Windows 10 at the core of future Internet of Things?

While Microsoft pointed out many uses of Windows 10 at its Jan 21 2015 event, it missed out on Internet of Things. Or, at least, did not bring up the topic. It talked about desktop version of Windows 10, mobile version of Windows 10 and Windows 10 for Surface Hub and more but did not drop a hint that it is bringing Windows 10 into the realm of Internet of Things. The article tries to decode how the future of Internet of Things can change with Windows 10 at its core.

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Windows 10 for Internet of Things

In the recent developments, the most important are availability of Windows 10 for a range of devices and the upgraded version of Raspberry Pi. There have been more developments but they are out of scope of this article. We focus on Windows 10 for Internet of Things in this post.

Though they did not mention it specially, the way Microsoft presented Windows 10 at the Jan 21 2015 event, they did drop many hints about having an edition of Microsoft Windows 10 for Internet of Things. One such hint was Surface Hub, which is nothing but a screen in effect but runs on Windows 10. The Holographic glasses will also run on Windows 10. Microsoft has come up with a micro version of .Net framework. All these are ample to suggest that there will be a version of Windows 10 for Internet of Things. And the doubts are cleared with new version of Raspberry supporting Windows 10.

More Coding Options As Windows Does All Essential Work

If Microsoft is offering a custom version of Windows 10, that I believe is named “Windows 10 Athens“, for micro systems and for Single computer boards such as Raspberry PI 2, there is a great scope of people using Windows 10 to build all the small things that will be connected to the Internet. Right now, people are using Linux for IoT (Internet of Things) and most of them code in Python and C++. Both these languages, once into executable form, will not be a problem for running on Windows 10. Every programmer knows that coding in C++ and Python is better and provides total control over hardware. So far, they had to come up with codes that would make the most of the hardware and deal with the compatibility of the operating system running these custom programs. They had to code for proper usage of hardware so that no part of the hardware was clogged and left unavailable for programs.

Notwithstanding the fact that programmers have better control over the hardware required for Internet of Things, the Windows 10 operating system will let them program more easily using more languages. Thus, more people will enter into creating and maintaining Internet of Things. Windows 10 is not about graphics user interface. Even Linux provides one but is bulky compared to Win10. The better part is that it is trimmed down just to suit the single computer boards such as Raspberry Pi 2 and does not waste resources unlike other operating systems. Programmers can now code without having to worry about handling memory properly, for instance. Windows 10 itself handles RAM in way that no part of memory is blocked and is easily available to programs on the IoT things. Likewise, the operating system runs easily on ARM-based processors and handles micro x86 chips easily.

Security of Internet of Things: Micro .NET and Win10 Internal Security

With Microsoft developing a micro version of .NET, security will increase with Windows 10 for Internet of Things. As of now, people do not even care to change their default passwords on things connected to the Internet. The ovens, lighting systems etc come with default passwords such as “passwords”, “1234” or “0000” and end users do not even know that they have to change the password to make themselves safer. All these while, any hacker can take control of these connected devices and use them to initiate a DDoS attack on any website. Since the things of Internet of Things are distributed throughout the globe, it is hard to charge anyone with hacking. Read our article on current security concerns of IoT.

With Windows 10 coming into the picture, along with, the enhanced Micro .NET (that’s what I will call it until it has a formal name announced) things will change as the operating system has focused on security that will be much better than other operating systems in the market as of now. It will be harder for hackers to break into things of Internet of Things.

While Microsoft has been building its own Internet of Things and they stress on security, the other programmers creating their own Internet of Things can now use a lightweight graphical interface to prompt and let the users change the passwords easily.

Windows 10 For IoT: Summary

The future of IoT looks more promising and focuses on the security of connected devices. Windows 10 promises better Internet of Things with one of its edition focusing solely on the functioning and security of the devices used in all households.

To sum up in one line, Windows 10 is all set up to build up a major portion of Internet of Things with its new Windows 10 Operating System and the micro .NET framework as people will prefer the combination for simple UI and enhanced security features.

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Arun Kumar is a Microsoft MVP alumnus, obsessed with technology, especially the Internet. He deals with the multimedia content needs of training and corporate houses. Follow him on Twitter @PowercutIN