Shh, take a listen. Can you hear the machines talking? Or whispering among another? Of course, you can’t as you’re neither a device nor a machine! We are merely human beings, bound to limitations that prevent us from advancing further especially during revolutionary stages, be it industrial or in life.
However, with the help of the Internet – things could be entirely different. Your home’s air-conditioning or lights switched on with just you uttering a single word, your car analyses the shortest and fastest route to get to your destination, and your Fitbit wearable tells you the overview of your wellbeing by just tracking your heart rate. This is all possible thanks to IoT.
Internet of Things? What’s That?
IoT, or short for “Internet of Things” is the concept of inter-connecting smart devices using the power of Internet such as your vehicles, smartphones, laptops, household machines, smart cities, and even healthcare. And the best part about it? Not only do these devices share information with one another but with the transmitted data, they use them to interact with you daily and even complete your tasks.
According to Gartner that by 2020, you could be living among 26 billion connected devices or some say it could be estimated higher, up to 100 billion! Now that’s a lot of relationships built between people and machines.
But Do We Really Need It?
IoT is instrumental in bringing upon significant improvements in today’s business and economic system by managing internal processes smoothly and providing a high level of convenience that we never thought possible.
To give you a better glimpse of how IoT applications impact us, let us take a deeper look at the following significant benefits:
Pro No.1: Lowers the cost and increase productivity
Seeing as how electronic devices effectively communicate with one another, we now enjoy a significant reduction not only in expenditure but also in conserving energy and cost. We no longer need to fret on issues that arise due to bottlenecks, system breakdowns, and damages.
Pro No. 2: Gives access to high-quality data and information
We are constantly bombarded with endless decisions to make every single day. If we can access better quality data, better decisions can be made and mistakes can be avoided. As many of us know this; “knowledge is power” and gaining more knowledge is always better.
Pro No. 3: Facilitates real-time communication
“Alexa, turn on the lights! Play my favourite tunes!” How can we instruct our devices to do this without IoT? With the right configuration, companies can now omit redundant procedures, streamline operations and inventories, and refine processes. Industries will, in turn, become far more efficient, responsive and even competitive.
Pro No. 4: Reduce human labour via automation
Due to the wireless infrastructure in place that connects devices digitally, IoT applications can carry out your tasks using a shorter amount of time and effort. When the automation happens become precise and repetitive without human intervention- you will experience faster, better quality and timely output.
Nevertheless, You Should Be Careful of its “Cons”
Its enormous possibilities are not without some of its drawbacks. As impressive as IoT can be, we have to be wary of these two major concerns; security and privacy. Companies that are ruthless in generating only profits and have none of your welfare in their minds will willingly sell off your data to other third party organisations. Worst, your devices could have secretly recorded your private conversations!
Also, as more IoT devices get developed, cybercriminal becomes more prevalent among users. Around the clock, numerous are collected and they can be readily available with a minimal effort to retrieve them. We may have indirectly handover hackers and unauthorised users our valuable information and suffer dire, irreversible consequences due to this abuse of control.
So the next time you rely on an IoT-operated device (which is almost all machines now!), just remember to be aware of both the benefits and its repercussions. Nothing will stop this wave from even becoming more integrated into our lives, but it doesn’t hurt to know the risks it contains.
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