Сhallenges in IoT Development and How to Overcome Them

Сhallenges in IoT Development and How to Overcome Them

Table of Contents


It is at the beginning of every IoT development project that you think: “ Where do I even start? What possible IoT challenges might I encounter?”. Well, there is no ultimate answer to this question, but one thing is known for sure. Researching would become a good starting point and would enable you to identify which challenges should be considered in IoT projects. 

Unfortunately, many folks refrain from even calculating the prospective budget when it comes to IoT projects because they think that it is going to cost more than an arm and a leg. Indeed, business owners are prejudiced towards IoT projects as all those IoT sensors, IoT platforms, data transmission, and IoT app development are going to flatten them out. 

Let's face it: it used to be so back in the day, but now, everything is different and it's very likely that you will now encounter main challenges of IoT. Smart solutions and the extended range of neoteric and cheap sensors that we have in our tech arsenal enable IoT developers to build projects in a simple and cost-effective manner. So, let’s talk more about the main challenges in IoT development that are holding you back from launching a successful IoT project.

1. Technical Challenges in IoT Development

The issues you might experience when starting your way in IoT product development might differ based on your final vision of the project itself. It all depends on what exactly you want your device, IoT sensors, hardware and software functions, etc., to be capable of. Nonetheless, there are five major challenges of Internet of Things development that you are quite likely to experience, regardless of the IoT workflow you have in mind.

IoT Security Stats

1.1 Security Issues in IoT Architecture

Think about the device, cloud, and user application as the three main components of IoT architecture. Let's now add the connections between these components (Wifi, Loraone, Bluetooth, etc). All components, including the device, cloud, and user application, may now have Internet of things security vulnerabilities and challenges.

On a hardware level, the development team is primarily in charge of security. This is the area where hackers can steal your original algorithms and duplicate hardware to forge data.
In terms of IoT connectivity challenges, your development team should make sure that the link between the hardware and server is encrypted. Because sometimes we cannot be certain of the identity of the connectivity provider (because there may be wifi in the restaurant), the connection to the server should be encrypted so that you have no control over it.

How about the Cloud? Contrary to popular belief, the cloud service provider is only partially responsible for the security of the data they store. Hackers, employees, or business owners themselves are much more likely to be the source of data leaks.

1.2 Swift Development of Technological Advancements

The IoT industry is one of the most rapidly-growing industries worldwide. According to McKinsey & Company, one of the world's leading business consulting and analytics firms, the global number of IoT-connected devices is expected to increase to 43 billion by 2023, nearly tripling from 2018.

Sure, it is wonderful that you’ve decided to invest in the industry that will be rocking this world for decades to come. Still, you’ll have to understand one simple thing: the project that you have in mind today can be irrelevant in one year, or maybe even a month. So, when it comes to IoT application development, it requires fast action within a short perspective.

1.3 Connectivity and Compatibility Issues

When devices are unable to communicate with one another due to differences in protocols, frequencies, or other technical specifications, connectivity issues arise. This can result in data loss, system crashes, and even security flaws. Compatibility problems occur when devices are unable to communicate with one another due to differences in software, firmware, or hardware.

To address such security challenges in the Internet of Things, developers must take a holistic approach to design, development, and testing. This includes not only technical considerations, but also user experience, security, and scalability.


1.4 Device Management and Maintenance

Device management is a crucial part of IoT development because it involves managing the numerous devices that are connected to the network. Sensors, gateways, edge devices, and cloud-based servers are just some of the devices that can be found in IoT networks. These devices may have disparate hardware, software, and communication protocols, making effective management difficult. It is critical to ensure that all devices are properly configured, updated, and secured in order for an IoT system to function properly.

Maintenance is also a challenge in IoT development because IoT devices are frequently deployed in remote or difficult-to-reach locations, making routine maintenance tasks like firmware updates and battery replacements difficult. Furthermore, the sheer number of devices in an IoT network can make it difficult to quickly identify and diagnose issues, resulting in costly downtime and reduced performance.

1.5 Scalability and Interoperability

Scalability is the ability of an IoT system to handle an increasing number of devices, data points, and users over time. IoT networks frequently start small, but as they expand, they can become complex and difficult to manage. Scaling an IoT system necessitates careful planning and design, which includes considerations such as network topology, data management, and device management.

Interoperability refers to the ability of various IoT devices and systems to interact with one another seamlessly. Interoperability is critical for IoT systems because it allows devices from different manufacturers, with different hardware and software, to communicate and exchange data. Without interoperability, IoT systems can become siloed, limiting their functionality and making it difficult to integrate them with other systems.

1.6 Professional Skills Shortage in IoT

The interdisciplinary nature of IoT development is one of the primary causes of a professional skills shortage. Teams of professionals from various fields, such as electrical engineering, computer science, data analytics, and business, are typically involved in IoT projects. Finding a team of professionals with the required interdisciplinary skills can be difficult. Furthermore, as IoT technology evolves, professionals must stay up-to-date on the latest developments and trends. 

2. Business Challenges in IoT Development

Trying to navigate the business landscape of IoT development without a compass is comparable to trying to navigate a stormy sea. Businesses seeking to develop and implement IoT solutions face significant challenges due to rapidly changing technology, budget planning issues, and emerging market trends.

R&D in IoT

2.1 Poor-to-None Research

As the old adage goes, "Nothing ventured, nothing gained." However, when it comes to IoT applications, it is only beneficial when the risk is justified. To avoid IoT challenges and money waste, your project must be thoroughly researched. 

