IoT: How to Avoid Store Bandwidth Problems

2 minute read

You may have heard the phrase “Internet of Things” recently. The Internet of Things, or IoT, is the term used to describe the interconnection of computing devices embedded in everyday objects, enabling them to send and receive data. In retail and restaurants, IoT includes a number of devices such as:

  • Digital signage
  • Wireless printers
  • Dressing room sensors
  • Beacon-based marketing devices
  • High megapixel security cameras
  • Shelf-edge labels to display digital pricing
  • Sensors to read foot traffic for real-time pricing
  • RFID tracking tags and sensors for inventory and asset management

And that’s just a fraction of the devices! Is there even enough bandwidth left for customer WiFi?

So, while IoT is positioned to drastically change the customer interaction experience, it’s also positioned to suck A TON of your store’s bandwidth. How can you ensure that your network is up and running at full speed when you need it and keep all of your “things” performing at optimal levels? See below to see how you can avoid store bandwidth problems when implementing new store technology.

Create a Schedule

Before you roll your eyes about a seemingly analog solution to a digital problem, think it over. There are plenty of items that run during the day that you may not need to connect to the Internet during working hours. For example, for any training materials, internal documents, and collaborative projects that don’t need regular updating during the day, schedule them to sync after you’ve closed up for the night or before you open in the morning. Back up your digital security video at night instead of in a continuous stream during the day.

Turn Them Off

If you’re not using some of the mobile devices at the store, disconnect them from the network or, simpler yet, just put them into sleep mode!

Don’t Open Up Your Network

These days, we’re used to walking into a business and connecting to the wireless network. As a business owner, you may want to offer all conveniences to your customers, but you may not be able to give up a share of your network that delivers acceptable speeds for them while retaining enough bandwidth for the store’s network needs. While you can’t always control customer use of the WiFi (if you offer it), you can control the employee use of the network. It may ruffle some feathers, but blocking employee use of the wireless network can save you some bandwidth as well.

More and more, customers are coming to expect wireless access, and the Internet of Things looks to keep adding more and more devices. If you haven’t planned to expand your network’s bandwidth yet, it may be a good idea to do some research and get that in the budget-if not for your customers, then for your own use.

launching a mobile training program playerlync