View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. Technology
  2. Cloud
December 21, 2017updated 02 Jan 2018 4:42pm

Christmas set to unleash an avalanche of defunct IoT devices

Ill-advised computing platform choices are producing short-lived devices and wasting investment.

By Sabrina Dougall

Christmas will cause “a generation of defunct devices” by flooding the market with useless Internet of Things paraphernalia. In fact, industry experts predict the majority of connected devices bought this festive period will be obsolete by 2020.

With Garner predicting a colossal 8.4 billion connected devices in use in 2017, Couchbase researchers have found that ill-advised computing platform choices are producing short-lived devices which can waste investment.

Many are turning to edge computing as a smart alternative to chasing lemmings off the cliff of slow internet speeds; it is a truism that a service running in the user’s hand can operate better than one continually accessing a server hundreds or thousands of miles away.


The Tesla Model S EV has a camera, radar and ultrasonic acoustic location sensors to facilitate an autopilot mode.

Indeed, Business Insider Intelligence estimated last year that 5.6 billion IoT devices (both private and public) will leverage edge computing for data collection and processing in 2020. Data experts at Couchbase assert that computing at the edge will be essential for smart devices to meet expectations – meaning a product should be able to perform at least essential functions regardless of its connection. For instance, a driverless car must be able to navigate traffic in the absence of a network failure, and an industrial device should still record performance and offer diagnostics without interruption.

“Unless organisations can focus on computing at the edge, they will end up with a generation of defunct devices and services that simply cannot live up to expectations,” said Perry Krug, Principal Architect at Couchbase. “Consumers and workers want devices that do what they need, not ones that aren’t fit for purpose the moment any signal disappears,”

Siemens turns to AWS to scale Industrial IoT platform
IoT: Pay-and-leave mobile fintech nears British stores

The good news is that prudent computing platform choices can empower staff both within and beyond the IT department.

“2018 will be the year that self-serve IT goes mainstream, as organisations look to become more agile by decentralising IT and empowering internal teams to drive more of their own innovation,” said Ross Mason, Founder and VP Product Strategy at MuleSoft.

Content from our partners
Scan and deliver
GenAI cybersecurity: "A super-human analyst, with a brain the size of a planet."
Cloud, AI, and cyber security – highlights from DTX Manchester

“IT teams will start to teach employees and partners that ‘There’s an API for that’. When the need arises for a new digital function, such as the ability to connect to a SaaS application, non-IT teams will learn to browse the API marketplace to see if that capability already exists.”

Websites in our network
Select and enter your corporate email address Tech Monitor's research, insight and analysis examines the frontiers of digital transformation to help tech leaders navigate the future. Our Changelog newsletter delivers our best work to your inbox every week.
  • CIO
  • CTO
  • CISO
  • CSO
  • CFO
  • CDO
  • CEO
  • Architect Founder
  • MD
  • Director
  • Manager
  • Other
Visit our privacy policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.