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The evolution of embedded devices: Addressing complex design challenges

Phil Burr, arm, Sept. 18, 2018 – 

Embedded devices used to be relatively straightforward to design before the Internet of Things. The designer of an appliance, industrial controller or environmental sensor only needed to interface the input signals, process with a microcontroller and provide output control. Systems were standalone; and other than reverse engineering, there was no incentive for a hacker to access a system.

With the introduction of the smartphone, we now expect our devices to be smart, upgradable and accessible over the Internet. Security is not optional - if security is not taken seriously, data, brand reputation and revenue streams will all be affected. Also, embedded systems are becoming more complex and you can't be an expert in everything! Fortunately, you can use existing standards and stack libraries to get a project completed in a timely, secure way.

This article outlines the key design challenges an embedded developer faces today, and some of the new technologies that will help designers address these challenges.

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