IoT is short for Internet of Things. The Internet of Things refers to the ever-growing network of physical objects that feature an IP address for internet connectivity, and the communication that occurs between these objects and other Internet-enabled devices and systems
So What Is The Internet Of Things?
Simply put, this is the concept of basically connecting any device with an on and off switch to the Internet (and/or to each other). This includes everything from cellphones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, lamps, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of. This also applies to components of machines, for example a jet engine of an airplane or the drill of an oil rig. As I mentioned, if it has an on and off switch then chances are it can be a part of the IoT. The analyst firm Gartner says that by 2020 there will be over 26 billion connected devices… That’s a lot of connections (some even estimate this number to be much higher, over 100 billion). The IoT is a giant network of connected “things” (which also includes people). The relationship will be between people-people, people-things, and things-things.
How the Internet of Things will change our lives
Soon every device you own – and nearly every object you can imagine – will be connected to the Internet. Whether it’s through your phone, wearable tech or everyday household objects, the Internet of Things (IoT) will connect us in ways we can’t even imagine yet.
Your thermostat, alarm system, smoke detector, doorbell and refrigerator may already be “networked”, but changes are starting to take root in our cities as well. Better management of energy, water, transportation and safety are bringing people in closer touch with their surroundings and capturing our imaginations for urban bliss – a fully integrated, smart, sustainable city. Last but not least, we’re seeing dramatic increases in activity and innovation on the factory front, where the potential for cyber-physical systems to improve productivity in the production process is vast.
As you can imagine, life in ten years will look materially different from how it looks in 2016 as the pace of technology change accelerates, thanks in large part to the coming boom of the Internet of Things. In some ways, IoT still feels like empty tech jargon. It’s hard to lump all these different, disparate things together and talk about them in a meaningful way. So, in an attempt to make sense of this emerging technology, let’s look at what plans are afoot to build an IoT future.