Everything these days can be done at the click of a button or the sound of your voice. It’s crazy to think that 20 years ago people were only dreaming about having the convenience we experience today. You could say that we have become more dependent on technology because life has become more fast-paced and societies norms have changed. Humans are creatures of habit and evolution and adaptation is inevitable. You can choose to ignore it but take a moment to think about a world without the internet? Sending a letter would take days and you would have to leave the office to visit clients. All these factors form part of “the internet of things”. Join us on the journey as we explore the impact of technology. Feel free to share your comments at the end of the article and join the conversation.

What is the internet of the things (IoT)? Based on a combination of definitions, the internet of things is a device or product that can be turned off and on that is connected to the internet in order transfer data to assist in the action that needs to take place. This can include monitoring or manual tasks such as automated lighting. Keith D. Foote from dataversity.net describes it perfectly when he says:

Simply stated, the Internet of Things consists of any device with an on/off switch connected to the Internet. This includes almost anything you can think of, ranging from cellphones to building maintenance to the jet engine of an airplane. Medical devices, such as a heart monitor implant or a biochip transponder in a farm animal, can transfer data over a network and are members the IoT. If it has an off/on switch, then it can, theoretically, be part of the system.

Techcrunch.com breaks down the concept even further by saying: ”Today, the term commonly is used to signify advanced connectivity devices, systems and services that go beyond machine-to-machine communications, and covers a variety of protocols, domains, and applications.” Now that you know what it is, you can see the impact this concept has on our ability to maximize efficiency not only at work but in our personal lives as well.

Global tech giant Google is one the best examples that everyone can relate to. Ask anyone around you something simple that they would not know the answer to, you’ll see them take out their cellphones and Google the answer. Google Maps and GPS technology has been the catalyst for business opportunities such as Uber and other businesses were connecting to the network maps is crucial to their operations. Going somewhere and don’t have a means of transport, what do you do? You Uber or Taxify – this is the internet of things in a practical form.

We could ramble on and give you hundreds of examples, but that would be a bore. Before we leave you to go on your own journey of exploration, we’d like to show you a few examples of the impact of technology and how having technology at our fingertips affects us.

Imagine never running out of milk again, you can take it a step further, imagine never having to deal with sour milk again. A simple task has evolved from milking a cow, to the milk delivery man to letting technology simplify your life and take one more task off your to-do list. Check out this example from the Huffington Post:

“There is a phenomenon of sensors in IoT that is gaining mileage of late. Let’s take it from a relatable scenario, a family of six in Belgium – they have an internet enabled refrigerator which has sensors that take account of everything in there from fruits, refreshments, cake, and milk etc. Since milk is one of the most used items for their breakfast cereal, when the milk reaches low levels, a refrigerator using a database to understand the demographics of the household, it knows that there are six people who are about to go dry.

Then it automatically connects to Walmart.com to place an order for a 12 pack of milk, including any other thing that is running out of in the refrigerator.”

Drawing closer to home. MobeeWash – the App that cleans your ride is the perfect example of innovation. “MobeeWash was born out of a desire to offer a convenient, professional and classy vehicle clean! But more than that, Sean O’Connell (Founder at MobeeWash) saw an opportunity to create a mechanism that would offer opportunities to budding entrepreneurs and the ranks of unemployed across South Africa.” Get your car washed while you are work, gym or at home. All you need to do is request a car wash via the app, just like Uber. Having personally used this service, we suggest you try this to see the IoT in action.

To end off we’d like to leave you with a thought from scientist and futurist Michio Kaku who discussed what the world would look like in 20 years from now. Here are some of his predictions that will impact business and investment decisions globally.

“Artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, and biotechnology are going to be central themes in the next wave of science and wealth creation. Our lives will be complemented by a combination of virtual and augmented reality.”

Extra reading:

“IoT is one of the hottest tech tickets right now, and the current developments may eventually change our world in ways that even the most seasoned experts can’t yet predict. We are on the cusp of a monumental new wave of disruption across a vast number of industries, with many of the world’s greatest innovators working on concepts that are likely to reshape our society profoundly. Do you think today’s children will one day learn to drive as their parents did? Probably not. Will the majority of today’s jobs be significantly different, or non-existent, in the next ten years? Most definitely.” Igor Ilunin, head of IoT at DataArt. https://hackernoon.com/the-internet-of-things-science-fiction-or-fact-d10fcdfa5cea

“Seventy-three percent of executives said they are either researching or currently deploying IoT. And a majority of business leaders surveyed by The Economist’s Intelligence Unit (55 percent) expect IoT technologies to help them make internal cost savings and/or generate external revenue in the next three years.” https://www.networkworld.com/article/3230554/internet-of-things/what-you-need-when-the-big-breakout-for-the-internet-of-things-arrives.html