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What is the “Internet of Things?”

The “Internet of Things” is the existence of uniquely identifiable devices interconnected via the Internet. The interconnection of these devices is expected to introduce automation in nearly all fields.

No doubt there is a lot of hype about IoT. We are at the point of wondering what it will mean for us as individuals, employees, and businesses.

IoT will change our lives.

One suggestion is that your toothbrush might have a chip in it, and via Bluetooth, will communicate with your mobile device. It will tell you stuff like how long it has been since you started using it or in the case of the kids’ tooth brushes, have they been used recently. Is that too invasive? We will be faced with all sorts of questions about what we do and don’t want connected to the Internet of Things.

Wearable technology is already beginning to monitor health vitals, which offer things like connected watches that monitor or report on our movements. It won’t be long before your fridge “knows” what is inside it and your rubbish bin “knows” what you threw out. How about the shopping list on your connected fridge door that asks you to confirm the online order for replacing everything you have consumed this week for delivery tomorrow?

IoT will have very practical uses across our infrastructure. Imagine, street and traffic lights will have sensors, so maintenance will know where to replace a burned-out bulb. Pipes will be able to detect where a leak is occurring so that water wastage is reduced. Interestingly today, 30 percent of our water supply is currently lost due to leaks. The infrastructure cost savings with this type of technology, smart-pipes, will equate to savings billions of dollars.

There are plenty more examples of this type of sensor information making big differences. When this is tied to big data and data analytics, the world will change quickly and significantly. The impact, on businesses that must reduce wastage to remain competitive, will be huge.

IoT will affect your business, so be prepared.

Some technology is here today, but much of it is currently in development. Large companies have embarked on ambitious big data projects and many smaller organizations alike have started collecting and collating what data they can too. Therefore, this is leading to a growing need for data storage systems and analytics tools today.

Likewise, if your business is not paying attention to the current changes in IoT technology while looking at what it means to your industry then, you’ll let behind. It doesn’t matter whether you are in retail sales, manufacturing or consulting services, there are changes coming to technology in the IoT that will change the way your industry thinks and works. You don’t want to be the only farmer who still waters the whole crop because you don’t have sensors telling you which third of the crop is dry.

We will post more updates on how The Internet of Things is affecting local businesses, but in the meantime stay alert, not alarmed, at the IoT changes in your industry.

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