21 Jun IoT Tech for Tech Newbies
The internet has been around for a while, and thanks to the internet, we live in a faster paced world. To thrive in that fast paced world, most of us have evolved into technologically savvy people; and for those of us who aren’t, well, we still know how to access the internet at the very least. The world is constantly in a state of change, and IoT tech aims to capitalize on the evolving market. There are many ways to connect your device to the internet, one of the most popular being through Spectrum. Spectrum offers quality services and value-focused bundles through their website www.xyzies.com.
So first of all, what is the Internet of Things? And what is it about the Internet of Things that warrants your attention? You may already be familiar with devices that work with, or rather, work well with the Internet of Things. But still, the concept still escapes you. For the uninitiated, the Internet of Things is a very general, umbrella term that can describe the broad scope of things that can connect to the internet and function well without human interaction, and for this very reason, the smartphone may not really be considered IoT tech.
Sure, it does have some technology in practice that makes it function in the same way. But the need for human command to execute majority of the tasks ensure that it doesn’t make the cut here. However, with the speedy development of artificial intelligence, the line between these devices are blurring with every new release.
If you’re looking for the textbook definition of the Internet of Things, the Oxford dictionary has defined it as “the interconnection via the Internet of computing devices. Embedded in everyday objects, enabling them to send and receive data.” It sounds pretty basic and simple, right? Unfortunately, that isn’t the case here. Think of them as a network of devices that has the capacity to think for themselves. In order to help you with everyday tasks, to a certain extent. With the help of artificial intelligence, some devices even have the ability to predict your needs and commands. This is base on your behavior and the data you allow it to collect. Devices that use the Internet of Things continue to grow from 2018 and beyond. In 2020, it is estimated that a staggering 50 billion devices will be connected.
can vary greatly and may differ in function and appearance. Common examples of these things would be devices that heavily rely but are not limited to sensors, communications technologies, and other Internet of Things gateways. This may all sound a bit confusing, so let’s simplify it a bit more. The Internet of Things works like a sort of ecosystem, and relies on connecting devices and endpoints in order to function seamlessly. Sure, some devices can work on their own, but to use these devices to their maximum potential, it is important to have a myriad of devices that function well as a whole. We use the term ecosystem lightly here. A lot of devices are compatible with each other, which ensures that you always have options if a particular product isn’t to your liking.
How does this work, then?
Your devices, such as fitness trackers and other devices that are made for the Internet of Things, that is, intelligent pieces of hardware, are part of the Internet of Things endpoint. An endpoint’s unique IP address allows it to be identified through the use of the internet, and therefore it is able to send or receive data. Still confused? Don’t worry, let’s use a few examples to clear things up.
The smart home is probably the flagship Internet of Things enabled device.
Imagine coming home in the late afternoon and the lights automatically dim. You walk into the bathtub and you find the heater already on, ready for you to take the dip and just relax. That wouldn’t be too far from the truth. You can connect all these things wireless with your smart devices, and can even do some neat things like setting a schedule to make sure it’s always ready when you are.
Another example of IoT-enabled devices are smart cars. Spearheaded by Tesla, a lot of companies like Google, Apple, and even Uber want a slice of the pie. Fortunately, more manufacturers benefit us consumers. By 2021, it is estimated that 82 percent of cars will at least be connected to the internet. This would eliminate the need for grabbing a taxi if you don’t feel like driving due to its driverless nature. Whether or not this will actually happen by 2021 still remains to be seen.
The Rise of Smart Appliances
In this context, let’s use a device that are commonly considered as consumer products, and these are arguably the most popular for normal, everyday consumers. Smart home automation such as smart refrigerators and smart thermostats are an example. These are popular because it makes our everyday lives that much easier. Smart refrigerators, for instance, have the ability to tell you when you’re running out of a particular product, such as milk or cheese.
Mind you, these work great, but the set up may take a bit of time. Personal healthcare like the Fitbit and other wearable tech, smart cars, and other consumer electronics. Like virtual reality headsets and televisions with smart TV capabilities are other examples. Products like these fall under the category of Consumer Internet of Things, and it is very easy to see why. Simply put, these are the products that benefit the everyday person, and it doesn’t have a particular specialty market in mind.
As you may have guessed by now, not all IoT tech is aimed at just normal people. Some are specifically made for the business sector.
Internet of Things enabled technology benefit them in less obvious ways. Examples of these would include smart street lights, smart applications that focus on manufacturing and logistics, and other things you may imagine make up a smart city. Because of the nature of the target market, things that fall under this category are called Industrial Internet of Things.
Okay, so now we have a few examples of why you might be interested in it, but what is so special about the things in the context of the Internet of Things? To normal, everyday consumers, these are what is visible. These are the end products that the companies who are involved with the Internet of Things give us, but there are other components to the Internet of Things as well. Earlier we mentioned the endpoints of the Internet of Things devices. These devices have sensors, and basically send data in order to improve performance. What kind of data you ask? Things like movement, temperature, pressure, moisture, and a whole number of things can be measured. The data is then collected and analysed to make future iterations better, as well as to study your behaviours for future use.
The Existence of Cloud
By now we’ve established that the devices are face that consumers are well aware of. Where it does get intriguing though, is when we move from the devices and dive into the other aspects of it. Namely: data, outcomes, applications, and actions. For those of you who are wondering where the data is stored, there exists what we call the Cloud. Think of it like a massive, online storage device where data is safely tucked away for future use. The applications we mentioned before often reside in the cloud and include things like applications for consumers, Internet of Things platforms for business, and other proprietary tools made for business and the like.
Now, save for some very basic Internet of Things applications, the data that is compiled and sent by devices that rely on the Internet of Things aren’t too important on their own. Simply put, alone, they have very little meaning. They do, however, gain meaning in the context of why it is acquired in the first place. The analysis of data, the insights that are generated through said analysis, and the actions which are taken are what make it important. Analysis of data can happen in applications, the cloud, and the data center.
Basically The Internet of Things…
Is a broad term, and we understand it really can be confusing. How it has no definite, one answer for what it actually is only adds to the confusion. There are so many things that play a role in the bigger picture of the Internet of Things that the components are arguably equally important. Context plays a major role here. With things like gateways, protocol, sensors, operating systems of the Internet of Things. Applications, areas of application, and a whole number of other things are all part of the Internet of Things. This truly makes it more confusing, and add to the reason why the Internet of Things is basically an umbrella term. So the next time you get confused about the Internet of Things don’t fret. Just calm down and look at the context being used.