When laying eyes upon the 21st
century and realizing the main drivers behind it, soon it would be comprehended
that technology is deeply embedded within the very structures that govern our
lives with millions of devices interconnected around the globe forming what is
called the “Internet of Things”.
This has ultimately gained the reputation of being
translated into a topic of interest at workplaces and within the general
public. It’s a fairly new concept that one might ponder over and question what
is this “Internet of Things” and “how would this exactly impact our lives?
Let’s take a peek into what IoT actually is,
but before that, we need to understand a few things.
Now more than ever, broadband internet has
extended its reaches and made available to almost everyone, which means the
cost of connecting is relatively lower, which in-turn results in an increase in
devices that are manufactured with the capability of connecting to the internet
and inserting sensors into them, technological advancements have augmented with
lower implementation costs and smartphones penetration is on an exponential
rise. Zooming out to the comprehend the situation, all of this put together is
creating the “perfect storm” for the IoT. Below is a short video published by
Cisco providing insightful information on the IoT.
1. What is the “Internet of Things”?
In really simple terms, IoT refers to the concept of objects,
devices, coffee machines or anything that you could think of to be connected to
the internet with few technical steps and inserting ubiquitous sensors into the
object. This process has transitioned from the theoretical stage to
implementation, which enables Machine to Machine communication (M2M) with other
millions of machines and objects to the current internet infrastructure.
The analyst firm, Gartner, has reported that by 2020 there
would be over 25 billion connected devices and some have even estimated this
number to be way over 100 billion, now such a speculation isn’t just mind
blowing but rather it tempts our imagination to ponder over the possibilities
forming today and what can be done with those. The IoT is a massive network of
connected device of “things” (also includes people). The relationship would be
between people to people, people to things, and things to things.
this influence our lives?
Ultimately, these inserted sensors would give the object a unique
identity and location through an Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6). Scientists
are digging deep for ways to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the
IoT, implementing it to in ways to reduce traffic, pollution, time and
eventually creating a smart city – where every object is monitored for a better
tomorrow. For example, sensors that can monitor heart rates and blood pressure
and could instantly notify nearby hospitals in situations of emergency or
waking up at 5 am and your coffee maker instantly starts brewing the coffee
etc. These possibilities are real and scientists are on the verge of turning
all that into actual reality.
Consequently, the IoT would be applied on a much larger scale
to reform cities like on transportation infrastructures to reduce traffic or
new ways to improve energy consumption levels.
This notion has every capability of fundamentally changing
the dimensions of how we lead our lives today.
3. Does UAE
really plan to make Dubai the world’s smartest city via implementation of IoT?
UAE has its vision set on making Dubai be the world’s
smartest city in the world by 2017 and the initiative was taken by DU and
announced back in 2014. Here what the smart city project looks like:
This implementation of the new network will be a key element
in the smart city project and will empower smarter management techniques in a wide
array of resources.
"The telecom firm will roll out the first phase of
revolutionary IoT network in Dubai by the first quarter of 2016 and complete
the countrywide project by year-end," Carlos Domingo, senior executive
officer, New Businesses and Innovation, du, told Khaleej Times.
A report published by the GCC has predicted that the smart
cities market would increase from $400 billion to anywhere about $1.5 Trillion
or more by 2020. This is a moment where history would be made for UAE and a defining
moment in the city’s transformation and new groundbreaking development. For the
deployment of such level, Dubai will need millions of sensors that would relay
information over long distances requiring low power consumption, which can make
it cost and energy efficient. Such state of the art IoT technology would offer
endless opportunities and pave out a way for new businesses in the future.
All we can do right now is educate ourselves and indulge in conversations
regarding the IoT, we need to learn the kind of possibilities that would
eventually become a reality. In addition, there are always trade-offs, so this
might mean that with state of the art technology at our disposal it would mean increased
risks and exposures to technical malfunctions or external threats from
cybercriminals infiltrating networks etc., so for now, let’s just focus on the
potential impacts and implications that come with the IoT, in simple terms be
ready to step into the digital age.
Hassan Aladawy. email@example.com
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