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The ambition with Nordic IoT Centre is to create a complete ecosystem for the development of IoT comprising development companies, EMS manufacturers and software development companies as well as both Danish and foreign universities, and GTS institutes.
To develop successful IoT products and systems requires the use of many different technical and commercial skills. As most Danish companies do not have access to the necessary multidisciplinary skills, they quickly fall short in the development process. All these skills have now been gathered in the Nordic IoT Centre, for the benefit of Danish companies.
Several studies1 maintain that Danish companies do not currently exploit the potential that exists in digital tools such as data analysis and IoT as highly as leading European countries.
"The readiness to use the digital tools is often limited by the companies’ lack of knowledge about new technologies, and how they can be implemented into existing or new product solutions. Knowledge which FORCE Technology and the Alexandra Institute, as a result of their GTS work, have accumulated over many years,” says Ole Lehrmann Madsen, CEO, Alexandra Institute.
Therefore, the two institutes join forces with the Nordic IoT Centre – a one-stop shop, that helps companies release the IoT potential.
At the Nordic IoT Centre the companies gain access to comprehensive knowledge, skills, and test facilities for the development of successful IoT solutions that can compete on a global level. Hence, the companies can speed up their market entry of their IoT solutions, as they now have one-point-of-access to all the necessary multidisciplinary resources.
“The centre has a broad palette of technical skills in hardware and software, sensor systems, and machine-learning at its disposal – as well as specialist knowledge of product testing and international approvals of IoT solutions. Furthermore, the Nordic IoT Centre is part of a network of specialist and international collaborative partners, which can be drawn upon to help solve specific issues,” explains Juan Farré, CTO at FORCE Technology.
Whether the companies are looking for help with concept development, developing wireless products with artificial intelligence, advice about IoT security, or help with product approvals, there is expert help at hand at the Nordic IoT Centre.
When companies connect their products to the internet, it creates great advantages. Data can be collected from the products and add better functionalities to the products. But it also makes the products more vulnerable. If you want to introduce your quality product to the digital world, security is a very important competitive tool, Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen emphasises. He is Head of the Alexandra Institute's Security Lab, and sees IoT security as an important competitive factor for Danish companies. Therefore, the IoT Centre also offers access to their expertise. He says:
We see that more and more unsafe IoT devices are being hacked and used to attack other parts of the Internet. Last year, major platforms as for example Spotify, AirBnB and the BBC were attacked through poorly protected IoT devices such as hard disk recorders, webcams and routers.
In order to avoid abuse of your IoT products the security issue is essential. But when companies start to figure out how to connect their product to the IoT network, security may not have top priority. And this is unfortunate because it does not have to be an insurmountable project, according to Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen:
IoT security issues must be considered differently than when dealing with traditional products. And when a company moves into a new field, it is fair to seek advice. Perhaps you have already made some considerations about safety or maybe you are starting from scratch. In both cases you can contact us to discuss your options. Together with other partners such as Kamstrup and HOUNÖ we believe that addressing these IoT security issues does not have to be an impossible task.
In addition, FORCE and the Alexandra Institute collaborate around certification and standardisation of security demands for IoT products. The goal is to help to meet the growing scepticism towards IoT products and thus release their potential.
The Nordic IoT Centre is also in charge of a number of test facilities throughout Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. Here, the companies can have their IoT products and systems tested, thereby ensuring that the IoT solutions live up to international regulations and standards required for market access.