IoT – Internet of Things

What is it and what is it for?

The IoT – Internet of Things, refers to devices connected at the internet which allow the transfer of data and information. The term, Internet of Things, was coined by Kevin Ashton in 1999, and it was the title of one of his presentation at the P&G.

The devices connected to the internet has two main characteristics: monitoring and controlling. The device could act as a sensor by providing information on long distance regarding itself or the surrounding environment or it can be controlled remotely.

This innovative technology is new for the most of the people, but it was present from many years, and today is used in a lot of areas.

Who use it?

According to Gartner, today the objects connected are almost 5 billion and will be 25 million by 2020.

Further, according to the report “The Internet of Things: The Future of Consumer Adoption”, 30% of consumers already own a device that is part of the “Internet of things”, such as: a thermostat, a web cam, a moisture detector, or a watch or a connected bracelet- those are known as “wearable IoT”.

The world of IoT has developed three level of growth:

Consolidated applications, in which all the devices that we frequently used are part of it; the most interesting areas are those of the Smart Home and Smart Manufacturing.

The other two are:

Experimental and embryonic applications. As an example, the solutions based on the RFId technologies (Radio Frequency Identification) will be one of the major factors of success and development of every enterprise involved in the production and distribution goods’ process. Moreover, in the area of E-Health (IoT for health and medicine) this technology will be largely used for the monitoring of the patients.

Experimental application will be used also in other areas of interest such as:

Smart City

Smart Mobility    

Smart Agriculture

Public administration

IoT  is a technology which will be used for simple solutions, for the users/common consumers, but most importantly for important perspectives in term of revisiting the enterprises’ information and management systems. The aim is to reduce the waste and to raise the productivity.

Advantages:

According to Will Frank, founder of Ubiquisys ( one of the first enterprise in the IoT business, today a Cisco’s property), the connected objects will optimize the production processes and the economics activities leading to the reduction of the pollution and the consumption of resources. As an example the management of the  electricity by the new technology will reduce the consumption of electrical energy; and the management of the irrigation system by the IoT will reduce the waste of water.

Risks:

The risks involve the protection of the privacy and of personal data. The risk is that all these connected objects, which can gather a huge amount of information and upload them on the net, could allow the others to monitor our habits and use our data for illegal purposes.

What is missing, especially in Italy, is an ad hoc law which provides the ownership of the information collected by the IoT and their transfer on the net.

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