What is the internet of things?
The internet of things aka IoT is something that increases the power of the internet beyond other smart gadgets. It is a system that is related to internet-connected devices. IoT is the focal point of the revolution of digital transformation and it is influencing everything such from how we operate or manage our homes, offices to automating processes.
As I said above, the internet of things affects everything that includes shopping, traveling, and manufacturing. If you think IoT is just an ordinary network like everything else then let me clear you on that because it is not. The internet of things is a huge network. It connects people and things. Other than that it collects and shares data about the environment around them. It talks about the number of different objects such as smart household gadgets, self-driving cars, smartwatches and glasses, fitness devices. Basically, every object has a sensor attached to it.
History of the internet of things
The idea of the internet of things is not new and adding sensors and intelligence to basic devices was discussed throughout between the ’80s and ’90s. However, some people might argue that the actual idea came out way before this. But as we all know, technology was not so advanced back then therefore progress was slow that made it hard to be done efficiently. Objects could not communicate smartly and chips were bigger and bulkier than today.
A less costly processor was enough but obviously disposable processors were also needed at the same time. However, lower power chips aka RFID tags saved some time and were able to communicate wirelessly. In addition, the availability of broadband internet and cellular internet networks also solved some issues. The name ‘the internet of things‘ came out in 1999 by Kevin Ashton but it was not easy for technology to catch up with the vision and it pretty much took a decade to finally catch up.
Types of the internet of things
There are reportedly five types of the internet of things that are following;
As the name shows, it refers to the use of IoT for consumer applications and devices. It is also known as CIoT and the products of consumer internet of things include smartphones, wearables, smart assistants, home appliances, etc. it is a leverage for WiFi, Bluetooth, and ZigBee to facilitate connectivity. However, these technologies offer a short range of communication.
Moving on to commercial internet of things that refer to increasing or augmenting home or personal environment. It delivers the benefits of the internet of things to larger venues such as commercial office buildings, supermarkets, stores, hotels, healthcare facilities, and entertainment venues. You can use commercial IoT in various cases that include monitoring environmental conditions, managing access to corporate facilities, and economizing utilities and consumption in hotels and other large venues.
Industrial IoT or IIoT refers to the enlargement of existing industrial systems and it is one of the most effective types of internet of things. It makes the industrial system efficient and productive. You can see the deployments of IIoT in large-scale factories and industries that manufacture plants. IIoT is often associated with industries like healthcare, agriculture, automotive, and logistics.
Let’s talk about infrastructure IoT. It talks about the development of smart infrastructure that integrates technologies of the internet of things to boost maintenance and efficiency. Infrastructure IoT can monitor and control operations of urban and rural infrastructures that include bridges, railway tracks, and on- and offshore wind farms.
The internet of military things aka IoMT
Moving on to the internet of military things also known as IoMT. It also refers to battlefield IoT or the internet of battlefield things. There is no hard and fast rule to understand this type of IoT because it is what it sounds like. The main purpose of IoMT is to increase situational awareness, support risk assessment, and improvement in response time.
Applications for IoMT include connecting ships, planes, tanks, soldiers, drones, and even Forward Operating Bases via an interconnected system. Other than that IoMT also produces data that can help to improve military practices, systems, equipment, and strategy.
How does the internet of things work?
Now that we know pretty much everything about the internet of things, let’s talk about its working method. I personally did not know a single thing about IoT before today. But as we all know that knowledge is wisdom.
Sensors attached to devices and objects are connected to the internet of things platform that collects data from different devices and analytically shares valuable information with applicants.
You might be thinking how can these platforms know which information is valuable and which is not but as I told you before, IoT is a giant and powerful network and it can easily pinpoint the exact useful information and data and ignore the ones that are not useful at all.
Example of the internet of things
Let’s take a simple example. You are an owner of a car manufacturing company, you need to know what specifications your customer might need in his car. Therefore; you use the internet of things to know about optional components that are popular. The information provided by IoT, connected devices will help you to make smart and good decisions just so you can manufacture a good car.
Why does the internet of things matter?
Living in a digital era and still asking the question of why technology is important, does not matter. Everything that is connected to the internet is important and matters because it sends and receives information across different platforms. And the ability to send and receiving information and data makes life smart and easier. Who doesn’t need an easy life?
For instance, let’s talk about smart household gadgets or smartphones. These things make your day-to-day life and communication better than before. You can be anywhere in the world and still be able to listen to your favorite broadcast or watch a movie just by requesting it and when your smartphone collects the provided information, it starts working on it.
Pros and cons of the internet of things
I always say this, everything has its own advantages and disadvantages. So as the internet of things.
Let’s start with the pros;
- It can access information from anywhere, any time, any device!
- Helps to improve communication between connected electronic devices
- It helps to transfer data packets over a connected network that saves your money and time.
- Improves business services with automated tasks
- Reduce the need of human intervention
Time for the cons;
- It’s good to send and receive data and information but the number of connected devices increases the risk of hacking. Potential hacker can easily steal confidential information
- One bug in a system can corrupt every connected device
- No international compatibility standards make communication hard between different manufacturers
- Collecting data from millions of devices can be hard and challenging for the internet of things.
I hope you understood the purpose of this pretty much lengthy article. You can get answers to every question because I have discussed every vital information regarding the internet of things. It is an idea that came out long before technology got advanced and has changed almost everything till now.
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