IoT failures and digital problems occur for 64% of consumers, according to a new study. The 10,000 respondents also reported fears over its increasing involvement in the automotive and healthcare sectors, with 85% concerned about a self-driving car malfunctioning and 62% not trusting IoT medical devices

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Almost two-thirds of consumers using Internet of Things technologies have experienced IoT failures, according to a new report.

Software intelligence company Dynatrace’s survey of 10,000 consumers also showed they encounter an average of 1.5 digital problems every day.

A further 62% worry the number of issues will only increase as IoT tech – a network of devices connected to each other via the internet – becomes more prevalent.

The findings also represent bad news for the automotive and healthcare sectors, with 85% of respondents being concerned that self-driving cars will malfunction, and a further 62% said they would not trust an IoT device to administer medication.

Senior vice-president of marketing at Dynatrace and digital performance expert Dave Anderson said: “The delivery chain behind every connected device is extremely complex.

“Businesses are already struggling with cloud complexity, but IoT magnifies this with sensors, masses of new data and dynamic containerised workloads.

“Consumers are already reporting problems with everything from medical applications, smart meters, car door locks and virtual personal assistants, to smart thermostats and fridges.

“Their patience is at an all-time low and they simply won’t tolerate a poor experience. Yet, we haven’t even seen the era of IoT take off to its full potential – it’s just getting started.

“The imperative is on companies to find ways to process, analyse and manage the IoT delivery chain holistically, and with deep insight, so they know exactly what’s happening and where issues are arising in real time. This is not an easy task.”

Around 52% of consumers worldwide are using some form of IoT technology, according to the report.

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Senior vice president of marketing at Dynatrace Dave Anderson


IoT failures: Stalling the automotive sector

Out of the 85% of IoT users who fear an automated car malfunctioning, 72% feel it is likely software glitches will be the cause.

More worryingly for companies working on autonomous vehicles, 84% of those surveyed said they wouldn’t use a self-driving car for fear of software glitches leading to serious injury or death.

Mr Anderson said: “The reality is IoT glitches could be fatal.

“Consumers are understandably concerned and that’s why it will be important for the industry to demonstrate it’s taking a new, more robust approach to ensure software doesn’t compromise our safety.”

In slightly less dire but equally problematic news for the sector, 86% of consumers worry that digital locks will lock them out of their vehicles, while 67% predict serious issues on the roads as a direct result of problems with smart city traffic lights.


IoT failures: Plaguing healthcare

Dynatrace’s survey also presents a problem for the healthcare sector, which is seeking to digitally transform in multiple areas.

Out of the 62% of consumers who would not trust IoT devices to administer medication, older age ranges are the most fearful, with 74% of those over 55 expressing distrust.

Respondents also reported concerns about the use of IoT devices to monitor vital signs like heart rate and blood pressure, with 85% feeling that performance issues with these types of IoT devices could compromise important clinical data.

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Mr Anderson said: “The old ways of managing IT and software simply don’t work against this extremely convoluted IT environment.

IoT creates many blind spots and an additional layer of complexity.

“That’s why the early, successful IoT adopters take the view that AI is the answer; to make sense of the complexity, map the IT environment end-to-end, pick up problems immediately and with precision, and offer up answers for fast resolution.

“That’s the only way to master the IoT era, which is already upon us. Consumers want perfect IoT experiences.

“Become masters of this new IT universe or you’ll miss out on the opportunity IoT presents.”