IoT – What is this Hype All About?

What-is-this-Hype-All-About

The Internet of things is physical objects embedded with sensors, data processing abilities, and software that exchanges data with other devices over the Internet.

IoT is everywhere now, in the workplaces, schools, and homes. According to Statista, the IoT market is expected to reach 1.1 trillion US Dollars by 2028. It is used in numerous sectors like smart homes, education, healthcare, financial services, and more. According to statistics, 86% of healthcare organizations were using IoT in some way in 2019.

In this blog, we will be discussing what is IoT, its application in different sectors, security concerns related to IoT, its future, and if IoT is really worth the hype?

So let’s dive into it!

Brief History Of IoT

The term ‘Internet of Things’ has been going around for almost 16 years, though the basic idea can be dated back to the 1970s. The term Internet of Things was coined by Kevin Ashton in 1999 during his presentation for a new sensor project at Procter & Gamble.

While the term was coined in 1999, the first IoT device was actually created in the early 1980s at Carnegie Mellon University. A group of students from the university created a way to get their campus Coca-Cola vending machine to report on its contents through a network in order to save them the trek if the machine wasn’t working or out of coke.

The concept of IoT started to gain popularity by 2010, with Gartner including it in the list of emerging technologies in 2011. In October 2013, IDC published a report stating the Internet of Things would be an $8.9 trillion market in 2020. In 2014, the term Internet of Things reached mass-market awareness after Google’s announcement to buy Nest for $3.2 billion. Today there are more than 27 billion devices connected to the Internet of Things, with the numbers expected to rise to over 50 billion devices by 2030.

What Does The Term Mean?

Internet of Things, or IoT, is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, and objects that are provided with unique identifiers (UIDs) and have the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring any human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. IoT systems use embedded systems, such as processors, sensors, and communication hardware, to collect and send data they acquire from the environment.

According to the current statistics on IoT devices by Forbes, the number of cellular IoT connections is expected to reach $3.5 billion in 2023, with Asia leading the charge

IoT Platforms

The basic function of IoT is to connect devices remotely for seamless functioning and ease of operations. An IoT platform is a software suite or cloud service that manages various types of endpoints and provides web-scale infrastructure capabilities to support basic or advanced IoT solutions and digital business operations. Some of the popular IoT platforms are:

  1. Google Internet of Things
  2. Amazon Web Services IoT
  3. Microsoft Azure Internet of Things
  4. Arduino Internet of Things

Architecture Of Internet Of Things

IoT systems work on a four-stage process that explains the flow of data from sensors to the cloud or corporate data centers. This process is known as the architecture of the Internet of Things. The four stages are:
Sensors-  Sensors are the drives that monitor the thing and capture data regarding the status of the process.
Data Acquisition-  The data acquisition system collects raw data from the sensors and converts it from analog into digital format.
Pre-processing-  In this stage, the data needs further reduction before being sent to the cloud. The edge device (the device that provides an entry point in a service provider’s core network) performs analytics as part of the pre-processing.
In-depth Analysis On The Cloud-  The data can be analyzed, managed, and securely stored in the last stage.

Software And Hardware Components

IoT is a rapidly growing industry as, according to Forbes, smart factories are predicted to be worth more than $500 billion in 2022. There are two primary components of the Internet of Things: Hardware and Software, with hardware accounting for 35% of IoT’s market value.

Hardware

IoT Hardware consists of numerous devices for routing, bridges, and sensors. These devices perform different functions such as system activation, security, action, specifications, communication, and detection of support-specific goals. Here is a list of IoT Hardware.

  1. Building Blocks Of IoT Hardware
  2. IoT Sensors
  3. Wearable Electronic Devices
  4. Basic Devices

Building Blocks Of IoT Hardware:

The building blocks of IoT hardware are the data acquisition module, data processing module, and communication module. These are the hardware components that contain all of the sensors, perform computing operations like analytics and storage of data, and enable communication with your cloud platforms.

IoT Sensors:

IoT sensors are one of the most critical components of IoT Hardware. These devices contain numerous modules such as energy modules, RF modules, power management modules, and sensing modules.

Wearable Electronic Devices

Wearable electronic devices are small devices that can be worn on different parts of the body, such as the neck, arm, head, torso, and more. Current smart wearable devices include helmets, glasses, collars, wristwatches, wristbands, rings, clothing pieces, and more.

Basic Devices

Devices such as desktops, cellphones, and tablets also remain an essential part of the IoT system. These devices provide users with a high level of control over the system and its key features.

Software

The IoT Software consists of numerous common programming languages trusted and used by the developers. Here is a list of software, frameworks, and programming languages of the Internet of Things:

  1. C Programming Language
  2. JAVA
  3. Python
  4. Swift

C Programming Language:

The C programming language is popular for Linux OS and Arduino embedded IoT software systems. It is hardware-oriented, making it an easy voice for IoT. It is a popular choice among IoT developers due to features like interoperability, rich libraries, portability, and its compatibility with micro-controllers which are integral peripheral devices of IoT architecture.

