Internet of Things (IoT)

Introduction: With the recent developments in Information and Communication Technology (ICT), small and smart devices (smart phones, smart watch, tablets, laptop, GPS, various sensors etc.) penetrate into people’s daily life to enhance the quality of life by reducing hard work. One can handle multiple tasks at a time from remote places, such as, controlling home security, performing house chores etc. without being physically present there with the help of ICT. Now we will know about such world agitating technology termed as, ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT).Broadband Internet has become more widely available, the connecting-cost is decreasing, more devices are being created with Wi-Fi capabilities and sensors are built-in among them, technology costs are going down, and smart phone penetration is sky-rocketing. All of these things are creating a perfect storm for the IoT. The IoT is the most wanted technology of the present time. According to forecast, worldwide spending on the IoT will reach $772.5 billion in 2019; an increase of 14.6% over $674 billion spent in 2018.Latest update to the International Data Corporation (IDC) records ‘Worldwide Semi-annual Internet of Things Spending Guide’ forecasts worldwide IoT spending to sustain a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.4% through the 2017-2021 forecast period surpassing the $1 trillion mark in 2020 and reaching $1.1 trillion in 2021.

Definition: The Internet of Things or IoT refers to the billions of physical devices around the world that are now connected to the internet, collecting and sharing data, embedded with electronics, Internet connectivity, and other forms of hardware (such as sensors), these devices can communicate and interact with others over the Internet, and they can be remotely monitored and controlled.

History: The term “Internet of things” was likely to be coined by Kevin Ashton, Procter & Gamble, later MIT’s Auto-ID Centre, in 1999. A research article mentioning the Internet of Things was submitted to the conference for Nordic Researchers in Norway, in June 2002. Defining the Internet of things as “simply the point in time when more ‘things or objects’ were connected to the Internet than people.” Cisco Systems estimated that the IoT was “born” between 2008 and 2009.

Brief Description: IoT is an intelligent technology which includes identification, sensing and intelligence. Life and even intelligence of life itself can also be regarded as part of IoT. It is used in pattern identification fields like measurement and computing as well as computer and communication fields like sensing, communication, information collection and processing. It involves management of accession of cloud computing customization application by users of IoT, computing and processing what is involved in customization service; organizing and coordinating service nodes in the data centre (Data canters are simply centralized locations where computing and networking equipment is concentrated for the purpose of collecting, storing, processing, distributing or allowing access to large amounts of data). Ubiquitous network includes 3G, LTE, GSM, WLAN, WPAN, Wi-Max, RFID, Zigbee, NFC, Bluetooth and other wireless communication protocol technology. It also includes optical cable and other wire communication protocol and technology.

Applications: Smart Home has become the revolutionary ladder of success in the residential spaces and it is predicted that Smart Homes will become as common as smart phones with IoT.

Wearable have experienced an explosive demand in markets all over the world. Companies like Google, Samsung have invested heavily in building such devices. Wearable devices are installed with sensors and software which collect data and information about the users. This data is later pre-processed to extract essential insights about users. These devices broadly cover fitness, health and entertainment requirements. The pre-requisite from IoT technology for wearable applications is to be highly energy efficient or ultra-low power and small sized. A connected car is a vehicle which is able to optimize its own operation, maintenance as well as comfort of passengers using on-board sensors and internet connectivity. Most large auto makers as well as some brave start-ups are working on connected car solutions. Major brands like Tesla, BMW, Apple, and Google are working in bringing the next revolution in automobiles.

Smart city is another powerful application of IoT generating curiosity among world’s population. Smart surveillance, automated transportation, smarter energy management systems, water distribution, urban security and environmental monitoring all are examples of internet of things applications for smart cities. Connected healthcare yet remains the sleeping giant of the IoT applications. The concept of connected healthcare system and smart medical devices bears enormous potential not just for companies, but also for the well-being of people in general.

Conclusion: The future of IoT is more fascinating than this where billions of things will be talking to each other and human intervention will become least. IoT will bring macro shift in the way we live and work. I hope you had fun reading about all these powerful and promising applications of IoT. There are many more areas where IoT is making an impact. Networked Toys is one application of IoT which will change the playing experience of your kids. IoT can also be used in the detection of environmental issues. I hope this will trigger the interest of the readers enormously.

  • Khondokar Oliullah
  • Honours
  • IIT, Jahangir Nagar University

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