Take a look around you. Whether you’re in the comfort of your own home or in a public place, chances are you can spot some “smart” devices. As most of you tech savvy individuals know (I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt here), smart in this context refers to devices that have the capability of going online. But don’t get too comfortable with what you refer to as smart because the technological world as you know it is changing. Let’s just hope you can keep up!
Understanding The Internet of Things
To fully understand this technological advancement, you’ll want to be familiar with “The Internet of Things” (IoT). In broad terms, this means connecting devices with an on and off switch to the internet or even to each other. This includes common devices such as smartphones (e.g. iPhones) and tablets (e.g. iPads), to household appliances from coffeemakers to washing machines. One analyst firm based out of Connecticut estimates that there will be over 26 billion connected devices by the year 2020. That’s nearly three times the current population of the world - isn’t that crazy? It’s almost as if technology is invading this place we call home.
Data Creation In The IoT Network
As more devices join the IoT network, there will be an increase in the amount of data being created. With a whole lot of data being created on a yearly basis (2.6 quintillion bytes to be exact for you computer geeks), 90% of all the data in the world has been created in the past two years. This abundance of available data is known as Big Data (who would’ve guessed?) and businesses utilize this consumer information to optimize performance, or so they say to make you less suspicious.
Looking At The Pros & Cons
So what exactly are the pros and cons of IoT, you may ask? Well, in the business sector, companies can use this data for better marketing and brand-building potential. Between you and me, this is just a fancy way of saying that companies will have more information on you and ways to interfere in your daily life. While this is a pro for companies, it vey well could be a con for all consumers. After all, what happened to that little thing called privacy? Even when you think what you’re doing is off the radar, you can never be too sure because someone or something is always watching. The list of cons doesn’t even stop here. With IoT, companies will have even greater competition because they are no longer concentrated on just selling the product, but also the service. And, yes, this does affect you as a consumer too – lucky you. This means that companies can increase the prices on their products because they won’t just be products anymore.
That about sums up the whole IoT phenomena. Now it’s up to you what you want to do: join the revolution or go against it?