Today, we will comprehensively take a look at the impact of IoT and its applications in different aspects of the real-world industry, as well as its positive implications in the daily lives of people, especially those who are willing to embrace technology.
IoT in a Nutshell
Simply put, the concept of the Internet of Things or IoT emanates from the need to universally stay connected facilitated by technology and devices. You can look at it as a giant web of connections over a network, connecting people to everything around them and, in the process, streamlining the day-to-day activities.
The data and information that is fed into the devices are collected and shared with IoT platforms or cloud repositories for the purpose of further analyzing and using them in a way to generate valuable insights for optimization or coming up with data-based solutions.
Devices could mean anything from a wearable fitness device to large-scale renewable energy equipment such as solar panels, wind turbines, hydro turbines, etc. These devices are connected to an IoT platform, which reads the data extracted from the devices’ built-in sensors and analyzes as seen fit to come up with the best actionable information.
IoT platforms are very powerful in the sense that they adopt multi-layer technology to connect a range of diverse hardware to the cloud through the means of flexible connections and enormous data processing powers, along with enterprise-grade mechanisms. The platform has the capability and functionality to speed up the whole process and ensure compatibility and scalability during the application development process for the connected devices. It can filter useful data through pattern identification, predict and diagnose errors and faults in the system, and make relevant knowledge-based recommendations according to specific needs.
Check out this video on IoT technology explained in detail by Intellipaat:
IoT—Hype and Reality
With enterprises realizing the versatility and never-ending potential of the growing global network and the industrial IoT applications, their appetite for heightening efficiency and streamlining existing operations is increasing exponentially of late. A study by Vodafone reveals that the large-scale IoT projects that have been deployed worldwide have doubled in numbers over the period of a year. However, this increasing hype for IoT can make organizations jump on the IoT bandwagon in a haste and could sometimes end up being over-implemented.
To successfully implement IoT in an organization, it requires a complete understanding of its end-goals in the process followed by the critical decision to choose the suitable IoT connectivity, devices, and the type of data that needs to be shared. Many enterprises do not prioritize connectivity, and the haste to deploy IoT solutions can result in unnecessary expense. Organizations should therefore consult service providers before making any decisions and consider the long-term feasibility of the technology rather than succumbing to the hype.
It is imperative that businesses understand the importance of strategy and execution of the IoT elements to create a more tangible and long-term option and ROI. Especially, with the saturation in the IoT applications in business operations, it has become even more critical to make intelligent decisions.
Take a quick look at the IoT courses offered by Intellipaat.
Top 10 Real-world Applications of IoT
Now that we have covered some important aspects of IoT adoption and deployment, let’s get down to understanding all the ways in which IoT can be implemented across various industry verticals and other examples of IoT applications in daily life.
IoT Applications in Agriculture
Quite evidently, judging from various studies, the need for food will tremendously increase by the year 2050. It is not only essential to invest in agriculture smartly but also to do it in smart agriculture, i.e., farmers should be able to make use of smart devices and sensors to deduce current situations and make informed decisions going forward. IoT-integrated agricultural technology has the potential to improve and increase crop yields with better quality and lower costs by cutting down on the use of fertilizers and pesticides.
Typical applications of IoT in the agricultural sector may include livestock monitoring, spraying crops, precision farming, irrigation management, farm surveillance with drones, field mapping, etc. IoT can facilitate the gathering of data about weather, soil moisture and chemical composition, environmental conditions, other local agricultural conditions, etc. without the need for heavy expenses. IoT integration can also help by providing insights into long-range transmissions, energy consumption, and monitoring multiple assets through better per-acre coverage. The deployment of IoT becomes quite simple, and the cost of ownership reduces.
IoT Applications in Healthcare
In light of the 2020 pandemic, the implementation of IoT in the healthcare sector has been more promising than in the past. Digital health solutions have been observed to be on a surge for COVID-19-related healthcare, some specific demands being digital diagnostics, online health consultations (telehealth consultations), remote monitoring, robot assistance, etc.
The uses of IoT in healthcare incorporates device monitoring, patient monitoring, medical team coordination, and workflow optimization, as well as out-patient-related solutions such as elderly care, assisted living, pain medication management, and many others.
IoT Applications in Logistics
The complexity in supply chains is undeniably high, especially when it is concerned with delivering goods with intricate flow and operations to the end customers. These challenges and complexities faced by logistic providers are being tackled with digital solutions integrated with IoT technology for operational efficiencies. IoT in logistics can include projects such as inventory management, storage management, condition monitoring (medicines, medical supplies, cold chain, etc.) and asset tracking, automated guided vehicles, team coordination, and more.
