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Can low-code be effective in IoT?

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With the rising demand for digitalization, and new innovative solutions. Companies are finding it hard with labor shortages to meet the need for time and cost-saving techniques. And in that splash, comes a low-code platform or no-code platform to speed up the process and widen the skilled labor resources.

An interview conducted by the industry of things answers the importance of low-code and its effect in the IoT world. It has been edited as per the context.

Why do many companies rely on low-code development platforms?

Katrin Beuthner, Managing Director of United Planet: A low-code platform is an ideal tool for managing the digitization of all business processes, which is currently progressing at an ever-faster pace. Digitization is progressing, as are company processes and business models have to change and adapt faster. However, these business processes and business models are very individual in each company and become more individual the more business-critical they become. For the latter, a standard “out of the box” solution does not work. It must be adapted to the requirements of the company. In particular, fewer and fewer companies can afford the resulting time expenditure these days. A low-code platform enables the individual adaptation of solutions with the simplest of means, some of which can also be implemented by specialist departments without any programming. This leads to an enormous acceleration in the implementation of requirements.

Hans de Visser, Vice President of Product and Solution Marketing at Mendix: According to Gartner analysts, by 2021 the demand for business applications will grow up to five times faster than IT companies can serve them. In addition, the majority of the digital products developed do not meet the original expectations – according to McKinsey up to 70 percent. This leads to a high degree of necessary rework on the part of the developer. The Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute estimates that 75 percent of this effort is caused by poor or ineffective communication between business and IT departments. Low code can bridge the gap between business application needs and existing developer capacity by empowering coders and non-coders to collaboratively build applications—in a fraction of the usual time. Low-code platforms have a visual user interface that simplifies building apps using drag-and-drop components and model-driven logic. In addition, early and frequent coordination between specialist departments and developers is possible via integrated feedback tools. that simplify building apps using drag-and-drop components and model-driven logic.

Why companies are using more low code for IoT projects?

Catherine Beuthner: The reasons mentioned above apply to all digitization projects, including IoT. In the area of ​​IoT, however, there is also the fact that this topic is still quite young. Many companies are just beginning with the first implementation attempts. Here, a low-code platform again plays out the time advantage and “simplicity advantage”. With very simple and fast prototyping, different scenarios can be tested and a wide variety of ideas can be implemented until every company finds the right IoT approach and the right IoT implementation for itself. It is precisely here that the lack of experience can have fatal consequences if a project worth millions is completed after months or years and it is found that the wrong approach was chosen. Low-code platforms are ideal for agile development methods.

Christopher Bouveret, CIO at iTiZZiMO: The IoT offers the opportunity to improve workflows and processes as we know them today many times over. This also has a positive influence on product and service development. The basis for this further development is different applications that determine the degree of digitization of companies and decisively decide how competitive a company will be in the future. However, the development of IoT applications requires different and equally important factors. On the one hand, there are many different technologies. The solutions generally consist of a mix of IoT endpoints, platforms, backend systems, and data. In addition, the development of these applications requires appropriate specialist knowledge. In addition to know-how about the company platform and services, this also includes data and machine learning technologies. Much is still a new territory at the moment, but developers still have to keep up with the speed of digital change. Building IoT applications via a low-code platform speed up the process many times over. This is because the applications are no longer programmed, but configured. This also enables less tech-savvy users to use the platform. Challenges such as the shortage of skilled workers are overcome through the use of low-code. The optimized use of resources also helps to reduce the costs of creating the application.

Hans de Visser: The IoT is about to transform entire industries. With the help of the IoT, companies can, for example, digitize internal company processes or the customer experience or even develop disruptive, digital products and business models. However, the development of IoT applications presents some challenges as it requires many different technologies. IoT solutions typically consist of a complex, heterogeneous mix of IoT endpoints, platforms, backend systems, and data (e.g. sensors, actuators, processors, embedded software, local and long-term connectivity, middleware, apps, analytics, machine learning, etc. ). Therefore, programmers with special skills are required for the development. These must not only with theBe familiar with their company’s IoT platform and underlying services to understand real-time data streams but also with big data and machine learning. In addition, they must work closely with the specialist departments to experiment with new ideas together and to bring new solutions to the market through rapid iteration. Low-code development platforms significantly accelerate the development of IoT software and applications, as they simplify teamwork and already have the platforms required for IoT app development, such as AWS, IBM Watson, Microsoft Azure, or KPN LoRa, integrated.

In my opinion, low-code should not divide the skill importance and shows the software as for some who do not know programming as a flaw is meant for low-code technology. Even creativity, tech knowledge, or even the basic understanding of how software works or the users can find it useful is of equal importance to just programming knowledge.

The new trend can be seen as a collaboration between the developer and the configurator to come together and share the responsibility to speed up the process and more than that bridge the gap for needed skilled employees.

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