Microsoft Azure IoT Hub

The creation of your Internet Of Things (IoT) device will require extensive back-end development as well as device development. Fortunately, you can simplify, speed up and reduce the cost of your back-end development by using off-the-shelf components. This helps you focus more on the unique aspects of your devices services and less about the nuts and bolts of the infrastructure. Microsoft have cloud based it solutions to provide the infrastructure for your back-end development called Azure IoT Hub.

How Do azure cloud based it solutions work?

Your IoT Device will send (and receive) data to the IoT hub using a standard protocol such as HTTPS, AMQP or MQTT. Note that HTTPS is polling based so your device can only receive messages once every 25 minutes. AMQP and MQTT are more real-time focused than this.

Azure has many other services that can then be plugged into the IoT Hub to process received messages. In the example diagram, we show a Service Bus (Queue or Topic) that has been configured to receive the messages that have been sent to the IoT hub from the device. The messages can then be handed off to some application-specific computer programming. In this example, we show the message being received by an Azure function. The Azure function may access a database to save or load up some information to decide what action to take next.

As an example, the IoT device may send a message to the IoT Hub to turn off all the lights in the building. The IoT hub puts the message on the Service Bus queue. The Azure function then looks up the addresses of the lights from the DocumentDb database. The Azure function then issues “turn off” messages to all of the lights in the building!


Azure IoT Cloud Service

Azure provides many more commonly needed services to assist with developing back-end solutions for IoT including:

  1. Digital Twins to allow programs to easily manipulate device state.
  2. Event grids for large scale handling of device and system events.
  3. Device provisioning services for securely creating devices.
  4. Azure Machine Learning for predicting future malfunctions.
  5. IoT Edge to do pre-processing on IoT devices etc.

Azure IoT Hub and the associated Azure IoT Cloud Services, are a great platform to reduce time and costs and improve quality of back-end services for IoT devices.

If you are interested in McKenna Consultants building your IoT back-end, please fill in the form below. Or, contact us to discuss the varied IoT services we offer including: IoT App Services, IoT Systems Integration, IoT Smart Devices.

Nick McKenna
Since 2004, Nick McKenna, BSc, MBCS Biography has been the CEO of McKenna Consultants. McKenna Consultants is a bespoke software development based in North Yorkshire, specialising in Cloud development, mobile App development, progressive web App development, systems integration and the Internet of Things development. Nick also holds a First Class Degree in Computer Science (BSc) and wrote his first computer program at the age of nine, on a BBC Micro Model B computer. For the last 21 years, Nick has been a professional computer programmer and software architecture. Nick’s technical expertise includes; Net Core, C#, Microsoft Azure, Asp.Net, RESTful web services, eProcurement, Swift, iOS mobile development, Java, Android mobile development, C++, Internet Of Things and more. In addition, Nick is experienced in Agile coaching, training and consultancy, applying modern Agile management techniques to marketing and running McKenna Consultants, as well as the development of software for clients. Nick is a Certified Enterprise Coach (Scrum Alliance), SAFe Program Consultant (SAI), Certified LeSS Practitioner (LeSS) and Certified Scrum@Scale Practitioner. Outside the office, Nick is a professional scuba diver and he holds the rank of Black Belt 5th Dan in Karate.