The Internet Of Things, IoT in short, has been living up to everyone’s expectation. It is proving to be a game changer for various industries including but not limited to healthcare, automobile, retail, security and housing. From cheap wearable gadgets in health industry to high end cars from Tesla and self-driving cars from google, IoT is surely making waves all across the globe.
IoT is entering markets which were alien to it until very recently. For example, nobody imagined a company like Coca-Cola would dive into IoT hemisphere. With more than 30,000 Coca-Cola Freestyle machines already setup, Coca-Cola is doing its share of innovation. These machines contain many different soda brands and people are free to choose either common soda flavors or can try new blend each time like Diet Raspberry Coke. From the data of current inventory levels to software updates, everything is done over the air using build-in internet connectivity.
This technology is proving to be most effective in healthcare industry. With the entry of over dozen players selling wearable heath tracking devices, it has become easier than ever to track every aspect of health like heart rate, blood pressure, respiration rate etc. that too in real time. From total number of steps taken in a day to total number of hours you slept in deep sleep, people are now able to monitor every reading with utmost accuracy.
Smart Homes Industry
The term IoT may have come in use only recently, but it is already being used from more than a decade now in so called “Smart Homes”. Big builders have been selling smart homes with features like theft detection system and temperature control system. With the current wave of IoT, smart homes are going a step further. For example until now people had the ability to start their air conditioning through smart phone so that when they reach home, it is already comfortable. Now companies are targeting to even automate this step by making your car talk to the home automation system. When the car’s GPS location is within few miles of the house, the air conditioning can start automatically.
In the field of childcare, IoT has brought about a much needed change. With the recent cultural change, most of the children have both working parents which makes it difficult for the parents to monitor their child. Now with wearable gadgets, parents have the power to monitor their kid’s location on a real time basis. There is IoT solutions available in the market which enables you to know when your kid is sleeping and when he/she is awake. This in turn also helps the physicians to monitor the kid’s health and suggest proper care.
Security has been a major concern for most of the people around the world from a long time. Be it security of home, office & car or be it security of files stored on their laptop, security breaches are seen every now and then even now. Companies are now looking at alternative solutions to security issues with the help of IoT. Solutions like biometric scanning is already in active use to control access of people in various restricted areas such as office buildings. Now IoT solutions like automatic unlocking of cars when a person’s smartphone is near and real time tracking of a cabs location have been a common knowledge.
Traffic Management Systems
Various companies and governments all over the world have started using IoT based solutions to solve complex problems like traffic management. For example, smart traffic light is already in pilot stage in Pittsburgh. The solution combines existing technology, sensors and artificial intelligence to reduce the traffic density by a significant margin.
With the advent of the self-driving cars, it seems that the time is not far when all the cars in the cities will be self-driving cars thereby solving multiple problems at once including traffic congestion, traffic accidents, parking problem etc.
Moreover, there are a lot of latest technologies which are giving way to even more advanced IoT solutions. Some of these technologies are
- Wifi- Direct: It is a peer to peer communication protocol which doesn’t even need an access point. It helps build solution which need high speed communication with low latency.
- LTE- Advanced: With LTE-Advanced coming into the market, speeds higher than LTE are now available to be used by mobile networks. As of now this is being actively used in developing vehicle to vehicle communication solutions.
- Low energy Bluetooth: Bluetooth is traditionally known to consume a lot of energy which is a limiting factor for a lot of applications. With low energy Bluetooth devices available which can last very easily up to 1 year on lithium coin cell battery, low energy Bluetooth devices are becoming a big hit in the field of sensors.
- Optical Tags: Optical tags are being actively used in most counties at toll booths to speed up the process of collection of toll. Similarly QR codes based solutions are also being developed very actively.
- RFID: Near field communication devices like RFID and NFC have been in the market for quite some time now and have already existing solutions exploiting them. These technologies are moving strongly in the field of wireless sensors systems.
Overall, IoT has proved that it was not just a fad. It is here to say and is going to change the life of people for good. People are going to be more and more dependent on technology as the solutions become cheap and affordable for common man. The next level of IoT is also not far behind when different devices will be able to talk to each other and with the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms take smart decisions based on real time data. Overall, it can be concluded that IoT is giving a new life to hardware field by connecting various hardware solutions to software solutions. So let’s be a part of this revolution and see how our daily lives improves with each passing day thanks to IoT.