The Internet of Things (IoT) is perhaps the most discussed technology topic of today. It’s as widely debated as cloud computing was just a few years ago. And as with any emerging trend, it is also attracting a lot of investment from both private and public sources.

UK Government Investment Acknowledges Growing Importance of IoT

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This year the UK government played a part in enhancing the reputation of IoT as the next big thing by announcing the creation of a new hub dedicated to conducting research into this area of IT.

In total, around £23 million is being spent to get the PETRAS consortium up and running, with universities set to join forces with experts across a range of disciplines, including everything from ethics to security.

But what will this project ultimately achieve, and is the IoT truly capable of changing the world or is it a victim of excessive hype?

Expounding the IoT

During the launch of the project, Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said that the government was eager to ensure that the UK becomes a leader not only in researching IoT technologies but also in developing the devices which will define this impending era of digital evolution. He also explained that enabling universities to collaborate on this R&D process would be invaluable.

In fact, this latest announcement forms just a small part of the government’s wider £40 million IoTUK initiative, which is intended to help both private- and public-sector organisations adopt related devices and services.

Assessing the Risks

The brave new world of unlimited interconnectedness between devices of all shapes and sizes envisioned by exponents of the IoT does come with some problems. And the government is well aware of the need to ensure that security threats posed by the IoT’s emergence can be met head on rather than dealt with reactively after disasters occur.

Businesses will no doubt be urged to used software testing services offered by providers such as bug finders in order to ensure that any IoT-related devices and platforms they adopt can be deployed safely, without putting mission-critical apps and data at risk.

The same will be true of government bodies, which is why the PETRAS consortium will also set out to help build trust and understanding of the IoT in all fields while ensuring that it does meet expectations in terms of functionality.