Before moving on to the IoT application development stage, you should validate your IoT business concept. Gather your team, calculate your budget, define your vision, research your markets, and demonstrate your product's technological viability. To put it bluntly, before you begin spending on project development, make certain that it is worthwhile.

2.2 Way Too Many Savings

Because today's IoT projects are quite progressive, long-term planning is not the best option. The budget you've created for a project you want to start in a year may be insufficient or, on the other hand, excessive. You are correct in asking, "What's wrong with saved money?"

To be honest, saving money is not always the most profitable path to take. Meanwhile, it would be prudent to invest them in researching your project's commercial and technical prospects. 

While many people do not recognize the importance of proof of concept and project specifications, you should be aware that they reduce risks, allow you to see the big picture of your project, and anticipate IoT development challenges.

As a result, it appears that investing a relatively small amount of money in preliminary research and project specification can save you a lot of money in the long run. 

2.3 Standards and Regulations

It is critical to ensure the privacy and security of generated data in IoT systems in order to build trust with users and avoid legal and regulatory compliance issues. Furthermore, the regulatory landscape for IoT systems is complex, with developers having to navigate a patchwork of regulations and standards that differ by region and industry.

Second, IoT systems can involve a diverse set of stakeholders, such as device manufacturers, software developers, data analytics companies, and cloud service providers. Each of these stakeholders may have different regulatory requirements, making it difficult for developers to ensure that their IoT solutions comply with all applicable regulations.

2.4 Intellectual Property and Patent Issues

Making sure that IoT solutions do not infringe on existing patents can be difficult. Because of the high cost of patent litigation and the complexity of IoT technology, product owners may find it difficult to navigate patent disputes. Also, when multiple parties contribute to the development of an IoT solution, ownership disputes can arise.

To address these issues, creators must be proactive in managing intellectual property and patent issues, conduct thorough patent searches, carefully review licensing agreements, and take steps to clarify ownership of intellectual property rights from the start of IoT projects.

2.5 Market Competition and Customer Adoption

It can be difficult to persuade customers to adopt new IoT solutions, especially in industries that are slow to adopt new technologies. Many customers may be hesitant to invest in new IoT solutions due to privacy and security concerns, as well as the complexity of implementing and managing IoT systems. Furthermore, for many customers, the high cost of IoT devices can be a significant barrier to adoption. IoT devices frequently necessitate specialized hardware and software, making them more expensive than traditional devices.

To address these challenges, IoT product owners must approach market competition and customer adoption strategically. They should concentrate on developing solutions that distinguish themselves from competitors and provide real value to customers.  Finally, creators should prioritize customer trust by ensuring the privacy and security of IoT data, as well as providing clear and transparent information about how IoT systems work. 

3. How to Overcome IoT Challenges?

When discussing the challenges of IoT implementation and how to overcome them, keep in mind that the answers to your questions are hidden within the questions themselves. There are three steps to take to ensure you understand every aspect of your IoT project before you begin developing it.

3.1 Choose Your IoT Vendor Wisely

As previously stated, planning is vital but it provides no advanced value in the long run. As soon as you have an idea and a preliminary vision for the IoT app, choose the right vendor for further consultation and implementation. The vendor must have extensive knowledge of hardware implementations, embedded systems, cross-platform deployment, data transfer, network security, and so on. 

Look at marketplaces for software vendors and their customers, where the latter provide unbiased feedback on the quality of services they received from the vendor of your choice. Examine the vendor's portfolio to see if they have the necessary experience dealing with IoT apps or projects like yours. Finally, contact the company and strike up a conversation with them, preferring only face-to-face communication to ensure that the vendor is a good fit for you.

3.2 Get a POC and an MVP

The proof of concept (POC) and minimum viable product (MVP) stages are critical in the development of any IoT application. The POC and MVP are intended to validate that the application idea is both technically and commercially viable, and they require the assistance of a professional team comprised of tech and business experts, as well as IoT developers. This could entail creating a small-scale prototype or carrying out a series of experiments to test the underlying technology. 

The team will proceed to the MVP stage once the POC is completed. The MVP is intended to be a fully functional, albeit limited, version of the application. It is destined for market release to determine whether the end-user requires and desires the application. This allows the team to collect valuable feedback from users, which can be used to refine and improve the application.

3.3 Create the Roadmap

Once you have a successful POC and MVP, you can move on to developing your project's roadmap. This is a step-by-step guide to how and when you will scale your product, implying that your expenses will be planned as well. A project development roadmap is based on the MVP results and will assist you in taking a more strategic approach to the development of IoT applications. 

Overall, it appears that the development challenges in IoT are less severe than people believe. Get some experts on board, specify your idea, assess its business and technological potential, and voila - an IoT project is in the works.


Planning, starting, and implementing an IoT project can indeed be a challenging endeavor, and it's not uncommon for brilliant ideas to fail before they even get off the ground. There are numerous technical and business challenges to consider, ranging from hardware and software design to data security and privacy. 

However, it is important to maintain a positive outlook when encountering IoT issues and challenges. Often, a fresh perspective or the assistance of an experienced professional can help to overcome even the most complex issues. As such, seeking out expert guidance and support can be a valuable strategy when navigating the complexities of IoT development. 
By addressing the challenges mentioned above and focusing on user experience, you can create an IoT solution with the potential to change the world for the better.

Yaroslav Rybii

Written by

Yaroslav Rybii

COO at Indeema Software

In the information technology industry, I have more than ten years of executive leadership experience. Since 2011, I've worked with established companies and startups all over the world to provide full-cycle development for over 100 projects, primarily in the United States, Germany, Switzerland, Canada, the United Arab Emirates, and Ukraine.