When searching for great content to share on FACE and Pulsar’s social channels, I stumble upon the ‘Internet of Things’ most days. But, it’s a subject that is yet to feature on this blog. And I don’t know why that is – the potential for it to change all our lives is vast.
The Internet of Things is an umbrella term used to describe internet-connected devices, from furniture to coffee-machines, light switches to dishwashers. The concept is that these everyday “objects” will be in constant chatter with larger computer systems and one another in order to make our lives easier.
Imagine this – in the morning your activity wristband will notify your Nespresso that you have woken. By the time you reach the kitchen a grande cappuccino with a sprinkling of cinnamon is waiting for you. Sounds perfect, right?
My aim here is to provide you with five top reads that explain what we can expect from the future of inter-connected devices
Stephen Pritchard, Guardian
“The idea of capturing data during a sporting event is not new but the richness of the data now available and the speed at which it is gathered certainly is.”
In this first article Stephen Pritchard discusses how the Internet of Things is changing the sporting landscape: from coaching and spectating to post-game and real-time analysis. The introduction of “smart buildings” means that sensors in an athlete’s shoe, boot or clothing can link up to the stadium’s WiFi network – allowing teams to monitor players whilst in action. Not only this, but allow building software to monitor stadium activity
Sportswear brands such as Adidas and Nike are already exploring opportunities here, such as the Adidas ‘Smart Ball’ and miCoach software for football performance analytics. Brands investing in sports sponsorship may want to consider how they can use sensor data to give fans an exclusive, immersive view of the game.
If we draw our eyes away from the pitch and to closer horizons, what happens to the data (and there will be a lot of it)? This is exactly what the author of our next article, Patrick McFadin, asks:
Patrick McFadin, Wired
“As Internet of Things projects go from concepts to reality, one of the biggest challenges is how the data created by devices will flow through the system. How many devices will be creating information? How will they send that information back? Will you be capturing that data in real time, or in batches? What role will analytics play in future?”
A technical read on how data flows through IOT systems, with particular focus on the importance of capturing accurate time-series data in order to produce useful, actionable analytics results.
Heather Clancy, Fortune
“Close to 25 billion sensors could be sharing data wirelessly by 2020, attached to everything from LED lights to cars to industrial equipment to doorbells.”
If the Internet of Things catches on, there will be nothing small about its operations. Heather Clancy notes that in 5 years time the world could play host to 25 billion talking sensors. Yet how are businesses using this technology to better their efficiency and profits right now? Clancy highlights the philosophy that less-is-more by stating it should not be the Internet of Everything, but rather deliberately chosen objects. From implementing this strategy, businesses Deloitte, Verizon and GE are already increasing their profits by driving real revenue.
In our next article Victor White asks what marketing professionals should do to stay ahead of the IoT curve:
Victor White, Betanews
“By tying all of the data points generated from connected devices back to a user’s identity, businesses will be able to create truly personalized and lifestyle-based experiences for individual consumers.”
For businesses using data from connected devices, identifying its origins and the individual owner of the device is key to creating one-to-one experiences. White argues that without identity the Internet of Things is just noise and completely redundant.
Stephen Balkam, the Guardian
“If we can resolve the privacy, security and trust issues that both AI and the IoT present, we might make an evolutionary leap of historic proportions”
This article, which articulates the bigger picture of inter-connected AI and the Internet of Things, may not be relevant to businesses right now, but it’s something we should pay attention to nonetheless. Stephen Balkam of the Family Online Safety Institute believes once we’ve solved the issues of trust, privacy and security, then we are in the midst of a breakthrough in technology and consciousness.
That’s the latest from the Internet of Things from me, Ed Hawes. Join us in a fortnight for another five reads from another sector – share your suggestions with me over at @FaceResearch.