How to recognize the IoT as it rolls into 2021
By Marc Kavinsky, Editor at IoT Business News.
Rather than blockchain usurping the world, it seems that the IoT is going to give blockchain its consolation prize. Along with distributed ledger technology in play at various levels and in various applications, the unfolding IoT has other regular friends and emerging stars. Edge computing and 5G tech are two important development areas right now – significant components of the IoT that they are – but a host of realities beyond them are also going to find development and prominence as the IoT continues apace.
It’s perhaps fitting that the IoT is primarily manifesting in the world of commerce and industry. Business is always hungry for efficiency, productivity, and a reduced wage bill. Those with the capital to outlay are automating as far as possible and employing Business Intelligence or IoT-As-A-Service (IAAS) providers to manage the ensemble. A surprising number of smaller manufacturing concerns are also implementing IoT solutions, initial outlay notwithstanding. If ever there was a time to have a trusted IT company on board, this is it. Hardware is stealing software’s thunder, and the cloud sees all.
Business will streamline the IoT into efficient and practical functionality before it’s passed onto consumers to change their homes – and worldview – in short order. Already we’re on the right rung of the ladder. Wearable devices and 5G alone have already shifted the consciousness of older consumers. For the younger ones, it’s just the way things are, the world they’re growing up in. Data latency is disappearing as edge computing and 5G particularly enable a different, more accurate experience of data as a whole. The promises of the Noughties around data lake supremacy were empty, but they’re going to come home with the IoT.
For decades, business has been collecting data and, although it was voluminous, it was also – in many instances – too much for anyone to mine effectively. AI is changing that, although AI is largely dependent on the data we’ve assembled to instruct it – and the majority of that data is dark. The IoT is introducing billions of qualification points to that reality, and so the quality of data will become far better and – in a feedback loop – so will AI. Rather than big corporates sitting on top of a mountain of data, now millions of organizations can have a synchronized hardware fraternity – the IoT’s devices – collating data in a far more accurate and qualified manner. Gone are the old lakes of potential – enter the IoT – and a new, incredibly detailed yet thoroughly sorted data collection is being made possible.
Big data redefined
The International Data Corporation has postulated that there will be over 40 billion IoT devices by 2025, and they’ll generate just under 80 zettabytes of data. Now that is big data. The IoT doesn’t come without challenges, however. A great many commercial entities are jumping onto...