The way we work and live today has been influenced by technological advances and interconnectivity that has been carried out, specifically in the last decade.
The internet of things (IoT) is one of the advances that has raised countless debates and questions due to its potential effect on how it has and could continue to impact the way in which human beings – and objects-, live, work and relate to each other. The IoT has proven to be able to contribute to the reduction of waste – in industry, for example – and the improvement in the productivity of things, people and even cities due to the numerous opportunities it offers and the mentality that “ Everything can be connected. ”
But what exactly is the internet of things?
The internet of things is the ability that has been given to the millions of devices around the world to connect to the Wi-Fi network, and through this, perform what we assign them and then control what we do. This has allowed adding a level of digital intelligence to simple products and covers everything from TVs, kitchen appliances (toasters, coffee makers …), speakers, cars, lights, motors, bells, cameras, and virtually everything with a button of ‘On / Off’.
There are many reasons why people want to have so many devices connected and talking to each other. Consider, for example, that your alarm clock is connected to the coffee maker, and every morning it sends a signal to the coffee maker to prepare the coffee along with the alarm clock. Or to control all the lighting and sound of your home from the place you want through a Tablet. Or turn the lights on and off with a slap or a “hey Google: turn off the lights.” Or that technological accessory is constantly monitoring your physical activity and health levels, such as heart rate and reminding you to drink water. Or that your car or cell phone can notify you in advance of a crash or road closure on your frequent routes. Or that aircraft engines can transmit information to ensure they are working to their potential. Or that sensor contributes to energy savings in cities. Very convenient. Do not?
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An analysis of the North American professional services company Gartner estimates that by 2020, there will be more than 26 billion connected devices – an approximate of three devices per inhabitant of the planet.
However, privacy and security is one of the most sensitive issues when talking about the internet of things, since these devices and sensors have access and collect countless information – from what you do in your day to day (time to wake up, route, schedule, visits, among others), to what one says in their homes and meetings. This issue has become a topic of debate between citizens and businesses, due in part to the increasing number of cyberattacks, tracking and identity theft. Despite this, there has been no slowdown in the growth of such technology. In contrast, according to a ComScore publication in the Business Insider magazine in 2018, the adoption of IoT in the North American market grew 54% from December 2017 to February 2018.
IoT is expected to have a significant effect on a wide variety of activities and businesses including agriculture, manufacturing, transportation, defence, logistics, banks, hospitality, health, among others. Among the benefits of the most pronounced IoT for companies would be greater access to data on their customers and internal system, and then a better and more accurate ability to improve their products and services.
On the other hand, among the companies that have granted greater monetary investment and time to this type of technology are Microsoft, Amazon, Google, IBM, Verizon, Garmin among others.