IoT is widely talked about today in the software industry in terms of billions of devices, the adaptation of the IoT in the market, changing business models and growth in years to come. These days, connecting devices has become very dominant in that every software industry wants to excel in IoT by creating IoT-based services and products.
Connected things have existed for some time now — just look at the numerous industrial examples in which actuators and sensors have been remotely controlled. But over time, the technology used to connect these things has undergone tremendous improvements. There is more to IoT than just connecting ordinary things and making them available globally. When connected things are connected to processes and people, they become the internet of things. IoT devices make a large amount of data that can be visualized and accessed globally, data that can be reformed to create tangible insights, predict solutions, predict situations, build patterns and perform self-optimization of ordinary things by instructing them.
Android is the major driving force behind IoT
Android apps are IoT’s driving forces. Why? When you consider the market, billions of smart devices are compatible with Android. Additionally, anyone aware of the existence of smartphones is conversant with the existence of Android, which is presently the world’s leading mobile operating system. Basically, IoT is being built and managed for Android. Google made Android open for developers and device makers, which has made it a global front end for developers. This has contributed to its fast growth as a software platform. It is open source, allowing almost anyone customize it and use its source code in almost any gadget or device. Furthermore, Android Things preview version awards app developers a view at the new provision for technologies such as OpenGL and WebView to show web content.
A number of changes have been made since the update to Android O. Android Things was built to give app developers the opportunity to design Android-based mass-market and user IoT gadgets. Google claimed all complications associated with embedded system development are not applicable to the platform, therefore even without prior IT system development skills, developers could begin to use the platform to design IoT devices.
How Android is utilized in IoT
At first, IoT use in Android was seen as something that couldn’t be achieved. But currently, IoT in Android is a reality and is growing rapidly. In a simple view, the internet of things implies the growing interconnectedness of diverse smart gadgets over the internet. These devices have internet connectivity and sensors that permits them to accept information, gather and transmit it.
App developers work tirelessly to enhance the connectivity of electronic gadgets in offices and homes. A wide range of devices have hit the market already and a lot more are set to surface. These days, it is very easy to control your toaster, TV, treadmill and refrigerator using your smartphone. The availability of a platform on which these gadgets can work is the only reason IoT technology is possible today.
More reasons Android is at the forefront of IoT include:
- Android is a global front end from which developers can work. Google, the sole owner of Android, made it open source, allowing diverse device makers and developers to access it and contribute to its steady progress. The Linux-based software is open source, which allows app developers to utilize the source code and customize code to any device of their choice.
- There are several gadgets that depend on Android as an operating system. Android acts as the front end of IoT with a large amount of devices running on the Android platform. It is cheap and easy to design gadgets for IoT, making them more affordable for users.
- Apps drive IoT. A device is just a device. Meanwhile, with the proper software and apps to assist the device, it becomes more equipped. Presently, Android is the largest app platform in the world. The Google Play Store reported having 2.6 million applications at the end of 2016. Therefore, it is not astonishing that Android is driving IoT.
- IoT is being developed in Java. A lot of IoT gadgets are being developed in Java. Contrary to the use of embedded Java, which entails dedicated devices, Android permits Java to be applied in a way that makes sense.
The IoT ecosystem for Android
Knowing the IoT ecosystem and the part Android plays in it is critical to comprehending the application of Android in IoT.
- Data transfer. There are components that control the transmission of data from the sensor. For this, the two simplest choices available are XMPP and MQTT. Both are open source implementations supported by Android. The libraries can be utilized on Android, Linux and Windows.
- The sensor. Sensors have the ability to generate digital signals and perceive physical properties such as temperature. A lot of hardware vendors depend on specific platforms, such as Windows, Android and Linux. Since Android can be ported to any device and is open source, it is a common choice for device producers.
- There must be a program capable of accepting and storing data. This can be in the form of a standard Linux server. The server accepts data, recognizes it and process it. Any succeeding analysis can be done using the data.
- The components of the IoT ecosystem must be supported by a processor or device with an operating system. This device must be able to provide constant connectivity and must be portable and small, and should consume less power. All these requirements are being met by Android devices to cater for a wide range of sensors.
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