IoT or “Internet of Things”
is a system of interrelated devices that communicate and share data and information. Data is collected and forwarded via a network, usually the Internet, to a smart device or server that can then use this data. These IoT devices currently number in excess of 25 billion and expect
to hit 50 billion by 2030.
Typical IoT devices include anything that collects data and needs to report this data. There are many examples such as
– Weather stations
– Wearable device
– Smarthome systems
– Inventory trackers and logistic management products
– Automotive smart enabled products
– Security and surveillance products and systems
– Utility monitoring water/gas/electricity
This list is very extensive.
Currently, there is no definitive standard around IoT. If not properly designed and thought through there could be privacy issues not foreseen. Data security is also an important component not all networks are secure and if the data has a sensitive nature it should be encoded. They are also often complex devices.
IoT devices can use a variety of communication networks, Bluetooth, BLE, WiFi, wired internet, GSM, LTE Cat 0,1,2, NB-IoT, Zigbee, Z-Wave. Often a combination of several to get the data packets to their destination.
Connectivity can be costly correctly evaluating your data needs can have a significant impact on the monthly costs of being connected. High speed high bandwidth products needing MBytes of data will be costly. Small devices sending low data amounts can be run for only a few cents a month. Selection of the
correct communication protocol and network is a critical part of the design process.
Almost anything can be connected, if you or your client will benefit by being able to monitor your product then consider getting connected, before you competitor beats you to it.