Low-code platforms boost Internet of Things projects

Sheila Zabeu -

July 22, 2022

Interconnecting a multitude of components and technologies is an obstacle to be overcome when it comes to the successful implementation of projects involving the Internet of Things (IoT). This task is usually performed by professionals with the right experience and knowledge to solve technical complexities. These are programmers, engineers, and data scientists who have the mission of connecting hardware, connectivity resources and clouds to transform raw sensor data into useful information for the business application.

However, professionals with technical knowledge are often not the same as those with domain knowledge. This mismatch can lead to delays, high costs and other friction points in projects, according to the vision of the company Akenza.io.

One way out is to turn to low-code development platforms for IoT solutions, meaning they require little programming or code generation. They facilitate the direct participation of innovation and operations teams in the development process and accelerate the path from idea conception to proof of concept (PoC), according to Akenza.io. The low-code concept is not just restricted to the IoT sphere and is gaining traction across multiple IT spectrums, to the point where Gartner‘s research states that “by 2024, low-code will account for more than 65% of application development activity”.

Among the benefits of low-code are a higher success rate of POCs and better market fit, as this type of platform reduces the distance between business and IT and thus is more likely to generate business value. In other words, it is able to include all stakeholders in the development process in order to use knowledge in various aspects well in interpreting the data coming from IoT.

Other advantages brought by low-code development have to do with the shorter time-to-market of IoT solutions and, obviously, the reduction of implementation costs. Finally, low-code architectures can facilitate the introduction of new features and functionalities in IoT solutions and decrease the total cost of ownership.

“Low-code tools are accelerators. End users can easily create complex scripts and processes on managed devices without any technical knowledge – enabling faster development and more reliability from a business perspective because it is developed directly by business owners,” Charles Cote, Capgemini’s chief architect for North America, tells IoT World Today.

The CodeResist website has reviewed the top 10 low-code IoT platforms that allow you to create Internet of Things apps and dashboards quickly and easily. These are Flowfinity, Axonize, akenza, Blinky, DG Solution Builder, JourneyXP, Any2Info, Fogwing, Waylay and Losant.

Use carefully

Like everything in life, in the case of low-code IoT platforms, there are also disadvantages and benefits. We can’t forget that development tools that require little programming can generate too much code and thus hinder the performance of IoT solutions.

Also, low-code IoT platforms may have too generic a programming scheme to handle IoT devices with more specificities. Therefore, at some point, it may be necessary to enlist the help of IT systems integrators to arrive at the final solution.

Another concern has to do with cybersecurity. Will low-code programming be able to handle the security settings of IoT devices carefully to meet minimum security standards? It is likely that also in the security aspect it is necessary to count on the endorsement of those who understand the subject.

The Capgemini architect warns that all companies that want to create products and services based on the Internet of Things can benefit from low-code development tools, but stresses that the only requirement is to have a solid IoT platform behind to gather and control IoT devices. The executive explains that low-code should be seen as an extension of IoT platforms – while an IoT platform includes few fixed business processes, the low-code platform opens up the IoT API to create new business processes efficiently.