The necessity for IoT tracking has been even more highlighted across supply chains due to the difficult situation during this pandemic. Essential medical equipment and PPE kits were running low worldwide as the global supply chains came to a sudden halt or faced disruption. This expedited the need for IoT-driven solutions in the sector, allowing companies to oversee all operations more efficiently.
IoT Applications in Biometrics
IoT safeguards the integrity of data shared over a network, which has made it indispensable for organizations to help protect valuable information from being compromised in the hands of malicious hackers. Biometrics has been deployed for securing information by means of fingerprint sensors, ID access, smartcards, etc. Successful integration of biometrics and IoT technology is vital to have preventive measures in place.
IoT Applications in Retail
Innovation has driven the retail industry to new heights more than ever, especially in the age of e-commerce. Digitizing and changing the way sales take place has introduced cost-efficient solutions, as well as helped greatly improve customer experience. This has been achieved through smart operations such as customer engagement, efficient tracking, goods monitoring, smart vending machines, in-store digital signage, inventory management, etc. These IoT-driven operations have led to retailers being able to account for a higher percentage of identified sales and projects.
IoT Applications in Construction Industry
Using digital solutions with IoT technology in construction has applications in safety, decision-making, servicing of equipment, operations, preventive maintenance, etc. Sensors on work clothes, hardhats, and wearables can greatly keep a check on hazardous situations on construction sites. Monitoring and alert systems can make workers aware of unsafe zones on the sites. Real-time reporting is possible through sensors, surveillance cameras, drones, etc.
The data collected from devices can allow well-informed decisions and necessary adjustments to be made. Usage levels of various equipment can also be monitored and tracked, along with keeping a tab on construction materials, making it very convenient to handle operations on site.
IoT Applications in Tourism and Travel
IoT is more widespread in the tourism and travel industry. Nowadays, high-end hotels have introduced mobile keys. Hotel guests can simply wave their mobile app to unlock the door to their rooms once they are notified that their room is ready. There is no waiting involved, which makes the whole process very smooth for the guests as soon as they arrive.
Data can be collected from each room through a unique digital identity, and rooms can be booked, reviewed, and rated. Each guest’s preferences can be tracked for a very personalized experience during their stay by analyzing the regulated temperatures, light levels, minibar items, music recommendations, favorite TV channels, and many more. Similar technology can also be used in airports and on flights, streamlining the customer experience. The travel industry also makes use of IoT to notify tourists of local attractions or bus timings. Innovation is limitless!
IoT Applications in Transportation
Transportation was observed to be the second most popular application of IoT this year—starting with connected and smart cars with over-the-air software update capabilities and extending to fleet management solutions. Another application is in telematics. Vehicle monitoring and diagnostics can be done by connecting to the car’s local operating system. IoT makes it possible to monitor tire pressures and battery life, along with driver monitoring and vehicle tracking. Major car manufacturing players have started integrating similar IoT technologies.
IoT Application in Manufacturing
Large automation companies and tech giants are the driving forces of the manufacturing industry, adopting digital transformations. The sector covers an extensive range of IoT devices and automation projects such as smart factory solutions incorporating production wearables, floor monitoring, automated quality control systems, remote PLC control, AR, etc.
Outside the factory, IoT facilitates remote control and management of complete industrial operations, PLC, connected machinery, etc., which in turn cuts down on downtime and costs.
IoT Applications in Smart Cities
IoT applications in smart homes and cities are becoming more and more pronounced worldwide with Singapore, Zurich, and Oslo being the 3 leading smartest cities, as mentioned by the IMD Smart City Index 2019. Geneva, Copenhagen, Auckland, Taipei, Helsinki, Bilbao, and Dusseldorf are the other cities, which have implemented this technology.
A typical smart city will include smart traffic management, smart parking, smart waste management, smart lighting, video surveillance for public safety, environmental monitoring for air pollution, and other kinds. There is no lack of potential in smart city projects, but these projects tend to have long tender timelines and take a long time to start; not to mention, the political affairs of the city can become a huge setback from time to time.
Is IoT still one of the trending technologies? Check out in our blog on Trending technologies.
The latest analysis by the IoT Analytics’ research indicates that the manufacturing sector currently has the most uses in IoT, followed by transportation, retail, healthcare, and energy industries. With the perpetual evolution of technology, it should come as no surprise if the future scope of IoT across diverse industry verticals become more common than a luxury.
For further queries on IoT, visit the IoT Community at Intellipaat.