What is IoT?
Internet of Things (IoT) refers to a system of interrelated and internet connected objects that facilitates collection and transfer of data using embedded sensors. The data is collected and exchanged in real time without the intervention of human. Thermostats, cars, lights, refrigerators, and more appliances can all be connected to the IoT. Now seamless communication is possible between people, processes, and things with the use of IoT. In today’s hyper connected world, digital systems can record, monitor, and adjust each interaction between connected things. The physical world meets the digital world and they work with each other. A study says there will be more than 64 Billion IoT devices installed around the world by 2026.
Everyday objects become “smart” with the help of IoT. They transmit data and automate tasks, without any manual intervention. An IoT device could be something as simple as a health tracking wearable, or as complex as a smart city with sensors across all its regions. One of the most prominent examples of IoT would be the “Smart Home”, that allows you to control everything in your home. This can control from your thermostat to your lighting to even the surround sound. In simple words, any object that can be connected to the internet and controlled that way is a candidate for an IoT device.
What are the most used Internet of Things examples on day to day life?
- Connected appliances
Mobile phone, Laptop and Tablet are connected to each other via cloud computing. You can access the information on your Laptop even when you are away from home
- Smart home security systems
IoT connects a variety of sensors, alarms, cameras and microphones to provide 24/7/365 security. Everything can be controlled from a smart phone. For example, the Ring doorbell camera security system allows users to see, hear, and speak to visitors at their door via a computer, tablet, or mobile phone.
- Wearable health monitors
Fitness trackers help you to track your heart rate, blood pressure, water consumption, sleeping pattern and much more.
- Smart farming
Farmers can use IoT-enabled tools to monitor weather, soil composition, soil moisture levels, crop health and growth, and livestock activity. The data can also be analyzed to determine the best time to harvest plants and create fertilizer profiles and schedules. Drones can also be used to collect photos and atmospheric data.
- Wireless inventory trackers
- Ultra high speed wireless internet
- Biometric cyber security scanners
- Shipping containers and logistics tracking
What is industrial IoT?
Under Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Sensors, instruments, and other devices are interconnected in a network together with computers’ industrial applications. This connectivity allows data collection and exchange, data analysis, facilitating improvements in productivity and efficiency and etc. This process is an evolution of a distributed control system (DCS) that allows for a higher degree of automation by using cloud computing to refine and optimize the process controls. IIoT is sometimes called the fourth wave of the industrial revolution, or Industry 4.0. The following are some common uses for IIoT:
- Smart manufacturing
- Smart power grids
- Smart cities
- Connected logistics
- Smart digital supply chains
Here are some advantages of IoT:
- Easy Access
Now it’s easier to access necessary information in real time from anywhere we are located in. All what we need is a smart device and internet connection. With the use of IoT we can easily access data and information from our location, in real time. This makes it very convenient for people to go about their work, even if they are not physically present.
Tracking a route with the help of Google Maps, booking a movie ticket or a flight ticket anything can be done at your fingertips in just one click.
- Better Time Management
IoT is an incredible time-saving tool. Starting from google maps to online purchasing, anything can be done at a fraction of second. Instead of going to a shop and buying someone a gift, we can purchase an item in an online shop and deliver to them to their door step. Eventually, we end up with much more time on our hands.
With the help of IoT and Smart offices, repetitive tasks can be automated. Now the employees can invest their time and effort into something more challenging and learn something new.
IoT facilitates communication between devices. Due to this, the physical devices are able to stay connected to each other and therefore total transparency is available with lesser inefficiencies and greater quality.
- Automation and Control
Due to physical objects getting connected and controlled digitally and centrally with wireless infrastructure, there is a large amount of automation and control in the workings. Without human intervention, the machines are able to communicate with each other leading to faster and timely output.
IoT helps us to monitor things happening around us. For example a smart home can monitor your home even when you are away, switch off lights automatically when no one is in a room thus saving money on energy bills. It can even track the usage of grocery and expiration of products leading to an improved safety for our health and save time.
- Better Quality of Life
All the application of this technology aids in increased comfort, convenience and better management thereby improving the quality of life.
Here are some disadvantages of IoT:
The IoT is a diverse and complex network. Any failure or bugs in the software or hardware will have serious consequences. Even power failure can cause a lot of inconvenience.
The risk of losing privacy increases with the data and information being transferred in IoT. As all of the household appliances are connected to the Internet, the information is prone to attack by hackers. It would be very disastrous if private and confidential information is accessed by unauthorized intruders.
Imagine if a notorious hacker changes your prescription. Or if a store automatically ships you an equivalent product that you are allergic to, or a flavor that you do not like, or a product that is already expired. As a result, safety is ultimately in the hands of the consumer to verify any and all automation.
- Lesser Employment of Menial Staff
Since IoT is ruling the world by automating daily activities, the unskilled workers and helpers may end up losing their jobs. The day to day requirements of human resources tend to decrease with daily activities getting automated. This can lead to unemployment issues in the society.
- Technology Takes Control of Life
Our lives will be increasingly controlled by technology, and will be dependent on it. The younger generation is already addicted to technology for every little thing. We have to decide how much of our daily lives are we willing to mechanize and be controlled by technology.