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IoT revolution calls for enhanced infrastructure

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ALKESH SHARMA / Emirates Business

As IoT (Internet of Things) technology comes of age, UAE enterprises are in an immediate need to have cutting-edge solutions that provide the expanded capabilities to back the smart devices upto optimum levels. There is an apparent room available in the industry to have enhanced networks capable of supporting the pervasive nature of IoT devices, say experts.
According to a recent survey report, IoT manufacturing market size is predicted to grow from over US$ 4.10 billion in 2015 to around US$ 13.50 billion by 2020. This market is pegged to grow at a whopping CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of nearly 26.9 percent during 20-15-20.
Henceforth, there is a clear-cut scope as well as requirement to raise the level of supporting infrastructure to make most out of IoT technology.
“While the IoT has been a popular buzz phrase for the last 18 months in UAE, the scale of devices to which it applies has been fairly limited. However, the ongoing developments in network technology that will support the IoT will propel the mass deployment of IoT devices across the enterprise and in many vertical markets. They are finally driving broader scale IoT deployments,” said Manish Bhardwaj, Senior Marketing Manager, Middle East & Turkey at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company.
Bhardwaj pointed out that as enterprises in UAE begin building a network infrastructure to support the IoT technology, they must address various impending challenges.
“Device density on networks will soar. Enterprises must design their networks to support exploding device densities. IoT devices will introduce new potential security vulnerabilities. Businesses will increasingly need to design their networks with firewalls that isolate the devices to prevent them from becoming a jumping-off point for hackers into the enterprise,” pointed out Bhardwaj.
Sahil Agnihotri, a young entrepreneur, who is running an IoT lab in Venice and Dubai, told Emirates Business, “Though IoT is ushering a new era of comfort, where robotics or small machines will do majority of work but at the same time they call for very precise management of configuration and monitoring of machines. It is just like playing with fire.”
“UAE companies, which are in the forefront of IoT revolution the region, have to increase their network capacity to execute large inventory of devices and to keep a constant tab on potential trojan attacks. This market is expected to grow by another 15 percent in UAE by the end of 2016”
Another major challenge that enterprises need to overcome will be the sensitive nature of some of the IoT devices that will make them vulnerable during real-time operations. This could be addressed by having significant bandwidth for operations.
“To support this class of devices, enterprises need to make sure their infrastructure has the intelligence to automatically identify IoT devices and applications on the network and, subsequently, prioritise or police traffic based on administrator-configured policies,” stated Bhardwaj.

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