It’s started already. The internet is working its way into our life more and more. It’s connecting our phones, computers, kitchen appliances and our stores to one another. You can control your thermostat remotely, or stream TV shows from the internet onto you TV, or monitor your security system. But that’s just the start.
Bottom line, sensors placed in devices compile data and send it over the internet where it is turned into meaningful information. The implications for businesses, non-profits, and government can help them become more efficient and reduce costs. We are seeing:
- A farmer easily monitor hundreds of cows to make sure they are healthy while he sits at a computer.
- Doctors remotely tracking patients with heart conditions.
- Street lighting adapting automatically based on weather reports
- Delivery vehicles being rerouted because of accidents up ahead.
- Smart grids automatically turning down certain household appliances during peak usage periods when brownouts may occur. Or just automatically change when it senses no one is home.
- A waste management company was able to reduce residential waste by 17% and increase recycling by 49% due in part to monitors tracking usage.
- Water systems in cities such as Beijing have reduced leaks by 40-50% thanks to sensors placed on many pumps in their infrastructure.
And guess what? That’s still just the start. In just a few years, some people expect more “smart devices” to be in use than smartphones, tablets and computers combined.