Illustration of Digital Twins IoT Development
July 8, 2021

How to Visualize & Accelerate Digital Twins IoT Development

Version Control

The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing the way we physically and digitally interact in the world. With the global IoT market projected to reach nearly $2 trillion by 2028, developers are looking for ways to take advantage of the increasing demand and gain a cutting edge.

For many teams, IoT development combined with using digital twins for verification allows them to make better decisions during development and visually market their devices after launch. How? Game engine technology can take IoT data and make the product visual. Then teams can run diverse tests on interconnected, virtual devices, helping them make better decisions. Marketing can take that visual design and push it to the market.

Discover what you need to take advantage of the growing demand for digitals twins + IoT development.

What is Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a system of interconnected devices that transfers information over a network automatically between everyday objects, without human interference. IoT devices are everywhere, and they’re collecting data teams can use to continually refine their product. This is where digital twins come in.

What is a Digital Twin in IoT?

IoT devices continuously collect data, making them a natural fit for using digital twins. Digital twins take real-world data to make real-time decisions, and IoT devices can continuously provide real-time data.

Digital twins allow designers to be able build virtual products and systems to test and experiment (without a lot of additional cost). The theory is the more data that’s available, the better the decision and product.

What is Digital Twin IoT Development?

The rise of digital twins & IoT is making way for groundbreaking new developments.

Greater Visibility into Products

IoT sensors give greater visibility into the entire product lifecycle. Instead of having to make assumptions on how a user would engage with a product, teams can use IoT data to continuously refine models. This includes physical products, but also additional services and maintenance.

By expanding visibility into a product, teams can take a cross-functional approach to minimize potential rework. For example, Whirlpool is using IoT appliances to collect information on how their products are actually used. Then they can use information to perform tests on digital twins to ensure drums, motors, and other components are improving with each iteration. By improving the product, Whirlpool can ensure customers spend less time and money repairing their product.

Real-Time Insights

Digital twins are one way to visualize real-time data, especially as IoT devices integrate into larger systems. For example, teams can use these connected devices to optimize algorithms. Current and historical data can be combined in the digital twin to improve automated systems.

For example, teams could see how a single asset moves through a manufacturing pipeline. Where does it get held up in the process? How does this relate with lemon products that are delivered to customers? By monitoring the entire system, industries can figure out how to push changes that can have the largest positive impact.

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Challenges in Digital Twins IoT Development

When it comes to developing IoT and digital twins, teams can face some challenges.

Security

Security is the foremost challenge in developing digital twins + IoT products and software. You must be able to secure data during the development process and the data that comes in continuously after launch.

Teams need to make sure that data can be tagged in such a way that the right people — only the right people — have access to the right data. With many systems, you can only give people access to an entire repo of source code. Although it is a best practice to not store database information in your repos, you do not want your version control system to be a gateway to personal information and data.

It is important to set up your system in a way that prevents unwanted access. Multifactor authentication throughout the development process is a must. It is also important to continuously monitor your system for any bad actors. Preventing a hack is not only important for development, but also your company’s reputation; a blow to any brand’s image can result in serious revenue loss.

Connectivity

If you are continuously developing a product, you need to be able to get access to data and make real-time decisions. This means building an infrastructure for IoT development and digital twins that supports developers and designers.

Companies that need to transfer large amounts of data and enormous assets know that it can delay teams. To remove high latency bottlenecks, you need to expand your infrastructure. For example, you could deploy edge servers where your teams are located so they can get access to the latest data in real time. When it comes to producing game engine builds, you can leverage the cloud to create a build server to support rapid rendering. However you set up your development pipeline, it is important that your network and tools work together.

Digital Asset Management

IoT development challenges don’t end at launch. Maintaining the functionality of these devices is the only way companies will keep their customers happy. If you release multiple iterations of a product, each with different software, you’ll need to be able to easily locate and revise the right code when it’s time to release a patch or update.

Also, if you are pulling this information into a game engine, you need a tool that can support the powerful capabilities of Unreal Engine, Unity, and more.

Digital Twins IoT Software — What You Need to Solve Challenges

To get all the benefits of digital twin + IoT development, it is vital to set up your pipeline to manage it all — initial development, continuous data collection, and visualizations. This means storing and managing massive amounts of small data, software iterations, and game engine builds.

Version control is critical to get the most out of your digital twin + IoT. It can help you continuously build and manage data and send out new software versions. Your version control needs to be:

  • Secure to keep your proprietary data safe. Plus, you don’t want your version control to be a gateway to users’ personal data.
  • Scalable to manage ongoing iterations of your products as well as expand your product line and capabilities.
  • Fast to get the most out of your game engine.

Helix Core: Your Version Control Solution

Helix Core — version control from Perforce — has been used by game development companies for years. It is the only system powerful enough to virtualize digital twins and securely store the massive amounts of data that results from IoT development.

Why is Helix Core Best for Building Digital Twins + IoT?

Helix Core delivers the lightning-fast performance companies need. Unlike other version control systems, it can manage all the large digital assets that are involved in development. Plus, it can track changes as they evolve and secure assets down to the individual file.

Binary assets, design files, CAD drawings, and more can all be managed inside a Helix Core depot. Then assets can then be pulled into your game engine. Using Helix Core gives your team a single source of truth, ensuring that you always have the latest version across teams.

Use Helix Core with any popular game engine, including: 

With Perforce Federated Architecture, you can even deliver large files around the globe, enhancing collaboration across teams. Helix Core offers superior performance whether you are on-premises or are using the cloudIf you are using game engines for IoT + digital twins, you can sync and transport large files where you need them without the WAN wait. 

Future of Digital Twin + IoT Development

As more companies use digital twins to build products, they can build up entire IoT ecosystems. This can help teams share more valuable information to build better products.

Set up your teams and products for success. Start with the software that can enable teams to deliver high-performing, secure products faster than the competition.

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