Technology has progressed so rapidly that various devices are able to communicate with each other in complex ways. The diversity of applications, thanks to the Internet, has resulted in all sorts of software, hardware and technology able to handle a variety of tasks – but, additionally, these can work together to accomplish goals you would not be able to using merely singular devices. This is where the concept of the Internet of Things (IoT) comes in.
As one would expect, this means society is seeing increasing disruption in various areas, as people find more efficient ways to use technology.
The IoT obviously focuses on smart devices. What makes the concept remarkable is how it can be seen in action already. As CMO has observed:
“The Internet of Things ... is already here. We drive connected cars, navigate smart TVs, wear FitBits, smart watches and more. But the number of IoT connected devices is expected to more than double in the next five years, making it bigger than the smartphone, tablet and PC markets combined.”
Businesses must be aware of the IoT disruption to the usual ways of operating. Few are reliant on singular devices to achieve particular ends. Phones can inform people about the state of their homes; TVs can show internet videos; watches can receive emails. Importantly, devices can sync – this means, for example, changes you make to a document on your phone are reflected no matter where you then access that same document later. The days of working on a document from one, stationary location are very much a thing of the past.
IoT devices disrupt the industries they’re focused on. As Entrepreneur highlights in their extensive list of Internet of Things examples, the healthcare industry will benefit enormously from wearable devices – able to track people’s heartbeats, heart rate, blood pressure and so on. The data can automatically be uploaded and stored, assisting medical staff when responding to particular patients.
Looking after homes can now be done via single apps: controlling lights, heat, air conditioners, alarms and other connected devices. Homeowners are no longer dependent on people having to intervene, since they’re connected thanks to smart devices, via the Internet of Things.
Marketing, too, will benefit. IoT devices have various applications for business, including creating appropriate products or services for customers, thanks to effective data gathering. As with medical tech, all IoT devices provide avenues to acquire more accurate data that can help business managers make more informed decisions about particular practices.
This should be of particular interest to startups. As we’ve pointed out, startup culture can benefit from the rapid data gathering that is central to the Internet of Things. This only highlights just how meaningful IoT is becoming.
Far from it being some distant concept, the Internet of Things is now reality in homes and businesses everywhere. Considering the possibilities provided by communicating, smart devices, everyone should examine how their world will change – ideally for the better.