IoT is a worthwhile investment for virtually any business, providing the automation, efficiency and performance that can differentiate your product or service. However, when deploying hundreds to thousands of IoT devices — sometimes across multiple countries — it can be difficult to manage effectively. This is where IoT remote device access comes into play. Initiating a remote desktop connection to your IoT devices improves your operational flexibility and increases your project efficiency without sacrificing performance or security.
Without further ado, here are 4 benefits of integrating IoT remote device access into your project.
IoT Remote Access Improves… Operational Convenience
One of the major draws of remote desktop connection to your IoT devices is that you don’t have to physically travel to the area of deployment. This is particularly useful when you dealing with hard-to-reach locations or areas that cover a lot of space, such as vineyards.
Whether you need to remotely access your devices for troubleshooting or firmware updates, this can play a vital role in improving your project’s uptime and overall performance. Rather than sending a team of engineers to manually update each IoT device, you can perform the needed changes in real time, drastically cutting time and money spent on operations.
Plus, IoT remote access means that your devices don’t have to wait days or even weeks to be updated because technicians are commuting to the area, fixing any critical bugs as soon as possible and ensuring your devices will be operating at peak performance more often than not.
Here is what George Chrysanthakopoulos, founder dCentralized Systems, LLC, had to say about SORACOM Napter, an on-demand IoT remote access service that empowers IoT projects big and small.
“dCentralized has ground utility robot prototypes deployed across Washington and Oregon. Before we worked with Soracom, if one went dark, we had to get in a car, drive 5 hours and SSH into the unit to triage. With SORACOM Napter, we can SSH into our edge devices from anywhere and quickly resolve issues without any complex network configuration and infrastructure from us.”
With hundreds of IoT devices at your disposal, it can be difficult to ensure that each is working at max capacity without utilizing remote access. It can be months before you realize that a select few haven’t been operating, unnecessarily setting you behind on production.
For smart buildings and other use cases that track crucial data, knowing when devices stop operating in real time and having the capability to access them remotely can save businesses thousands of dollars by enabling them to perform predictive maintenance on their machinery and equipment. Plus, with technicians having to frequently travel to different work sites, remote access can ensure that IoT projects are never left unwatched. This limits the number of service disruptions that can bring operations to a halt, which can improve production time, increase customer service, reduce maintenance costs and more.
In the energy industry, remote desktop connections can enable businesses to measure the flow of energy from the power grid to consumers, ensuring that if an outage occurs, there can be a rapid response regardless of where technicians are located.
Ease of Use
While this isn’t always the case, another benefit of IoT remote access is that it can be extremely easy to integrate into your IoT project.
SORACOM Napter has simplified the IoT remote desktop connection process by eliminating the need for relay servers or installing agent software onto each individual device. This allows virtually anyone to add remote access functionality to their project – meaning you don’t have to be a developer or engineer. Plus, without needing to pre-install software on your devices to enable IoT remote access, you can simplify the manufacturing process, allowing you to go-to-market faster and at a more cost-effective rate.
Whether your IoT project is in the early stages or has been kicking for quite some time, it never hurts to maximize your efficiency.
With IoT remote access, users can properly test their project in-field by measuring each device’s data transfer rate, battery usage, temperature and more. This can provide trackable metrics that can help you project performance and predict cost, adding intelligence to your operations.
For IoT devices that are in the hands of customers, remote access helps them visualize their products as they collect and transfer data to the cloud, improving customer satisfaction and potentially reducing customer service requests.
Which IoT Remote Device Access Service Should I Invest In?
Although there is plenty to like about establishing a remote connection to your IoT devices, there are still some pitfalls that are best to avoid. Linking to your devices across the internet can leave your project vulnerable to external threats, potentially jeopardizing sensitive data.
This is especially true if you’re using a public IP address, which increases security risks as anyone with knowledge of the address has the ability to remotely attack the devices. Plus, without any authentication to remotely connect to your devices, your project can fall victim to brute-force port scans.
Despite the potential security risks associated with remote desktop connection, Soracom understands that the pros outweigh the cons, which is why we developed SORACOM Napter, a remote access service that keeps your data safe and secure.
“We’ve always put IoT security first,” said Soracom CTO and co-founder Kenta Yasukawa. “That’s why we focus on keeping IoT traffic off the public Internet entirely with virtual peering, private subnets, and even hardwire connection where needed.
SORACOM Napter enables IoT developers to establish remote desktop connection on-demand using either the Soracom management console, API or CLI, providing numerous ways for users to stay connected to their projects in real time.
As soon as you enable on-demand remote access, SORACOM Napter automatically assigns a random IP address and port. Once SORACOM Napter receives your connection request using the assigned IP address and port, it will automatically establish the secure remote connection back to your device.
We understand that there are millions of different IoT use cases each utilizing different protocols, which is why we built SORACOM Napter to support SSH, RDP, VNC, HTTP, HTTPS and more, ensuring everyone can integrate IoT remote access capabilities into their projects.
Contact us today to learn more about our intuitive IoT remote access software and other cloud-hosted services.