Notes: (AWS re:Invent 2020 IOT203) Defining Your Strategy for a Successful IoT Implementation


If you are about to start an IoT project, this IOT203 sharing uses the “working backwards” method to push back and define customers.

Roughly disassemble the entire project cycle into three paragraphs: “Idea”, “Prototype”, and “Production”. Each paragraph has its own pits to step on.

If you want to go faster (say less than half year), you can find the original professional service. If you want to try it yourself, doing customer definition and previewing existing architecture reference in AWS IoT Solution Repository are the two cornerstones.


Defining your strategy for a successful IoT implementation


  • Massimiliano Angelino, AWS Speaker (Principal Specialist Solutions Architect, IoT, AWS)



Challenges posed by IoT projects

  • Lack of vision
  • Lack of strategy
  • Skill shortage
  • Incomplete requirements
  • No clear business case
  • Security concerns
  • Constrained analytical capabilities
  • Complexity
  • Data management


(Note: refer to the comparison of Solution space and Problem space in DDD.)

IT/OTBusiness Technology
Slow-cycle, annual planningFast-changing
Resource drivenOutcome driven
Complicated problemsComplex problems

Phase 1 - Idea

"We innovate by starting 
with the customer and 
working backwards" 

-Jeff Bezos
Founder and CEO, Amazon
  • Press release

Customer Questions

  1. Who is the customer?
  2. What is the customer’s problem or oppotunity?
  3. What is the most important customer benefit?
  4. How do you know what customers need or want?
  5. What does the customer experience look like?

Reference: What is Amazon’s approach to product development and product management?

Here’s an example outline for the press release:

  • Heading - Name the product in a way the reader (i.e. your target customers) will understand.
  • Sub-Heading - Describe who the market for the product is and what benefit they get. One sentence only underneath the title.
  • Summary - Give a summary of the product and the benefit. Assume the reader will not read anything else so make this paragraph good.
  • Problem - Describe the problem your product solves.
  • Solution - Describe how your product elegantly solves the problem.
  • Quote from You - A quote from a spokesperson in your company.
  • How to Get Started - Describe how easy it is to get started.
  • Customer Quote - Provide a quote from a hypothetical customer that describes how they experienced the benefit.
  • Closing and Call to Action - Wrap it up and give pointers where the reader should go next.

Phase 2 - Prototype

Prototyping phase

  • Lack of skills –> Engage AWS Prototyping team and partners
  • Time spent on building the infra –> Build on solutions and managed services
  • Undertakings that are too complex –> Focus on quick wins
"If you're good at course 
correcting, being wrong may 
be less costly than you think, 
whereas being slow is going 
to be expensive for sure."

-Jeff Bezos
Founder and CEO, Amazon
"Letter to Shareholders," 2017

3-day onsite visit
Half of day follow-up
2 weeks to prototype

"We're impressed with the speed of 
the solution. We can now retrieve 
the operational data and fault codes 
of a truck in less than 1 minutes"

Workshop personnel, Scania

Phase 3 - Production

Going into production challenges

  • Device manufacturing
  • Connectivity
  • Device lifecycle
  • Security
  • Geographical footprint

AWS Well-Architected Tool


  • Operational excellence
  • Security
  • Reliability
  • Performance efficiency
  • Cost optimization

How AWS can help

  • 175+ services
  • 1000s of customers - AWS Professional Service
  • AWS Partner Network (APN) - Resources

AWS IoT Services

AWS Professional Services

  • ecofit
  • TOYOTA connected


Your next IoT project

  • Focus on business outcomes
  • Deliver results
  • Build on solid foundations

See more customer stories

  • iRobot
  • Woodside Energy
Loading comments…