The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of devices all around that world that are connected to the internet and to each other. So while we commonly think of IoT as something distant, you almost inevitably come in contact with it everyday. If you want to dive a bit deeper into how it all works, here’s a whole piece breaking down what IoT is.
IoT Interactions in an Ordinary Day
To help show a few internet of things examples, we’ll walk through a hypothetical day in the life of Rebecca.
Interaction #1: Smart Home Lock
Rebecca leaves her home every morning at 8:30am to commute to her job. When Rebecca gets in her car to leave for work, she can’t remember if she locked her front door or not. She pulls up an app on her phone that tells her she did indeed forget to lock the door. And from that same app, she’s able to lock it.
Interaction #2: Car Alert
On the way to work, her check engine light turns on. Understandably she’s frustrated about that, but later she notices an email from her car manufacturer. It sends her a list of dealerships and mechanics nearby who have the car part she needs, along with available appointment times.
Interaction #3: Smart watch
A few hours into her work day, Rebecca gets a ping from her smartwatch that she typically has been more active by that time of day. It recommends a 5-minute walk to catch up. This gets her to take the stairs a few minutes later when she goes out for lunch.
Interaction #4: Smart Thermostat
Later, when she gets home, she notices that it’s become quite a cold day and started to rain. And yet, when she walks in the front door, her house is at a comfortable temperature because her smart thermostat has already adjusted accordingly.
The Most Important Factors of a Functioning IoT Solution
It’s not hard to understand why connectivity is so crucial to each and every IoT solution. They all rely on a fast, reliable connection to the internet. Timeliness is one of the reasons IoT solutions serve our needs and impress us while doing so. If an internet connection lags or drops, then IoT solutions quickly become much less impressive, and in some cases, useless. Check out the IoT connectivity that we offer at SIMON IoT.
IoT devices are constantly pulling information. A smart watch is capturing your heart rate and steps, your smart thermostat is tracking your home’s temperature, etc. Once they have that info, devices send the info to a central location, often referred to as an IoT platform.
These platforms’ ability to collect information, typically hosted by the cloud, is key to all the useful functions of IoT solutions. Data is organized and shifted at this platform, guiding your device’s reaction to the information it’s received. When your thermostat finds out that your house is 78℉, it sends that info to this platform. The platform is programmed to know that you don’t like your home that hot. So, it tells the thermostat that turning on the air conditioning is the appropriate response.
This relates back to the first factor of connectivity. Without an internet connection, these “conversations” can’t happen between your IoT devices and their platforms. And without that connection, there is really no internet of things.
IoT sensors exist to collect all the information we were just discussing. A smart watch would just be a watch if it couldn’t collect info like your heart rate, location, and all that good stuff. The thermostat’s sensor is the piece of the puzzle that would detect that your house is 78℉.
At the End of the Day
The importance of IoT has quite a spectrum, from keeping your home your ideal temperature to quickly sending for first responders in an emergency. We’ve covered some of the ways an average person interacts with IoT. But we didn’t even scratch the surface of all the ways it affects manufacturing, healthcare, or retail. IoT often makes your life easier and in ways you might not even notice.
Find out more about how we at SIMON IoT offer the connectivity that make these solutions possible.