The IoT M2M Council, with 25,000 members, claimed to be the fastest-growing trade association in IoT, has announced a programme to verify that IoT software platforms comply with the open-source benchmarks it has established.
The benchmarks come in the form of a template request for proposal (RFP) that is now available online, developed with input from major IoT software providers, such as PTC, HPE, and Intel subsidiary Wind River, as well as more than 100 software users.
Vendors will pay a fee to have their software assessed and to be validated as ‘Model IoT Providers’ by the IMC. Vendor reviews will be included in the RFPs, which will be broadly circulated, and participating vendors will receive a detailed validation report, which they can use for their own purposes. The impartial review is intended to credibly differentiate for software buyers those platforms that provide functions agreed as necessary by a multitude of vendors and users.
“There’s been an explosion in the number of software packages for IoT applications. Our members buy software, and they’ve made it clear that there is a need for these kinds of ‘hands-on’ buying tools,” said Joel Young, IMC chairman and CTO of IoT technology provider Digi International, “Even those buyers that don’t use formal RFPs in their procurement process tell us that they would find them useful.”
The IMC’s RFP and validation programme will cover technical issues related to software platforms, including connectivity, device management, data analytics, applications development, and security. Young points to recent IMC polling of IoT members that buy software, indicating that 100% of them would find general-purpose RFPs useful, and over 80% would use integrated reviews of platforms to do their vendor sourcing.
Plans call for the IMC to open the RFPs to its membership at the Mobile World Congress Americas, 12-14 September, but software vendors are now undergoing the review process for validation at that launch. Information on the RFP programme can be found at the IMC’s website. The IMC intends to expand the programme to include connectivity services, hardware, and more.