What is the IoT?

By now you have very likely come into contact with the acronym “IoT”, probably from a conversation where the word was very casually thrown around. While you have established a vague idea of what this term could mean, you are probably one of the participants that take a back seat in such conversations knowing that your knowledge on the concept needs a bit of brushing up. Well, we are here to enlighten you!

What Exactly is the IoT?

IoT is an acronym for the phrase “Internet of Things” and in the simplest of explanations it refers to the millions – no make it billions of physical devices around the world that are connected to the internet and work seamlessly at collecting and sharing data. This collecting and transferring of data over networks requires absolutely no human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction and this is what make IoT a brilliant advance in our current technology.

What Are Examples of Internet of Things Devices?

The amazing thing about this technology is that anything can be transformed into an IoT device with just a little innovation. As long as the device has been developed to connect to the internet and can communicate without the interference from humans, then essentially it can fall into the category of the Internet of Things. To elaborate on how IoT devices can work, however, here are a few examples of IoT devices:

• A light that can be switched on using a smartphone application

• A car that has built-in sensors that alert the driver of any mechanical interferences in the vehicle

• Livestock with biochip transponders that alert farmers on the health status of their animals (information is usually sent to a smart device)

• A heart monitor implant that sends information of one’s heart status to the patient’s specialist

• At an even larger scale, many countries are now building smart cities where sensors are being installed to help governments understand and control the environment!

What is the Purpose of the IoT?

The purpose of IoT is to streamline the day-to-day functioning of things or to gather and transfer data that could potentially help us to prevent disasters or mishaps before they occur. The information that is gathered through the IoT also has the potential to make a ground-breaking and positive difference to absolutely everything we as humans do in life!

Organisations in numerous industries are using IoT devices to operate more efficiently while learning how to better understand their customers and thus improve on their services.

How Popular is the Internet of Things?

It’s extremely popular and growing ever more so by the day. In fact, did you know that there are already more connected things than people in the world – insane, right? Analysts predict that by 2020 there will be around 20.4 billion IoT devices worldwide and most of them will be found in China, North America and Western Europe. About half of these devices will be consumer products like smart TVs and smart speakers. The most widely used enterprise IoT devices will be smart electric meters and commercial security cameras – although this could change with the introduction of new technology and consumer demands.

For more information on IoT or if you would like to discuss a potential IoT product or idea, please contact the Epicdev team at info@epicdev.co.za

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