Defining IoT – Various Approaches

Internet of Things (IoT) is the latest technology buzzword that everyone keeps talking about.

The term is overused over the past few years in ways that prevent people from actually understanding the full potential of this breakthrough technology. And even with all that hype around IoT, 87% of the people still don’t know the meaning of the phrase ‘’internet of things’’, according to the IoT infographic put together by the editorial team at SafeAtLast.

Let’s try to break down the main characteristics of IoT and take a look at what aspects all of these IoT definitions have in common.

IoT Connectivity

All IoT definitions include the network and the connectivity aspect: an interconnected system of appliances, sensors, devices, assets, and/or things, depending on the source. It’s pretty evident that the element of connectedness and networks is present in any decent information. IoT connectivity is enabled via several wireless standards and protocols, both fixed and wireless. More often than not, it’s a combination of both.

Connectivity occurs on all levels: between devices (at a very close range), between devices and the cloud (further away), and at very large distances. There are various connectivity standards, depending on the amount of power that is required and the volume of IoT data transmitted, and it all adds up to a wide range of existing standards and solutions.

IoT ‘’Things’’

IoT-enabled devices, sensors, assets, physical objects, any piece of electronic equipment that can connect to the internet, endpoints, appliances, the list goes on.

These are all terms that people use to describe the key ingredient in the IoT ecosystem. Some people describe these devices as ‘’intelligent’’ or ‘’smart’’. For example, these devices can contain technology that grants them the capability of performing additional tasks: capturing location data, measuring moisture levels or temperature, or detecting any form of action that can be transcripted into data.

IoT devices need to be managed and that’s where IoT remote control kicks in: in enables configuration, onboarding, and overall management of IoT devices. This type of management can be done using proprietary vendor solutions or cloud platforms. Device management is one of the key components of such a platform.

Other components of an IoT platform include access control, IoT data management, and application enablement.

Top Five IoT Statistics

  • 26.66 billion IoT devices in 2019 were active.
  • By 2025 there will be 75 Billion IoT devices in the World.
  • 127 new devices are connected every second to the internet.
  • By 2020, 40% of IoT devices will be used in the healthcare industry.
  • The global IoT market will grow up to $457 Billion by 2020.

Connectivity between devices is the start while connected data is where the value starts.

IoT Communication

Harnessing data is maybe not without value, but it sure is meaningless unless it is used for a purpose and turned into intelligence, insights, and actions.

Maybe you’ve heard about the DIKW hierarchy from data to information to knowledge to wisdom – and action? Well, that can be applied for IoT hierarchy as well. The data senses and acquired by IoT devices need to be transmitted (communicated) so it can be turned into actionable information, let alone insights, knowledge, actions, or wisdom.

IoT Automation

There is always a degree of automation regardless of the type of IoT application and the scope of the project.

n fact, most IoT solutions are essentially all about automation, and that often comes with challenges and benefits. Business process automation, industrial automation, or the automatic updating of software: it all plays a significant role, depending on the context.

 IoT Automation is also what powers Tesla cars, and soon autonomous vehicles whereby upgrades, maintenance and so forth are all about software and automation, powered by data which is harnessed by connected devices and sensors.