Many people are still confused about what an IoT or "smart" device actually is and what it does. If you think about the current state of affairs regarding technology and information, you probably have similar thoughts. It seems like every time something new comes out, people want to know everything about it and the best way to do that is by studying it and then trying it for themselves. In a way, this is what the IoT project is all about: collecting, managing and then sharing information about the world around us.
So what is the IoT and how does it affect me? Basically, an IoT refers to any type of smart devices that act like a computer that collects, processes and then distributes that information to various industry grade iot ecosystems (computation centers, servers and other devices). The most important thing about an IoT is that it will allow users to leverage all types of IoT ecosystem. Industry grade iot ecosystems will allow people to access information and control their devices with software and web services. For example, the healthcare industry will greatly benefit from using smart devices like digital X-Ray machines. Hospital personnel will be able to diagnose problems more efficiently and reduce the chances of errors when treating patients.
By using industry grade iot networks, internet-connected devices will be able to send and receive data from all over the globe, including Google and Amazon. Those sensors will be connected to a central computer, where software will read the data, process it and send it back to the user's smartphone or tablet in real time. This will make it possible for someone to check a room temperature in their home even if they are on the go.
Since there will be so many smart devices running on the IoT, each one will require its own "line of sight" from which to communicate and process data. To solve this problem, the IoT software will also need to be able to act as a portable gateway between the various iot devices. With a cohesive infrastructure, all these components can connect to each other, to the central server (running software), and to third-party web services, such as Zuul, that will allow them to send and receive real time data. The benefits of this approach include:
No matter what type of device is being analyzed, it will be able to use the standard protocols and standard algorithms to process the data. This will enable the IoT to have a very well-maintained and standardized system for communication. Because the iot ecosystem will be able to form a standard connection for sensors across different groups, all devices will be able to work together and stay current with the latest developments and standards. Standardization also makes it easier for consumers to interact with their devices.
Consumers will be able to control their own devices with the iot ecosystem because they can access and update all their information at any time from any place. They will no longer have to carry their smartphone everywhere they go, but can instead access and look up information from their laptops or desktops wherever they are. Standardization will also make it much easier for developers to create new applications that will take advantage of the available data storage and processing power on the IoT devices. For example, by using the same standards, smartphone and computer developers will be able to write new apps for users that will take advantage of the sensor data storage on their devices to deliver personalized and tailored experiences.
The IoT will continue to advance and develop in new directions. In particular, the IoT Foundation has been working closely with several key cloud computing companies to pave the way for a truly smarter mobile and internet environment on the IoT. Amazon has already demonstrated an interest in this area, and Google is looking at ways to bring mobile connectivity to the IoT through the implementation of Google's Project Arak. Samsung has also expressed some interest, and other major players including Microsoft have also shown some interest. These players are looking to put the power of the internet in the hands of consumers and to enable them to interact with their devices in new ways.
Consumer adoption will depend largely on the speed and magnitude of the improvements that the IoT ecosystem produces. Significant gains will be seen in areas such as data compression, battery life, and connectivity. More widespread adoption will also lead to new approaches in the design of the devices themselves and the collection, organization, and sharing of user data. Such changes may also impact the cost structure of the device and its role in the overall architecture of the IoT network.