Today there are more things connected to the Internet than there are people in the world. In the not so distant future, everything we can imagine will be connected to each other and to YOU…the REVOLUTION will be televised…or watched online.
Imagine a refrigerator that alerts you to replenish on basics based on your dietary requirements. The same refrigerator letting you know that all is not lost as it has trolled the internet to find a recipe made up of ingredients that you have.
How about a toaster that lets you know what the weather forecast will be for the day…right there on your slice of toast. Hard to imagine, start imagining all kinds of possibilities because the above examples already have prototypes available.
How does it work?
Sensors >Connectivity >People and processes
Sensors: We are giving our world a nervous system. Location based data using GPS locators, eyes and ears using cameras and microphones, along with sensory organs that can measure everything from temperature to pressure changes.
Connectivity: These inputs are digitized & placed onto networks
People & processes: These networks are then combined into bio-directional systems that integrate data, people and systems to assist in better decision making.
The interaction between these entities creates new types of smart applications and services. Starting with popular connected devices already on the market such as activity trackers, car satellite navigation systems, smart thermostat, parking sensors etc.
The most popular categories
The current category leaders are fitness bands and wearable technology made famous by Samsung.
Retailers in the US & UK have started using beacon that help retailers communicate with shoppers In-store. Customers are alerted as soon as you walk into the store if an item they searched for on the web is indeed available in that particular store and in their size. Virgin Atlantic tested the Apple iBeacon at the Heathrow airport, for passengers heading towards the security checkpoint, their phone would automatically pull up a mobile boarding pass ready for inspection.
More aerial drones are being used in South Africa and around the world, the first pilot was done by the Oppikoppi music festival. The Oppikoppi beer drone, was an 8-propeller helicopter that can be loaded with beer and flown over the festival, arriving at the GPS location of the person that ordered a cold brew from a mobile app.
Most recently a local company has built a drone designed to shower pepper spray on unruly crowds and says it has begun supplying units to an international mining company. Current aviation rules in South Africa prevent the drones being deployed but we hope that the legislation will be changed.
The Internet gave us an opportunity to connect in ways we never thoughts possible. The internet of Everything will take us beyond connection to become part of a living, moving global nervous system. The possibilities are endless.
By Jeanette Moseneke