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A Guide to Choosing the Right IoT Processor for Your Company

November 05, 2019 / CRYSTAL BEDELL

The Internet of Things encompasses literally anything, from wearables to automobiles and everything in between. While form factors, connectivity, functionality  and myriad other factors — may differ from one “thing” to another, every connected device must have a processor. However, even processors can vary widely, and companies have to make a number of decisions when selecting one. “The processor is the heart of a semiconductor,” says Bill Ray, Gartner senior research director. “It does the mathematics. It runs the program.” As an example, Ray said a sensor in a thermostat may collect temperature data, but that data can’t go directly to a communications chip. “The processor takes the data and packages it and sends it to the communications chip. If the data hasn’t changed, the processor may determine that there’s no need to send it again,” he says. An IoT processor is not to be confused with a system on a chip, which “contains a radio chip, memory, processor and connectivity all bundled up into one piece of silicon,” Ray says. “Currently, with the IoT, we see a lot of variation in processors.