Briefly Explained: The Internet of Things (IoT)
It is no hidden truth that our lives today are highly influenced by digital technology that surrounds us. For that matter, the first thing we do in the morning is to check our smartphones. It could be for work purposes, entertainment updates, or to check what time it is. And let’s face it––from then onwards, every task that needs to be done requires their assistance.
Times have evolved, and the human brain has outdone itself in the form of the Internet of Things, IoT, in short.
Thus, what is the Internet of Things (IoT)?
It brings ‘things’ or devices on a global network that consists of similar tools. It enables them to communicate with one another and assist people (both consumers and manufacturers) in their everyday life. It is essential not to confuse IoT with the Internet of People. The latter enables communication among a chain of people, whereas the former creates an efficient channel of communication among smart devices over the internet.
If you look around yourself, chances are you would notice several devices that fall under this life-changing technology.
What devices are we talking about?
Any device that has built-in sensors connects itself to the internet and can share information with other smart devices that come under the IoT. Some of the many examples include fast cars, televisions, air conditioners, refrigerators, security cameras, light bulbs, thermostats, and printers. All these devices have standard features of being connected to the Wi-Fi, the ability to sense as well as communicate.
How does it work for consumers?
The most common example is that of a smart bracelet or watch. Most people own one and wear at most hours of the day. It measures heart rate, knows how many steps have been taken and what time they go to bed. Because the bracelet is an IoT device, it is functioned to impart the user’s health pattern to respective departments. It might share the heart rate history or a particular sleeping pattern with a local clinic or even a fitness application that the user downloaded. If an emergency strikes, this IoT device might be able to help him/her just in time by sending data analytics to other concerned devices.
How does it work for manufacturers?
These IoT devices are doing wonders in the manufacturing industries as well. Remember, the information retrieved from these devices are being transmitted through sensors to the respective manufacturers. They continuously receive data analytics and pick out meaningful information to improve and keep track of their products.
An example of this is a smart traffic camera. These cameras are designed to analyze traffic blockades and accidents. If an accident occurs near an airport location, the sensors would sense it and communicate with nearby smart cameras informing the air traffic control towers and thus signaling them to reschedule flights for the convenience of the passengers stuck in traffic.