IoT: “What is this Thing?”

An arduino microcontroller, used to describe the Internet of Things industry
Photo by Zan Ilic on Unsplash

What is IoT?

IoT refers to the internet of things, where multiple devices, known as “things” send readings from sensors to industry-specific applications via an IoT gateway. I guarantee that if you are reading this on a device connected to the internet, you have seen IoT in action.

A car’s odometer and surrounding controls, used to describe the Internet of Things’ (IoT) use in the automotive industry.
Just like the picture above, warnings like check engine lights in your car are the results of a sensor’s output to the data bus of your car — a prime example of IoT used in the real world.

IoT for Enterprise

IoT is very popular in the consumer industry, but also for enterprise use — data from sensors is sent directly to an industry-specific software, where it can be analyzed and mined for valuable consumer insights.

IoMT

The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) is changing the way hospitals view patient treatment and is enhancing the quality of care. In IoMT, the main applications are:

  • Medication Inventory Tracking and Automatic Ordering
  • Patient Diagnosis
  • Telemedicine (Doctors can monitor your symptoms from home since the data is transferred through the internet)

Supply Chain and Logistics

It is in the best interest for Logistics companies to track the condition of their products, perform quality checks, and track damages, and IoT is the best way to do so. Ecommerce giants like Amazon use IoT to track the location of your package, and many other purposes:

  • Vehicle Fleet Tracking
  • Automated Shipment Quality Checks
  • External Data Tracking (Temperature, Humidity etc.)
  • Improved Route Finding Systems

IoT for Agriculture

Although IoT can impact almost every industry, agriculture is one of the most apparent ones. With sensors constantly tracking data around the farm and automated systems to regulate them, farmers can focus on more important tasks — removing some of the labour out of a very laborious job.

  • Automated Systems for Regulation of Metrics (Watering Drones)
  • Constant Security around the Field
  • Automated Farming Vehicles (Tractors, Plows, Harvesters)
  • Yield and Harvest Tracking
A picture of a line of cattle, showing the use of IoT to constantly track the health of cattle and plants.
A picture of a line of cattle, showing the use of IoT to constantly track the health of cattle and plants.
IoT in farming is also being used to track the health of cattle for quick treatment after detection.

IoT Mapping

At this point, you have been shown the surface of IoT — now there is experimentation in the field of IoT mapping, where amazing data can be gathered anonymously through mass use of smart sensors.

A leaf being shaded onto a piece of paper, showing the implications of IoT in a global use scenario known as IoT mapping
Context for the analogy that I am trying to illustrate through leaf shading. The more people that use smart devices, the more valuable context we can get from global data trends.

I write about things every week(ish).

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store