How the Internet of Things (IoT) will Affect Our Lives

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What is the Internet of Things (IoT)?

IoT is the amalgamation of artificial intelligence, cloud technology, sensors and analytics allowing us to work and live better. As it permeates our daily lives, nearly every device we own or use will be connected to the internet. With this huge impact, we need to adopt to the up-and-coming transitions and embrace the “new normal.”

Acceleration of IoT

The market for the Internet of Things has seen revolutionary advancements in the fast couple of years. Companies across the spectrum, most notably IoT software, cloud and services companies, far surpassed revenue outlooks. Microsoft Azure grew 76% and Amazon AWS grew 45% in the last quarter of 2018 with their IoT segment contributing considerably to the growth. The number of connected IoT devices used right now is around 7 billion globally, which is expected to increase to 10 billion by 2020 according to research conducted by IoT Analytics.

Concerns Over Individual Privacy

Despite all the benefits and positive expectations, there are concerns that IoT is bound to disrupt the idea of information control that forms an integral part of information privacy. Therefore there is a pressing need for governments and organisations to start the process of improving individuals’ privacy protection and updating current legislation, as the IoT is expected to become the new standard in an Internet-connected digital age.

The Impact On Our Daily Lives

The significant areas being transformed and ones that will be completely modified through IoT at the intersection of people, data and intelligent machines in the near future are:

Connected Homes

House owners using smartphones would be capable of turning on lights, activate dishwashers and washing machines and adjust the air-conditioning temperature at the right time, using IoT. Benefits are manifold like – gas leaks and smoke alerts can be sent to mobile devices, appliances such as washer/dryers can run during non-peak hours of electricity consumption, requirements related to maintenance work can be alerted beforehand averting expensive repairs at the last moment, keeping the house owners informed in the real-time about the security status of their home, home monitoring in remote locations, refrigerators sensing when you are running low on staples such as eggs or milk and automatically populate a grocery list, can all be done using this technology.

From renovators to homeowners, saving money on increasing energy expenditure is also one of the foremost drivers for mass market adoption. Technology giants Google and Amazon are investing heavily in the smarthomes segment. Swedish home furnishings giant IKEA is also ramping up their smarthomes product line.

According to Statista, smarthome market revenue is “expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2019-2023) of 20.7%, resulting in a market volume of US$151,955m by 2023”.

Connected Cars

IoT is breaking new grounds for car manufacturers and also driving the autonomous vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) revolution. With the connected car, the automotive sector has the potential to become a major IoT frontrunner and drive the adoption of IoT cloud services among car owners. Driverless cars utilize IoT connectivity when updating their algorithms based on user data. People on their way to the office or a meeting can get some extra work done during drive-time instead of focusing on driving. Also being connected to other cars on the road will eventually make driving much safer. These measures will not only save time spent waiting around in a queue of traffic but will also bring down the amount of fuel consumed by almost a quarter. Gartner estimates that 250 million connected cars will be on the world’s roads by the year 2020.

Connected Offices

IoT opens the door for new business prospects and will help organizations take advantage of innovative revenue streams created by superior business models and services. IoT driven innovations reduce time to reach the market and augment ROI. IoT is transforming the interaction in both B2B and B2C spaces leveraging increased connectivity and customer experiences. The logistics industry can now deploy IoT sensors on vehicles and packages that can maximize the visibility of supply chains and improve transport operations of valuable cargo. Sensors deployed as part of IoT devices produce data that can be stored and analyzed as part of existing analytics. IoT services integrated with sensors and video cameras help monitor the workplace to ensure equipment safety and protect against physical threats.

Smart Factories

The Industrial Internet of Things is a strategic priority for manufacturing companies as it allows them to give more value to their customers as well as improve cost-efficiency of their internal operations. Using IoT for predictive maintenance can reduce maintenance costs by 30% and breakdowns by 70%. Organizations use connected technology in tandem with cloud-based analytics to drive efficiencies and launch new business models. Airbus has launched a digital manufacturing initiative known as Factory of the Future to streamline operations and bolster production capacity, Gehring Technologies enables its customers to see live data on how Gehring’s machines work before they place an order, and Hitachi has also developed an IoT-enhanced production model that it claims has slashed production lead times by half within its Omika Works division.

IoT-Enabled Healthcare

IoT is unquestionably changing the healthcare industry by redefining the space of devices and people interaction in delivering healthcare solutions. IoT is redefining healthcare by ensuring better care, improved treatment outcomes and reduced costs for patients, and better processes and workflows, improved performance and patient experience for healthcare providers.

The Smarter Future Awaits

From smart homes to smart cities and consumer technology, the world is going to be hit by a huge wave of the IoT revolution.

The IoT raises many complex and potentially ground-breaking opportunities and issues. Simple systems can save huge amount of energy and make everything convenient and economical.

We can barely guess how big the IoT transformation is going to be. In the next decade, it’s totally going to change the way we work and conduct our daily lives.

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