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smart city and vehicles, wireless communication network, internet of things (IoT), abstract image visual

Internet of Things (IoT) is the most searched term in Google from the technology circuits globally and is sure to stay as a favorite buzz word for some time to come for the analysts, research groups, technology groups, and enterprise fraternity. A market research report from the business insider in 2015 said that by 2019, across the globe 23 billion devices are expected to be integrated to enable us to live smart. Gartner says 26 billion devices will be connected, and other research firms estimate over 100 billion devices connected to the internet over the next decade.

The above stats clearly show the impact that IOT is all set to bring about in our day to day life. IoT, in short, is defined as an integrated network of physical devices embedded with sensors, actuators, programmed software, and connected to the internet for exchanging and sensing data with the operator or other connected devices to perform a smart activity. Key components of IoT also include, network communication systems & computing infrastructure.

Connecting or Integrating 100 billion devices over the next decade can be possibly the biggest ever software development and thereby testing activity ever performed. This scenario calls for global expertise in testing the integrated systems, connectivity & data computing involved in the system. The traditional role of QA/Testing firms is set to change with time to capture the next opportunity of the century. Testing businesses that scale to the IoT challenges will be the pioneers, and early adopters will be the leaders in the segment in the coming days.

Testing companies focusing on IoT testing will need to play their role to perfection in the following areas:

Components Handling

Internet of Things involves a lot of elements that need to come together to make it work. The components to be tested include design hardware, embedded systems, cloud infrastructure, third party software integrators/connectors, network connectivity and data flow between devices, data insights & reporting.

Exception Handling

There will be an undoubtedly expected functionality out of every device connected. Deviation from expected functionality will be the key component to monitor. The things to be taken care of include communication between devices, necessary testing with user manuals, error handling, and accurate calculations.

Performance Monitoring

Performance is the key criteria of any connected network. The key components of performance monitoring may include data transmission accuracy, multi-tenant communication handling, synchronization, device interruptions and performance, consistency record monitoring and device compatibility.

Security Testing

As there will be massive volumes of sensitive data transmitted between devices, there is an increasing concern on the data security in the network. Key components of security testing may include regular monitoring of data packets, identifying data losses and leakages, verifying data encryption/decryption methodology, users’ role and responsibility monitoring.

IoT Test Coverage

The other areas which invite a more functional role include testing of wireless connecting scenarios remotely, virtual testing of devices for smart cities, testing a full range of interfaces. The other major focus area can be the testing of adhering to regulatory compliances that vary across industries and geographies globally.

The IoT testing scope comes with a set of challenges that the testers must live with while testing the application. The issues that pop up have the level of severity which alerts the testers to prioritize test cases. In IoT test coverage, we find multiple tests to be reciprocated many times across the application. Hence test automation plays a key role in the testing. The testing team needs to focus on core components of IoT systems to treat functional and connectivity testing as critical elements of overall testing. The following are the different types of testing performed on IoT systems:

  • Functional Testing
  • Compatibility Testing
  • Usability Testing
  • Network Testing
  • Security Testing
  • Performance Testing
  • Services Testing
  • Operational Testing

We discussed a few areas of testing in the IoT era. Testers will need to reskill themselves and learn today's’ advanced testing methods. Testing IoT systems call for more collaborated and calibrated efforts from the testing fraternity. It is going to be an area of absolute importance to see how this area evolves and the enormous amount of opportunities it may create. Pyramid Consulting’s IoT Testing Center of Excellence caters to all your testing needs. Get in touch with us for further queries.

Carl Johanson

About the author

Carl Johanson

Practice Director, QA & Testing

Carl has been creating custom, forward-focused and effective QA solutions for Pyramid Consulting since 2012. Implementing the latest tech and thought leadership delights Carl just as it does clients. In his personal life, Carl focuses on doing things right and doing the right things—an important distinction—as efficiently as possible. If you need Carl urgently, check out your local drumming scene or the closest beach, otherwise you can find him at home with his beautiful and ever-growing family.

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