The Internet of Things (IoT) is a collection of internet-connected devices. At first, the Internet was simply a network of interconnected computers. But as the Internet grew, telephones, office equipment such as printers and scanners, and industrial machines were added to the Internet. Today, just about any device that we use at home, in the office, in the factory or that we simply wear on our bodies can go online and be connected, hence the internet or "things".
IoT is a trend that is driving the digitization of society in many new ways. Self-driving cars, autonomous production robots and remote-controlled medical devices are all possible thanks to these networks of connected things. In fact, Ericsson predicts that by 2022 there will be approximately 29 billion devices connected to the internet worldwide. In this article, we'll discuss the top five drivers and innovations in IoT in 2022:
With everything that has happened in the world over the past two years, it is not surprising that healthcare has been one of the most active areas of IoT development. Of course, this is a wide field of application. It includes everything; from using cameras in public spaces to monitor social distancing to fitness bands and trackers to monitor lifestyles. Specialized medical equipment, including blood pressure and heart rate monitors, insulin pumps, defibrillators and oxygen pumps, are now often connected, allowing data to be collected. This helps doctors better understand patients' conditions and lifestyles.
Furthermore, IoT also enables physicians to examine, diagnose and treat larger numbers of patients. Healthcare can also be expanded to regions where doctors or hospitals are difficult to reach physically because they are far away or difficult to access.
The IoT has huge implications for the way we produce goods, deliver services, sell to customers and provide support. Smart factories and logistics installations are becoming increasingly automated, and the availability of robotics and IoT infrastructure “as-a-service” means that by 2022 more and more smaller companies will begin to take advantage of the opportunities this presents. Building IoT automation into business models offers companies the opportunity to benefit from increased efficiency, gaining data-driven insight into their operations and processes.
Wearable devices such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) headsets will increasingly be used for a number of use cases, including training, equipment maintenance and process simulation. In manufacturing operations, IoT technology includes sensors placed on machines to measure performance and enable predictive maintenance. There are also opportunities with IoT tools such as 3D printing. These kinds of innovative ways will open up opportunities to build and create products, and allow for greater customization and personalization, while also minimizing waste.
With the enormous growth in the number of devices connected to the internet, there are also more and more ways in which the technology can be hacked. The number and scale of cyber attacks is increasing every year. According to security researchers at Kaspersky, there were 2021 billion attacks against IoT devices in the first half of 1,5. And it is certain that we will see this trend accelerate in 2022.
IoT devices provide access points to our networks because they are often not as secure as computers or smartphones. Another threat comes because the "stuff" of the IoT is sometimes made up of small or lightweight components that can be lost or stolen. To provide protection against unauthorized users who have acquired physical possession of the devices, it is necessary to add extra security. Fortunately, there are also positive changes, as manufacturers are tweaking the shipping of devices with default passwords. Consumers are also beginning to better understand the risks.
The IoT isn't just a security threat: by collecting data on network traffic and usage, connected devices fuel algorithms used to predict and prevent cyber-attacks.
Edge computing and the IoT go hand in hand. In simple terms, this means that devices are built with built-in analytics capabilities. This is done so that computing is as close as possible to the source of the data to be analysed.
The advantage of Edge Computing and IoT is that calculations can be performed much faster. Another benefit is that reducing the amount of data sent to the cloud and back reduces network congestion. As more organizations continue to look to hybrid cloud ecosystems to deliver IoT services to their customers, edge computing is expected to become an increasingly important part of the solution. Especially when delivering fast and secure insights is a must.
Resilience is high on the agenda for companies and organizations after the unprecedented disruption of the past two years. IoT technology offers great opportunities for this to build more robust and disaster-resistant organizations. This includes more than just security, but also features such as making sure a company has the right skills to make big changes. Like the shift to work from home we've seen in 2020 and 2021.
Resilience can be enhanced with the help of IoT, for example by tracking inventory movements between a company, suppliers and customers to anticipate potential delays and anticipate emergencies in global problems.
Monitoring tools that track staff movement around facilities and monitor staff efficiency can be used to understand workplace attrition. It is also possible to anticipate shortages or shortages of skills, so that a company does not run into problems. IoT solutions designed to help businesses predict and respond to disruptions from many different sources will undoubtedly continue to be a source of major innovation into 2022 and beyond.
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