The Internet of Things (and What You Need to Know)

Luke JohnsonApps, Technology

Internet of Things and What You Need to Know - VOiD Applications
The practical definition of the Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects which can be accessed through the Internet. These objects contain various technology which is embedded within them, this allows interaction that can cross between the external and internal environment. These interactions which allow communication will help change how and where decisions are made, and the ability to make those decisions more efficiently.
Internet of Things and What You Need to Know - VOiD Applications

With IoT there is a potential to connect 10x as many sensors to the Internet than currently by 2020, this may range from fashion accessories to enabling cars. Applications such as the many found on production lines can increase efficiency and cut down on the amount of wastage. There’s been a high increase in US manufacturers who are using data sent from smart sensors and have reaped in the benefits based on recent studies.

“Everything that is able to connect to the internet, carries the potential of being hacked, meaning incredibly well-organised firewalls and proxies will need to be in place.”

Earlier positive use of IoT can be shown, for instance, the company UPS had placed GPS devices in its delivery vehicles in 2008. Since then they’ve been able to develop an On-Road Integrated Optimization and Navigation System (ORION), this can identify the shortest and most fuel-efficient routes from utilising info carried by sensors across the country, this allowed them to save around 1.5 million gallons of fuel.

Possible Security Concerns?

Everything that is able to connect to the internet, carries the potential of being hacked, meaning incredibly well-organised firewalls and proxies will need to be in place.

As possible attacks through the IoT are likely, measures of prevention are being curated, for example; Segmenting your networks which is something done usually by the Router provided by your ISP, which means creating two different networks in your home.

Internet of Things and What You Need to Know - VOiD ApplicationsAnother issue would be over surveillance’ (Big Brother always watching etc), and as such is, a cause for concern. Deeming where to draw the line before it becomes an invasion of privacy whilst trying to make the best and most secure product is always going to have a conflict of influence from multiple parties. If every product becomes connected, then there’s a matter of a corporations’ rampant observation of its users.

As possible attacks through the IoT are likely, measures of prevention are being curated, for example; Segmenting your networks which is something done usually by the Router provided by your ISP, which means creating two different networks in your home. By doing this you can separate your IoT devices away from your personal computers and mobile devices that also run the household network.

This may help limit the exposure if you are comprised through an IoT device, but added preventions on IoT and clear cut descriptions of why and how it affects the public will need to be in place and become common knowledge in order for consumers to feel as though they ‘trust’ this new level of interconnected advancements.

Practicality of IoT

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As a more local example of this technology, Birmingham Airport uses IoT to monitor queues and keep passengers happy – The system works by deploying a mixture of Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connected sensors to detect mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Once detected, these devices provide information such as travel times, dwell times and passenger movement patterns. The queue measurement system is also used to help airports comply with service-level agreements.

These aren’t the only technological advancements being made in the West Midlands region, as many other businesses seek to strive off of the technological infrastructure here in the region, so can you! If you haven’t already seen our ‘Beef Monitor’ project, this makes use of the very tech magic described above. If you have any queries or wonder how IoT can be linked to your businesses’ services and technology, then contact us today.