When most people hear the term Internet of Things, they usually scratch their heads or shrug their shoulders. That’s because most people have never heard the term, though they do know something about it. They know that they carry around a computer in the pocket that makes phone calls, video conferences with family members, pays their bills, gives them directions and adjusts the thermostat in their house.
What they don’t know is how much more there is to IoT and the impact that it’s about to make in their lives.
Today there are more than 2 billion mobile phones connected to the internet. That’s a lot of computing power out there. And considering the IoT explosion we’re about to experience, we’re going to need them.
According to RS Components, the world as we know will be much more connected by 2020.
In our homes and businesses, there will be 13 billion home appliances and electronics connected to the internet. This includes refrigerators, freezers, televisions, thermostats, security cameras, lights and smoke detectors. Even kettles will be connected so you’ll have hot water for tea waiting for you when you get home.
In our cities, another 9.7 billion devices will be linked into the network, monitoring and controlling street lights, parking meters and traffic lights. In some cities, IoT sensors on water pipes will help prevent another Flint water crisis. Meanwhile pollution monitors will warn residents of ozone and smog alerts when the air becomes unsafe.
Parking will never be easier when smart lots send alerts to your car advising of available parking spots before you even pull into the lot. It’ll be part of the 3.5 billion devices from the auto industry that will help you navigate life and entertain you and your passengers while driving.
On a more serious note, hospitals will see some 646 million IoT uses as heart rate monitors, body implants and blood pressure monitors get connected to give us the most accurate and up-to-date information on our bodies and our health. Sensors will even be put on pill bottles so we get an alert if we miss a dose and the pharmacy can be notified if a refill is required.
And don’t forget 411 million wearables that will drive the fitness industry in the form of glasses, wristbands, watches and athletic shoes, clothing and socks. Warming vests and jackets are already hitting the market, but right now, they’re controlled with a built-in controller. In a few years, you won’t have to use a controller. Sensors will read your body temperature while comparing it to the current weather and adjust the heat accordingly.
There’s no denying that in the next few years, our world is going to get a lot more connected in ways that we can’t even imagine as IoT innovation continues to evolve.