantly lower latency than older wireless networks. Designing a simple and intuitive interface also helps reduce bloat in the UX and the code. Always keep in the back of your mind the graceful design of earlier products in technology, like the original iPod. In the end, this approach helps ensure tight, easily maintained code and a fast performing IoT app. 

Craft an Intuitive Design 

We keep belaboring the point about the relevance of elegant design in any successful IoT consumer app. But it remains arguably the most critical factor in building something for controlling connected devices. Keep the concept of a light switch at the forefront of your mind when creating your first wireframes. A simple design almost always works best. 

During an IoT consumer app development project ensure you vet initial designs with your QA team and/or super user community. It’s an important reason for building a minimum viable product (MVP) when following the Lean Startup methodology or similar variants. This ultimately plays a crucial role in crafting something highly intuitive and usable. 

The Importance of Security and Data Privacy in the IoT 

Back when the smarthome first entered the consumer technology consciousness, news about a hacked refrigerator sending a hoard of spam emails made headlines. While security at the IoT device level is better than those halcyon days, cybersecurity remains an important consideration for any consumer IoT platform and the apps using it. In fact, it ranks with high-performance and an intuitive design as the most critical factors in the app’s success. 

Additionally, data privacy also becomes critical when considering the amount of data generated by many consumer IoT applications. Preventing cybercriminals or unethical businesses from accessing app data needs to be a paramount function of your app and platform. Consider requiring two-factor authentication combined with strong data encryption algorithms to ensure a secure and private user experience. 

Futureproofing Your IoT Consumer App Becomes Paramount

As with any emerging technology, like the Internet of Things, staying on the leading edge remains a crucial factor in any consumer app’s ultimate success. In short, you need to futureproof the app and its platform to keep your competition in the rearview mirror. Considering the latest trends in the IoT world, this approach likely means implementing some form of AI and machine learning in the app’s design. 

IoT applications in the business world increasingly leverage machine learning for a wide variety of use-cases. Most of these include some form of real-time data analysis to predict maintenance for equipment or even to optimize supply chain operations. In the home, one obvious use-case involves tracking weather patterns to make the usage of a smarthome’s HVAC system more efficient. A system powered by machine learning handles this in an automated fashion.  

This type of app/platform also allows homeowners to monitor their utilities remotely, ultimately helping reduce energy usage while saving money. It’s functionality that makes it easy for your company to build a robust user base. Keep this in mind during when brainstorming ideas for a top-shelf IoT consumer app. 

If you have a great idea for an IoT platform and need help making it a reality, connect with the experts at NineTwoThree. As one of the top IoT development agencies for 2023, we boast extensive IoT software development experience and a unique combination of technical chops and business expertise. Contact us to discuss the possibilities of a partnership. 

NineTwoThree Staff
NineTwoThree Staff
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