What is IoT?




from What is IoT?
by IoT Now Magazine
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The phrase ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) is officially everywhere. It constantly shows up in my Google news feed, the weekend tech supplements are waxing lyrical about it and the volume of marketing emails I receive advertising ‘smart, connected devices’ designed by famous brands who have now joined forces with my local Internet Service Provider (ISP), has just become silly. So what actually is this ‘IoT’? asks Jodi Thurtell, marketing manager with WKM Global, a specialist agency focused on the IoT and hi-tech sectors.

So, let’s get down to it, what is IoT?

Simply put, IoT is about connecting machines or, as we refer to them, ‘things’ that were previously ‘dumb objects’, (think everything from your toaster to a security camera), to the internet in order to transmit the data they collect, monitor them and enable them to ‘talk to each other’.

Every aspect of our lives is soon to be affected. We will experience an unprecedented step-change, on every level – from the way we run our homes and businesses, to how we interact with the cities we live in.

Imagine driving to work on roads embedded with sensors – streetlights turn on as and when needed whilst cameras placed along your route monitor for congestion and incidents, which your connected car receives in real time, and adjusts its self-driving route accordingly whilst you sit back and simply enjoy the automated ride.

A couple of hours into your day, your connected workspace notices that you’ve been sitting for too long and reminds you to get up and move around, which is a good thing because you’re watching your steps carefully through your smart watch and so is your healthcare insurance provider in order to adjust your premiums based on your level of activity.

Whilst on your walk, you realise that you haven’t heard from your elderly mum, so you give her a call but she’s not answering her mobile. No problem, it takes just a sec to check in on her via a connected ‘caregiver’ – the wearable tech that monitors her movements, heart rate and reminds her to take her medication.

Then, it’s not too long until it’s time to head home but the thought of cooking leaves you cold – you could be doing something else like taking a virtual reality (VR) yoga class. So, you leave it up to the connected scale on your kitchen counter top, your smart fridge and intelligent oven to do the chore for you.

Finally, your bed is calling – no, literally! Its sensors have calculated the hours of sleep you missed last week and has set the perfect temperature to ensure you don’t wake up in the night from feeling too hot or too cold, it’s monitoring the position you achieve deep-sleep best in and predicting a personalised optimum time for lights-out which your smart home responds to.

See, IoT has your back. It’s helpful, its perceptive and it’s quick … but how? Let’s break it down.

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