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Trending Topic: Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things (IoT) isn’t just about the communication between your fridge and your stove. Anyone who owns a smartwatch or tracking bracelet – otherwise known as “wearables” – is part of this phenomenon. In industry, the IoT allows for stronger and smarter connections to take place. Confused? We will give you a better understanding of the Internet of Things.

How it works

The main idea behind the IoT is for objects to update their status automatically and exchange information among themselves via the internet. Each device is provided with its own network connection and IP address and equipped with processors, sensors and network technology. These sensors connect the real world to the digital world by measuring everything from location and temperature to movement and brightness of its surroundings.

If a user sends a request for information to an IoT device via a terminal device (smartphone, PC, tablet) data is then gathered and made available by IoT sensors. Users can then react and adapt the properties of the IoT device to the situation. Data can be stored in the cloud, a local database, in a terminal device or on the IoT device itself. Cloud storage has the advantage of easy data exchange between administrative service and devices.

The goal of this intelligent connection is to simplify daily (working) routines, but the real potential lies in complete automatization: connected devices can take over daily tasks not just partially but completely.

Smart home vs. industry 4.0

“Smart home” refers to the connection between all technical devices within a household. Through the central control of all household devices, energy can be used more efficiently and the quality of living can be increased.

In industry 4.0, machines are equipped with modern communication and information technology, creating smart and connected factories where complete production plants can communicate via M2M (Machine-to-Machine Communication). Different processes can then be finished economically and efficiently. At the moment, companies use IoT to optimize production and distribution, but in the near future completely new products, solutions and services are possible.

IoT and safety

In recent debates, data security of the IoT is questioned since increasing connections also increase security risks. On the one hand, this technology interferes with highly sensible areas such as power supplies. On the other hand, IoT devices sometimes have minimal safety precautions which force companies to adapt to new security requirements. Right now, there is no reliable method for evaluating an IoT device’s security, which makes it hard to check the data protection.

Even still, the topic of IoT is definitely worth keeping in mind. Though it’s not fully developed and still needs legal regulations, there is a huge potential for the conflux of the digital and physical world. Will it be a blessing or a curse – what do you think?

Source: 1&1 blog

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