We are living a connected life, and Intertek works to ensure and optimize those connections via its testing services for the Internet of Things.
The Internet of Things (IoT)—physical assets that connect and communicate via a networked system to help provide enhanced offerings—represents a revolutionary bridge between the virtual and the physical worlds. It changes how we interact with the devices that simplify our lives—and it is only growing in popularity, affecting more and more products, software and hardware development, and even whole industries. In order for these IoT assets to operate at peak functionality, safety, and quality, however, testing is paramount.
All IoT devices are embedded with sensors and wireless radios that enable connection, which offers the chance to remotely access products from around the globe as well as improve energy efficiency and save money and time for consumers and businesses. These connected elements—from componentry and whole products to software and hardware, networks, and backup and operating systems—require testing plans and simulations that are knowledgeable, anticipatory, vigorous, and comprehensive. Our expert engineers can offer testing that covers certification, usability, functionality, performance, quality assurance, security, battery impact, and data consumption, as well as EMC and interoperability testing that ensures IoT devices do not interact obtrusively with other products around them.
While the opportunity to connect with devices almost anywhere is one of the most exciting aspects of the Internet of Things, it can also be one of the most precarious. IoT assets that are connected to a network are gathering and storing personal and private data, and just because that data is stored in the “cloud” does not necessarily mean it is safe and secure. It is important to test the safety of the data transmission and storage systems IoT-connected products use as part of the design and ongoing maintenance processes, and particularly as new devices and networks hit the market, as these can expose new weaknesses.
Additionally, problems and malfunctions with an IoT-connected product can potentially compromise the safety of the data a product stores. How users interact with a product can uncover a lot of unforeseen potential security issues. IoT-enabled businesses need to know what, how, and where they are storing data before the product is in the public’s hands in order to address and minimize possible security breach risks.
The chances to benefit from IoT-enabled products are nearly endless though. From smart homes and retail and commercial outlets to healthcare and wearable tech, manufacturing and agriculture systems, transportation and cargo and beyond, there are a myriad of opportunities to bring products into the Internet of Things. Intertek’s depth and range of expertise in these industries, as well as in IoT testing, offers informed, efficient services and options to retailers, manufacturers, and other IoT-interested businesses around the world.
In smart homes, IoT devices allow homeowners to customize their houses and living experiences in ways they never could before—changing temperature settings, turning off and on lights, and locking doors, for instance—all from a distance. Intertek’s familiarity with home appliance, electric, and electronic products helps showcase the integrated elements of smart homes through testing specifically suited to a product’s needs, optimizing IoT aspects so they won’t interfere with primary functions.
Retail and commercial businesses also benefit from the Internet of Things through building energy and supply chain management, enhanced security systems, data-supported product development and marketing efforts, and more. Having connected access to the range of complex, interlocked systems commercial and retail businesses require allows them to more easily control environments and know almost instantaneously when issues arise. This means businesses can be proactive instead of reactive, and Intertek’s experience in IoT allows us to know and test for the needed connections and interactions that can elevate connected management possibilities.
The Internet of Things is increasingly making an impact in the healthcare industry as well, providing more home health options with access to immediate assistance when needed, devices that can help with early disease or illness detection, and wearable tech devices that can monitor fitness and health, among other things. For devices that are worn on the skin, microbiological testing is a must, and many of these devices also require endurance and accelerated stress testing, as they interact constantly with the user. Our medical and technical experts regularly work to ensure devices are tested to proper quality, functionality, performance, and regulatory standards and certifications, making them ready for public consumption.
The manufacturing and agriculture as well as transportation and cargo industries also are linking into the Internet of Things, utilizing remote monitoring to adjust and maintain settings from distance with the benefit of up-to-moment data to inform decisions. Connected supply chain tracking can help ensure better service and delivery options and more efficient space and storage usage, and the possibilities only continue to grow. Intertek’s strength and knowledge of these industries helps offer the best testing options while also providing better services that related to the connected nature of the Internet of Things.
Whatever your IoT testing needs and whichever industry you serve, Intertek can meet your requirements with our expertise, advanced technology, and ability to keep project timelines.