IoT Failures: Should Consumers Be Worried?

Worldwide, 52 percent of consumers now rely on what you could class as Internet of Things devices in some capacity

According to software intelligence company Dynatrace, 64 percent of them have experienced performance issues. The survey of 10,000 consumers, entitled “IoT Consumer Confidence Report: Challenges for Enterprise Cloud Monitoring on the Horizon,” found that respondents experienced 1.5 digital problems per day on average, and 62 percent worry about a rise in the number of problems they encounter due to the rise of IoT technology.

The bottom-line conclusion of the report: Escalating IT complexity, fueled by cloud technology, will be the norm, and organizations need to ensure they’re appropriately implementing IoT monitoring and focusing on performance.

Overall, consumers are cautious about the IoT and medicine. Among those surveyed, 62 percent stated they would not trust IoT devices to administer medicine. Among those aged 55 and older, 74 percent felt IoT devices are untrustworthy. Even more basic tasks elicited distrust: 85 percent of consumers believe performance issues related to monitoring vital signs, including blood pressure and heart rate, could lead to compromised data and negative outcomes for patients.


Self-driving cars garner much of the attention in term of IoT, but consumers are concerned. Eighty-five percent of respondents are worried that self-driving cars are vulnerable to malfunctioning, potentially leading to potentially lethal high-speed crashes and other dangers. Seventy-two percent of respondents believe software glitches will cause serious injuries and deaths. Overall, 84 percent of consumers state they won’t use self-driving cars due to the potential for software bugs. Eighty-six percent of respondents are worried that IoT technology will leave them locked out of their vehicles, and 67 percent predict problems on the road due to performance issues with smart traffic lights.


Bugs in smart home technology will leave residents locked out of their houses, according to 73 percent of the surveyed consumers. Sixty-eight percent believe homeowners won’t be able to control the temperature of their homes due to IoT malfunctions, and 64 percent worry about not being able to control their lights. In total, 83 percent of consumers fear losing control of their homes due to problems with IoT technology. Concerns about finances arose in the survey as well: 81 percent of consumers worry about being overcharged for utilities due to problems with smart meters.

The IoT holds tremendous promise. However, the sheer volume of IoT devices coming to the market is staggering, and the rate of adoption is only expected to skyrocket in the coming years. Dynatrace’s research shows that consumers are skeptical that software reliability in IoT devices is sufficient for the types of tasks IoT devices are expected to adopt in the coming years, and most people who’ve used technology in the past know just how finicky software can be. As the IoT continues carving out a role in our daily lives, including in our vehicles and in our healthcare systems, it’s critical that companies unveiling technology put in the needed planning to deal with complexity and invest in the right hardware and cloud technologies.