IoT or the Internet of Things is a network of interconnecting vehicles, smart devices, appliances, medical equipment, and all its multiple versions with the aid of embedded microchips. Not only does this allow you to bring multiple systems under one umbrella but also allows you to control them remotely. With the internet becoming a widespread resource and less of a commodity worldwide, the shift towards IoT devices just makes sense.
Take Amazon’s Alexa as an example: the retail giant’s voice assistant is one of the more comprehensive IoT security testing services, due to its control over more smart home products than Google or Apple’s offerings. More and more homes are opting for interconnected devices that require one modicum of operation – usually a smartphone. Similarly, Alexa’s presence in the Echo devices, as well as other gadgets like headphones and thermostats indicates a uniform adoption of IoT in the consumer space. IoT allows you to control everything from bulbs in your home to security cameras and kitchen appliances to be monitored and controlled remotely.
IoT’s Place in the Future
The rise in the adoption of IoT is in full swing. With the global market for the Internet of things reaching $100 billion in revenue in 2017, forecasts predict the space to explode to $1.6 trillion by 2025. With the progress of this calibre, it’s difficult to predict with reasonable accuracy how IoT will impact the tech sphere.
IoT’s implementation in infrastructure and development and healthcare has been the strongest indicator of the foreseeable future. Today, IoT allows doctors and healthcare professionals to monitor patients and offer treatment and assistance remotely. Not only is this beneficial for patients who skip traveling for diagnosis, but also provides immediate healthcare within everyone’s reach. And with the implementation of AI and ML, IoT is set on course to revolutionalize this industry.
The Importance of Proper IoT Testing
Due to its complex nature and the sheer number of devices at its command, IoT requires efficient and robust testing to function properly. Any failures in testing properly and regularly can cause a complete shut down of the entire network. Entire systems can come crashing down due to one technical glitch that wasn’t addressed in time. Times like these are when the importance of professional software testers and adequate testing tools and test case management software is needed to manage the technicalities of IoT and managing huge networks.
Here are a few of the problems that you can encounter if improper testing of IoT devices is done:
1. Software-Hardware Mesh is Not Robust Enough
One of the most important issues faced by an IoT system is the unavailability of a functioning structure of software and hardware. An IoT system consists of multiple software, hardware, sensors, communication gateways and lots of more aspects. Naturally, this needs testing at a better level and thus becomes quite a time-consuming activity.
Here, the standard functional testing performed on regular applications wouldn’t help as there’s a lot of dependency on other environments. As a result, even more care and effort are required while testing IoT systems.
2. Devices Not Interacting as Intended
If the devices within the system don’t interact in real-time or near real-time, then the entire point of IoT fails. Integration testing has got to be done to ascertain if the devices are compatible enough to run as a close-knit unit. Aside from this, backward compatibility and security testing become incredibly important in such cases. If all this is often not tested properly, then the entire system will only add a haphazard manner.
3. Problems With Real-Time Data Testing
Systems like IoT require pilot/regulatory testing before they’re launched to see if the devices are ready to manage data and perform the way they were intended. It’s also called regulatory compliance testing because it tests each and each step involved within the system to ascertain if it complies with its intended purpose. The collection of data points can be quite tough, which is strictly why the method requires tons of your time and skilled professionals.
4. Non-Compatible UI
We’re quite familiar by now that IoT is spread across multiple operating systems like Windows, Android, iOS and Linux. However, the trickiest part in its implementation becomes the thousands of devices that are run using these OS. This causes further setbacks as getting the UI to behave properly on every device becomes quite an impossible feat to realize. However, the only method to get anywhere near a perfectly functioning system is to run thousands of simulations and test cases on various sets of devices. For this, crowd-sourced testing is the best route to take.
5. Availability Of A Wide Network
Since the entire point of IoT is to make a stable network that operates on the web, speed tests need to be performed to verify the efficiency of the various networks on which you’ll work. The entire IoT architecture must be tested in various environments and under different loads. Moreover, real-time data can get unpredictable, leading to bottlenecks within the system when utilized at the end of the day. This is often why it’s important to runs tests continuously even after the IoT system has been launched within the market. you’ll always make it better through timely updates.
The aforementioned points all steelman the matter of fact that no IoT system can run, or at least, run well without efficient testing to back it up. Such complex systems depend on highly skilled testers building robust test cases in multiple varying environments to truly test the products to their limit. This is exactly where Kualitee can help improve your IoT testing. Our test case management software is the perfect addition to any QA and testing team’s arsenal of tools. With Kualitee, you can manage and track your test cases with ease and utilize its powerful integration with popular tools like Selenium to your advantage. Get in touch with us to know more!
Ray is a Marketing Consultant at Software Development Lead. He loves to write tech-related news, articles, specifically quality assurance and information security. Apart from his techie appearance, he enjoys soccer, reading mysteries, and spending long hours working over at the New York office.