Do you know that our environment is overloaded with embedded software and it doesn’t matter where you are at home or in your office? Absolutely each electronic device can fulfill smart functions only because it is based on embedded software. For example, routers, computer peripherals, digital cameras, memory sticks, mobile phones, vacuum cleaners, and many other devices that you have at home or in your office are built on embedded solutions.
Nevertheless, embedded firmware development is not as easy as it seems to be at a glance. It’s a long process that requires experience, knowledge, and a professional demeanor. Even the most talented software programmers face some challenges while working on embedded projects. Such systems are in demand so far but working on them is not always easy. And in this post, we’ll take a detailed look at some challenges programmers face while building these solutions.
The thing is that embedded software is always an irreplaceable part of a bigger system (a smartphone, a digital watch, etc.) And these solutions must respond to all actions in real time. Beyond this, such solutions must be unaffected by changes in their operating environment, but processors and hardware components may be changed after a while.
Let’s take a closer look at the fundamental issues coders face while building embedded systems.
Safety is one of the main distinctive features of these systems. In other words, safety is a special feature of embedded systems because of their main application in critical environments. Therefore, the process of building these systems is a bit different. It is characterized by severe limitations in terms of quality, engineering professionalism, and testing. It’s clear that an embedded system must be safe and programmers have to overcome an array of challenges to build an absolutely safe solution.
Stability is another critical issue that must be tackled by programmers to build a safe and stable embedded solution. The thing is that unexpected behavior of such systems is impermissible. Moreover, it can even pose risks! Modern users are too fastidious and that’s why embedded software must be stable in any case and at any rate.
So far, security is one of the hottest issues in the modern digital world. The life of modern users is impossible without IoT devices. As their popularity grows, the same happens with related risks that also grow fundamentally. IoT devices gain popularity worldwide and in some spheres of our life, they are irreplaceable. The thing is that home appliances such as fridges, electric cookers, or washing machines come with connectivity options. Therefore, the Internet of Things is exposed to hacker attacks. To prevent financial and data losses, the developers of embedded solutions must overcome this challenge and integrate security features to protect these devices from scammers.
The thing is that building embedded systems is not easy and one of these limitations is the challenges related to design. Such devices must have low energy, be small, and guarantee long-term performance.
The modern market is too demanding. It requires designers to add more processing power and battery life to small devices. However, a lot is contingent on the application of IoT devices. So far, we can see a rapidly growing demand for the development of scalable processor families and this is where the choice varies from inexpensive and low-power processors to more powerful and configurable devices. And the main obstacle for designers is to build a nice device and overcome all these limitations.
This issue is of the essence for programmers. The thing is that remote updates have always been challenging. For example, if it’s an independent device, in this case, it is enough to send updates to a website and notify all users about the importance of installing it.
However, when it comes to IoT devices, the situation is completely different here. In such a scenario, the updates must be sent without the intervention of users. And this job is complicated and time-devouring. On top of that, it requires specific skills and experience from programmers. To tackle that challenge successfully, they must have enough experience in this niche and understand how to deploy the updates in the IoT environment safely.
Overall, these are the main challenges faced by developers working on embedded solutions. But it’s clear that embedded software is here to stay because it enhances living standards all over the globe. Therefore, if you are eager to achieve success in this niche, you need to follow the latest trends in the area of software development and learn to overcome all related challenges!