Life moves fast. Technology moves faster. The Internet of Things (IoT) is upon us full force, and it’s only growing in scope and influence. But what is it? You can think of it as the next step in our digital lives. A technological shift in communication between devices, computers, and other equipment. The Internet is no longer just a place we visit, but a connector of the various facets of daily life. Use this essential guide to understanding life with the Internet of Things.
Understanding the Internet of Things
IoT is a growing network of objects that communicate with each other AND can complete tasks without human involvement. It is composed of the things themselves, the networks that connect them, and the analytics of the data flowing from device to device. Read on to discover the essentials of the world of IoT.
1) Define “thing.”
The “thing” component of IoT is any item or device that houses a connected computing device. It could be an otherwise non-computerized item like a shipping container with a RFID tag. It includes small items like a smartwatch sending fitness data to a server on the Internet. Tablets, appliances, and even entire buildings.
2) The world is getting smarter.
Think smart homes, smart cars, and even smart buildings. Your house may soon be equipped with an intelligent oven, a smart coffee maker, and a smart refrigerator if it isn’t already. Advanced internet-connected home security systems have been infiltrating our homes already for several years. With the arrival of self-driving cars, in the near future, buying a car may involve more about its smart features than color, style, or even fuel efficiency.
3) All about your data.
While consumer interest is growing, the primary source of new IoT devices is coming from the enterprise market. Excitement among businesses regarding IoT is growing mainly around the data it generates. Devices collect the data as you use them. It is then sent back to the server for organization and analysis used in marketing, modeling, product development, and other specialized applications.
4) You will talk to things.
You will likely interact with your connected devices just by talking to them. It will be simple, reliable and context-specific voice interaction. You will operate your toaster, your refrigerator, and other appliances by speaking to them. You will interact with your home using your voice. The more devices and appliances you have connected, the more you will talk to items in your house and even your house itself.
5) Privacy concerns.
Connecting more and more devices to the internet raises security and privacy issues. Hackers can hack into virtually any device connected to the internet and steal your data. Devices with cameras make it possible for the devices themselves to “spy” on you and send data back to the servers. It also makes it possible for hackers to spy on you as well. Security can’t be thought of as a one-time event at initial purchase. It must be ongoing, kept up to date and optimized at all times. More than ever, businesses will want to consider working with an IT consulting firm or using managed IT services to ensure optimal security and privacy.
IoT is here
The shift has begun, but there is still much work to be done. Issues with compatibility, device life, and privacy and security need further considerations. However, IoT is indeed here and growing in scope, breadth, and depth. Devices are already deeply connected and it’s only going deeper. Use this guide to understand the Internet of Things and how it will affect you and your business. Contact Us for more information on privacy, security, and managed IT services.