The 10 Things Home Appliance Manufacturers Need to Know
This best practices snapshot outlines some of the considerations important for appliance manufacturers as you design, build and sell IoT connected appliances. For a deeper dive into each of the 10 areas highlighted, download the full eBook: 10 IoT Best practices for Home Appliance Manufacturers.
Home appliance manufacturers need to consider everything from network security to application software design. You also need to know how to budget, scale, distribute and future-proof your products. You will want to ensure that as you move to the IoT, you are able to dedicate your time, attention and resources to your core business. Implemented poorly, IoT connected products can drain your resources, budgets and even your brand reputation. Done well, your connected appliances can enhance your revenue and differentiate your products in the marketplace!
Best Practice #1: Clearly define your use case
When identifying use cases for your connected appliances, consider how you might use the data to differentiate your products, enhance their features and generate additional revenue streams.
Best Practice #2: Prioritize security and scalability from the beginning
IoT security must be bulletproof at the device, cloud and mobile app levels, as well as everything in between. Plan for end-to-end security from the very beginning to avoid costly, embarrassing and brand impacting security failures.
Best Practice #3: Design for end-to-end configurability
Configurability needs to be included in every aspect of your connected appliances, from the beginning. Your connected products can provide you with product performance insights and data on consumer usage. Use that knowledge to build better appliances, add new value-added services, and enhance customer relationships.
Best Practice #4: Use open standards-based IoT solutions
Choose a cloud architecture that is schema-less and agnostic to any particular data types. That way, smart home appliance products can interoperate with existing clouds and connectivity methods as well as new cloud and connectivity app roaches that emerge in the future.
Best Practice #5: Make your connected products easy to install and use
With the complexity of the IoT and the high expectations of end users, manufacturers have the added challenge of making those mobile or web apps extremely easy to use. For a list of considerations you will need to guide the design of your mobile or web app, download the full eBook.
Best Practice #6: Design for secure over-the-air (OTA) system updates
You can now change or improve your device even after installation in the end-user’s home through over-the-air (OTA) updates. Update firmware on your connected appliance, or add features based on analyzing real-world customer usage of that appliance. Your OTA system will need to have enterprise-level security to ensure data integrity and prevent hacking. The security itself can also be updated via OTA communication as needed.
Best Practice #7: Include role-based access control (RBAC) and other advanced management controls
RBAC is a method for granting either temporary or permanent access to a particular appliance by individuals based on their “roles” or their relationships to the products.
Best Practice #8: Start thinking about your appliances from a “service” perspective instead of a “product” perspective
To grow your business in the new IoT world, appliance manufacturers must shift their mindsets to capitalize on the new opportunities available with the IoT. Start by rethinking how you define the boundaries between a “product” and a “service.”
Best Practice #9: Product hardware still matters. Stick with proven hardware solutions
Don’t express your competitive differentiation in your hardware options. Using inferior-quality components for production could cripple your IoT efforts if customers try to use products that lack sufficient wireless range, performance, compatibility or—most seriously—security.
Best Practice #10: Work with a leading IoT platform
Eliminate the first nine best practices outlined here by starting with Best Practice #10. That’s because the right IoT platform incorporates all these best practices and more. Ayla Networks offers a complete IoT platform with managed cloud services, enabled networking hardware to connect devices to the Ayla cloud, Mobile Application libraries, and a full suite of business intelligence and reporting services. Ayla’s agile IoT platform abstracts the complexities of developing connected devices, so you can focus on what you do best. Ayla is solving the Internet of Things so you don’t have to!