I'm involved in a large IoT related project. I recently became aware of IOTA and became quite excited when I read through the white paper. From what I could understand (which was admittedly limited), it seemed to solve some real problems that we are faced with.
But I have to say, after reading up over the weekend and trying to understand what it can and cannot do, I'm starting to have my doubts. So please forgive my ignorance. I have a few questions that I hope someone would be kind enough to answer, and hopefully dispel my concerns:
1) As far as I can see, the current development focus seems to be entirely focused on the trading of tokens. Is that correct? Given that all the tokens have already been generated (and I assume distributed between the various people originally involved), the fact that these tokens are now listed on the exchanges at a non-zero price leads one to wonder, what this project is really about? It's admittedly a very neat way to generate a whole lot of cash and thus maybe a good way to fund all the effort involved to date (after all, we all need some source of funding). But I am less interested in the current crypto coin price frenzy, than the utility of the underlying technology. So my question is, is trading of a new type of crypto token/coin the main focus of this project?
2) The thing that caught my eye was the claimed potential for zero transaction cost, high scalability, and fast transaction speeds. I am particularly very interested in the ability to send data from one device to another on a self propagating distributed network. But on further investigation, I see that some of those things may not really work the way I hoped they would? Certainly I understand that there is no fee payable to miners, which I think is very innovative. But if you just want to send some data from one device to another, and possibly store a record of that immutably in the Tangle, then you also need to send a token, which one needs to buy, so hence there is a fee payable to send data (admittedly this may be very small, but in a use case which needs high volumes of data transfer between devices, this overall fee could become potentially substantial). Also this means that data transfer cannot happen without available tokens, which leads to potential liquidity problems and thus high price volatility and cost uncertainty - which is one of the weaknesses of BTC which I was trying to avoid (eg. running an industrial process which is dependent on a token which is also being seen as a "get rich quick" means of speculation by some people can make the whole concept a non starter - especially in conservative business environments).
Further, it seems that at this point, it sometimes takes quite long to complete transactions (I understand that this whole system is still in development), but is the current delay a reason to be concerned about future transaction times? For our use case we need very rapid transaction completion times, world-wide.
Please forgive my skeptical tone, it is not meant to denigrate. I really like this concept and am hoping to use it further - I really hope someone can eliminate my concerns.