JAVA:

JAVA is an incredible and recognized programming language popular among IoT programmers because of its portability. Another reason JAVA is prominent is because of its Code Once Run Anywhere functionality which enables developers to code their app once and run it on any platform compatible with it.

Python

Python is an interpreted language that offers seamless code readability and simple syntax features, which makes it compatible with structured, object-oriented, and functional programming. Python is the perfect choice for IoT apps that require extensive data analysis and storage.

Swift

Swift is another programming language that was specifically designed to develop IoT applications for iOS devices. This programming language is fast, secure, and offers dozens of programming patterns. If you’re thinking of creating an IoT app that revolves around iOS devices, Swift is the ideal choice for you.

Application Of IoT In Different Industries

According to statistics, 83% of organizations have improved their efficiency by introducing IoT technology. Here is a list of applications of IoT in different industries.

Healthcare

IoT has helped the healthcare sector become more efficient and robust by introducing numerous IoT products. The global internet of medical things (IoMT) is expected to grow to a $158 billion valuation in 2022. IoT devices enable doctors and medical professionals to monitor patients and take better care of them. IoT devices can now automatically monitor health metrics from patients who are not present in the healthcare centers physically. Some of the IoT healthcare devices and healthcare IoT companies are:

  1. Apple watch
  2. AliveCor
  3. NeuroTech
  4. Clover Health
  5. Babylon Health

Education

IoT has become a game-changer for the education sector. The adaptation of digital tools in the educational sector has allowed students to be more creative and inclusive, with most schools adopting new methods of live video calls and pre-recorded lectures to teach students. The implementation of IoT products in schools has improved resource management, global interconnectedness, testing efficiency, and more. Some of the popular IoT products used in the learning sector are:

  1. EdMo
  2. C-Pen
  3. LocoRobo
  4. Kajeet

Restaurants

Although IoT isn’t as heavily used in restaurants as in some of the other sectors, it is slowly gaining momentum. IoT is helping restaurants gain more and more customers as statistics have revealed that placing an order on a tablet boosts appetizers sales by 20% and dessert sales by 30%. Here is a list of some of the IoT products that are currently being used by restaurants

  1. Amazon smart oven
  2. Samsung’s smart refrigerator
  3. Presto
  4. SalesVu
  5. Ziosk

Concerns In Terms Of Privacy And Security

IoT has taken the world by storm and is quickly integrating itself into everyone’s lifestyle. But with the rise of IoT devices, there has also been a rise in security challenges faced by using IoT products. Here is a list of security problems when using IoT.

Insufficient Physical Protection

A concern that is not mainly focused on but can pose a severe threat is insufficient physical protection. IoT hardware is not protected. If an attacker has physical access to the device, they can attack the hardware, which can result in them reading the memory components and bypassing software.

Intrusion Ignorance

Most devices do not come with logging in or alerting functionality to notify the user of any security problems. The result is that users barely detect if their device has been hacked and compromised, which prevents them from taking security measures.

Insufficient Privacy Protection

Another safety concern when using IoT is insufficient privacy protection. IoT products usually store sensitive data which can be hacked at any time. Such as, cameras can provide video and audio recordings of the house in which they are deployed. This information can result in severe privacy violations if leaked.

Future Of IoT

IoT is on a roll, with reports from Statista stating that it will likely connect about 50 million devices by the end of 2030. As numbers have already proven, the future of IoT is promising. IoT will be integrated deeply into every part of our lives, from smart homes to smart cities. Within the next two years, our homes will likely be stocked with multiple IoT products such as smart glass, lightning control tier air pressure detection, smart eye, pulse oximeter, smart framing, service bots, niche bots, and home bots. Even though this looks like a distant future, companies like Amazon, Apple, Samsung, and Google are currently in the process of developing these technologies. These IoT gadgets will turn our homes into smart homes.

Smart cities aren’t some far-fetched fantasy either, as reports suggest that 66% of the US cities are investing in smart city technologies while half of the ongoing smart city projects in Europe are already developed. In smart cities, IoT technology will determine roads that need to be reconstructed, the extent of their degradation, and extreme temperatures that may cause damage. IoT devices will also be managing traffic and residential security because a smart city is a safe city.

Our Experience With IoT

Our company, Gentech Solutions, has worked with numerous clients over the years and has helped them create innovative and satisfactory IoT products over the years. We have created IoT apps, telegram bots, home monitoring apps, backend systems, and more. You can view our case studies to find out more about the projects we have done over the years.

We can help you explore the potential of IoT for your existing business or a new entrepreneurial venture.

Conclusion

So this is it! We hope you enjoyed this article and it was helpful to you. Feel free to contact us if you have any queries.

Minahil Aijaz

I am a medical student and an avid fiction reader, with a penchant for travelling. I am currently working as a junior content writer at Genetech Solutions, one of Pakistan’s leading Software houses.

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