Connectivity stays at the core of every Internet of Things (IoT) system and is a determining factor of the project’s success. Due to its nature, an IoT network relies on a robust connection to enable timely communication and coordination between different devices. Along with its advantages, IoT connectivity also presents potential risks and malfunctions that can hinder the program’s performance, smooth data transmission, and business operations.

Additionally, the field of IoT connectivity is constantly evolving with a notable shift of focus to intelligence connectivity which sheds light on the combination of IoT, 5G, and Artificial Intelligence. As more forms of connectivity emerge, concerns regarding their reliability and functionalities are also gaining momentum among businesses, developers, manufacturers, and other stakeholders. 

 Let’s go on to analyze some of the most common connectivity challenges and how to overcome them below.  

Effective solutions to IoT connectivity challenges

1. Diversifying connectivity options

 IoT connectivity relies heavily on a sufficient level of bandwidth, which refers to the capacity of the network to deliver signals and data promptly within an IoT system. In fact, all IoT projects require a stable and reliable bandwidth in order to maintain ongoing connections between components and devices. As the project grows and more devices are being linked under one network architecture, problems often occur regarding insufficient bandwidth. Moreover, sole reliance on a single type of connectivity, like Wi-Fi or cellular networks, can lead to coverage gaps and reliability issues.

Diversifying IoT connectivity

This deficiency will obstruct the IoT connectivity ability to transfer a vast volume of data and cause overall delay to the entire system. Plus, insufficient bandwidth can also bring about data processing malfunctions and the risks of losing important data which is a major concern that your business cannot afford to overlook.

How to solve this challenge?

Diversifying connectivity methods is key. Combining different types of connections, such as Wi-Fi, 5G, and Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN), can ensure consistent and reliable IoT connectivity.

For instance, integrating 5G can increase data transmission speeds by over 100%, according to a recent telecommunications report. Ericsson predicted that by 2024, 40% of the global population would be under the coverage of 5G networks, boasting about 1.5 billion users subscribed to the advanced 5G mobile broadband services.

2. Regular Network Health Checks 

As IoT connectivity continues to evolve, different technologies are competing to become the “household name” when it comes to standardized technology, which makes it harder for businesses to actually decide which integration works for their current system. 

Choosing a suitable integration is one thing, ensuring the integration works smoothly with your business’ legacy system is another story. Problems are always looming in different parts of your IoT system regarding connectivity compatibility which can be reflected in a diverse range of operating systems, multiple non-unified cloud serves, or different machine-to-machine protocol. Overlooking the maintenance of IoT networks can lead to unexpected downtime and connectivity issues.

How to solve this challenge?

In order to enhance compatibility in your overall IoT connectivity network, your IT team should always check if all technologies are up-to-date to facilitate a smooth and compatible integration between applications and operating systems. Conducting regular network health assessments can prevent these problems. This involves monitoring network performance, identifying potential bottlenecks, and addressing them proactively.

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3. Power sources management

IoT connectivity can only deliver desirable outcomes when all of the devices and sensors are functioning under an efficient power supply. A continuous and consistent power supply can be challenging to achieve when there are many different components involved that require different levels of power. If the power system is under poor management, certainly, IoT connectivity will be compromised, causing unwanted disruption to your business operation and chains of work management.

How to solve this challenge?

Low-power wide area networks (LPWAN) is an expanding technology that is positioning itself as a highly promising solution to power management challenges in IoT projects. By adopting the use of long-range and low-power radio signals, this method offers a more optimal power consumption level while maintaining reliable connectivity at a reasonable cost. 

Power sources management for IoT connectivity

Business leaders can also consider deploying the Power over Ethernet method which enables the simultaneous transfer of electrical power and data over a singular Ethernet wire, facilitating an improved method to power devices across your IoT network.

4. Scalable cloud infrastructure

Ericsson predicts that by 2050, the number of interconnected devices will soar to 24 billion, indicating that virtually every object in our surroundings – from streetlights, thermostats, and electric meters to fitness trackers, water pumps, cars, elevators, and even gym vests – will be part of this network. As IoT networks grow, many businesses struggle with scalability issues, affecting both performance and connectivity.

An IoT system that is built without a vision for development and room for scalability is usually a dead-end and unsustainable project that will cost your business big chunks of money whenever there is a need to scale up. Your system does not only need to meet technology growth, the expansion within the organization will also require adding more devices to the IoT system which once again raises the question of an adaptable architecture that is friendly to scalability. 

How to solve this challenge?

Opting for scalable cloud solutions allows for flexibility in IoT operations. Cloud platforms that offer on-demand resource allocation can adapt to changing IoT demands, ensuring seamless connectivity. A survey indicated that businesses utilizing scalable cloud services experienced a 40% improvement in IoT operational efficiency.

Another option to future proof your IoT network is by utilizing automated bootstrapping to increase opportunities for development in your project and free up space for new devices to be added on. 

5. Enhanced security protocols

The problem with security and the risks of cyber attacks have been plaguing the IoT industry for quite some time. It is understandable that IoT connectivity networks are susceptible to security threats due to their complex and interlinked nature. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, the global annual cost of cyber crime is projected to reach $10.5 trillion by 2025, underscoring the critical importance of strengthening cyber security measures.

This challenge is particularly alarming as one breach on a certain device can easily disseminate to other components of the network and the cost of data leakage is too high (with the average of $4.45 million each time they occur) for businesses to be careless.  

How to solve this challenge?

Investing in advanced security measures is non-negotiable. Employing robust encryption methods, regular firmware updates, and secure access protocols can mitigate these risks. Statistics show that businesses that upgraded their IoT security protocols witnessed a 30% reduction in cyber incidents.

Final Thoughts

Connectivity is certainly a fundamental aspect within any IoT system that your business should put efforts into entrenching and improving. Despite its vitality, IoT connectivity possesses various inherent challenges that require constant monitoring and thorough strategy to effectively deploy and function. 

Seeking advice and assistance from an IoT solutions partner with deep expertise in tackling these challenges can help your business create a streamlined and effective system at a lower cost with less time and effort spent. Check out our IoT outsourcing services is your business’ first step to a reliable and robust IoT network. 


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