Ever wondered what separates humans from other living beings?
Humans are very curious. We have lot of questions. We are the ones who challenge the status quo of existing rules and strive to invent something better. Such curiosity snf efforts have promised us a life where electronic devices and machines will probably become our best friend.
The vision is to make machines smart enough to reduce human effort to almost nil. The idea is of inter-connected devices where the devices are smart enough to share information with humans, to cloud based applications and to each other (device to device).
Smart devices are designed in such a way that they capture and utilize every bit of data which we share or use in everyday life. And these devices will use this data to interact with us on daily basis and complete tasks.
How Big is IoT?
The new wave of connectivity is going beyond laptops and smartphones, it’s going towards connected cars, smart homes, connected wearables, smart cities and connected healthcare. Basically a connected life.
It is estimated that the rise of connected devices over the years is surprising. And we are moving towards a fully automated world.
These devices will bridge the gap between physical and digital world to improve the quality and productivity of life, society and industries. With IoT catching up, Smart homes is the most awaited feature, with brands already getting into the competition with smart applicances. Wearables are another feature trending nowadays on the internet. With launch of Smart Watches and more devices to flow in, these connected devices are going to keep us hooked with the inter-connected world.
Smart Appliances like thermostat, smart refrigerator to name a few are most liked by the customers and seem to change the way we operate.
Now, to give a glimpse of how applications of IoT will transform our lives few areas are listed down where IoT is much awaited and companies are preparing to offer you smart devices.
With IoT creating the buzz, ‘Smart Home’ is the most searched IoT associated feature on Google. But, what is a Smart Home?
A smart home is one in which the various appliances are wired up to a central computer control system so they can either be switched on and off at certain times (for example, heating can be set to come on automatically in winter mornings) or if certain events happen (lights can be set to come on only when a photoelectric sensor detects that it’s dark).
Most homes already have a certain amount of “smartness” because many appliances already contain built-in sensors or electronic controllers. Virtually all modern washing machines have programmers that make them follow a distinct series of washes, rinses, and spins depending on how you set their various dials and knobs when you first switch on.
All these things are examples of home automation, but they’re not really what we mean by a smart home. That concept takes things a step further by introducing centralized control. In the most advanced form of smart home, there’s a computer that does what you normally do yourself: it constantly monitors the state of the home and switches appliances on and off accordingly. So, for example, it monitors light levels coming through the windows and automatically raises and lowers blinds or switches the lights on at dusk. Or it detects movements across the floor and responds appropriately: if it knows you’re home, it switches light and music on in different rooms as you walk between them.
Wearables are experiencing a explosive demand in markets all over the world. Companies like Google, Apple, Samsung have invested heavily in building such devices.
Wearable devices are installed with sensors and softwares which collect data and information about the users. This data is later pre-processed to extract essential insights about user.
These devices broadly cover fitness, health and entertainment requirements. The pre-requisite from internet of things technology for wearable applications is to be highly energy efficient or ultra-low power and small sized.
Nowadays , the attention is growing towards enhancing the in-car experience.
A connected car is a vehicle which is able to optimize it’s own operation, maintenance as well as comfort of passengers using onboard sensors and internet connectivity.
Most large auto makers as well as some brave startups are working on connected car solutions.
Industrial Internet of Things
Industrial sector has a new buzz with Industrial Internet, also termed as Industrial Internet of Things ( IIoT ). It is empowering industries with sensors, software and big data analytics to create brilliant machines.
The idea behind IIoT is that, smart machines are more accurate and consistent in communicating through data. And, this helps companies pick problems and inefficiencies sooner.
IIoT holds great potential for quality control. Applications for tracking goods, real time information exchange about inventory among suppliers and retailers and automated delivery will increase the supply chain efficiency.
Another application of IOT is Smart city.It has generated a great curiosity among world’s population. Smart surveillance, automated transportation, smarter energy management systems, water distribution, urban security and environmental monitoring all are examples of internet of things applications for smart cities.
IoT will solve major problems faced by the people living in cities like pollution, traffic congestion and shortage of energy supplies etc.
By installing sensors and using web applications, citizens can find free available parking slots across the city. Also, the sensors can detect meter tampering issues, general malfunctions and any installation issues in the electricity system.
IoT in Agriculture
Demand for food supply has been raising with the continuous increase in world population.. Governments are helping farmers to use advanced techniques and research to increase food production. Smart farming is one of the fastest growing field in IoT.
Farmers are using meaningful insights from the data to yield better return on investment. Sensing for soil moisture and nutrients, controlling water usage for plant growth and determining custom fertilizer are some simple uses of IoT.
IOT in Healthcare
The concept of connected healthcare system and smart medical devices bears enormous potential not just for companies, but also for the well-being of people in general. Connected healthcare yet remains the sleeping giant of the Internet of Things applications.
Research shows IoT in healthcare will be massive in coming years. IoT in healthcare is aimed at empowering people to live healthier life by wearing connected devices.
The collected data will help in personalized analysis of an individual’s health and provide tailor made strategies to combat illness.
The future of IoT is more fascinating than this where billions of things will be talking to each other and human intervention will become least. IoT will bring macro shift in the way we live and work.