From smart lighting for your home to devices that can “listen” to machinery and predict future failures, the Internet of Things is extremely advanced. The IoT has advanced far beyond small gadgets you can control from your phone, and shows no signs of slowing down. Here are the 10 most mind-blowing things you can do with the IoT in 2018.
1. Monitor Employee Fatigue Level
Cat Smartband is a wearable cloud-connected sleep monitor developed by Caterpillar. The monitor analyzes the wearer’s fatigue level and can predict when they will become a safety risk.
The software that comes with the Smartband can analyze work schedules and accident reports to help managers schedule workers more effectively, increasing safety and performance.
2. “Listen” to a Machine to Know If It’s Working Properly and Predict Failure
Augury produces a revolutionary machine diagnostic device that listens to the sounds machinery makes, runs these noises through an advanced algorithm that can detect even the slightest changes, and warns you of potential malfunctions via a phone app.
Unlike preventive maintenance that is carried out according to a predefined schedule, Augury’s predictive maintenance system detects the need for maintenance work based on the current state of the machine, thus extending the operational life of your equipment and helping to eliminate catastrophic failures.
3. Create an Optimal Workspace Environment
Plugged into a building’s existing systems, Comfy allows employees to adjust the temperature of their workplace to their liking. All you need to do is open an app and request a stream of warm or cool air delivered directly to your location.
Over time, Comfy’s machine learning algorithms collect enough data to calculate trends and automatically adjust temperature settings.
4. Prevent Limb Amputations from Diabetes
Bluedrop Medical’s home-based device allows diabetics to detect foot ulcers early, when treatment is easier and costs are lower. The device runs a daily scan of the patient’s feet and sends the collected data to the cloud for analysis through algorithms that can detect abnormalities.
Considering that one in four diabetics develop a foot ulcer at some point in their life, and 75,000 foot amputations are performed on diabetics every year in the US alone, this device is a pretty big deal both for patients and for the healthcare system.
5. Light Your Path As You Walk
Pavegen produces smart flooring systems that generate off-grid electricity when people step on the tiles. With Pavegen’s technology, football players and can light stadiums as they’re playing, while pedestrians can light their path or illuminate signage as they’re walking.
As if power generation wasn’t enough, Pavegen also equips each tile with a wireless API that transmits real-time movement data to provide a comprehensive analysis of movement patterns. This information is immensely helpful for understanding consumer footfall behavior patterns.
6. Make Your AI App 100 Times More Effective
Graphcore has created an Intelligence Processing Unit (IPU) — the first processor to be specifically designed for machine intelligence workloads. Together with Graphcore’s software framework, Poplar, these IPU systems improve the performance and efficiency of machine intelligence applications by between 10 and 100 times. This helps lower the cost of AI in the cloud and data center. Graphcore is the most advanced technology for AI application development available today.
7. Keep an Eye on Your Home While You’re Away
With Smartfrog, you can see what’s happening in your home from anywhere at any time. The solution is as simple as it is sophisticated, comprising of only a small camera and a phone app. The camera is equipped with a motion sensor, a microphone, a loudspeaker, and even night vision.
This means you can use your Smartfrog to keep an eye on your pets and talk to them while you’re away, keep your children in sight and get a notification if they start crying, and monitor your house at all times. The app sends you a notification whenever anything moves or makes a noise.
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8. See, Hear, and Speak to Visitors at Your Door — Wherever You Are
SkyBell is a smart video doorbell that sends you a live video alert whenever anyone presses it. Equipped with a microphone, a loudspeaker, and night vision, SkyBell allows you to receive deliveries and scare off unwanted visitors even if you’re not at home. The built-in motion sensor sends you a notification when someone approaches your door but doesn’t press the doorbell, while the full-color night vision allows you to see perfectly at night.
9. Protect the Privacy of Your Smart Home
With all the smart thermostats, ovens, and door locks in our homes, it’s only natural to become a little paranoid about privacy and security. Dojo is a smart device that protects all your other smart devices.
Shaped as a sleek black pebble, Dojo protects your Wi-Fi network and all of your connected home devices from malware, viruses, and cyber attacks. The pebble sends you a notification on your phone whenever it identifies an issue, helping you deal with problems before they can affect your privacy and security. You can choose how to mitigate each issue with just one tap.
10. Give Your Customers Personalized Shopping and Traveling Experiences
Blue Sense Networks are pioneers in the proximity engagement industry. Their flagship product is a top-level, bluetooth-enabled, iBeacon certified beacon. Once implemented, the technology allows you to offer consumers personalized discounts and offers whenever they approach your store, provide contextual information in museums and other places of interest, and build indoor navigation where GPS signal is unavailable.
Blue Sense Networks provides companies with their own cloud platform for iBeacon management, alongside a constantly growing set of tools for developers who build micro-location enabled apps.
Is There a Skills Shortage in the IoT Industry?
The IoT is growing, no doubt about it. It is estimated that by 2020, roughly 30 billion devices worldwide will be connected to the Internet. This boom is expected to result in the creation of over 182,000 new jobs in the UK alone.
This is great news for job seekers, but not for employers — there simply aren’t enough people with relevant skills available on the job market.
According to research by Capita Technology Solutions and Cisco, 70 percent of IT decision-makers find the IoT relevant to their business, yet 71 percent struggle to find employees with the necessary skills.
A new IoT Business Models report from Canonical shares similar findings — 68 percent of the surveyed IoT professionals, developers, and vendors say that recruiting employees with IoT expertise is a struggle. Their research highlights that big data analytics, embedded software development, and embedded electronics skills are especially hard to find.
Which Programming Languages Are Most In-Demand in the IoT Industry?
The tech talent shortage in the IoT is obvious, but what skills are the most needed in the industry?
Java is the default language for software, websites, games, mobile apps, and Android.
2. Low-level languages (C/C++)
Low-level languages are used to build operating systems and embedded applications.
Python’s elegant syntax is perfectly suited for building apps that take data and convert it into a database.
If you’re planning to connect your IoT creation to an Apple device, it’s very likely you’ll need to use Swift.
Of course, the knowledge of these programming languages alone isn’t enough to work in the IoT. It’s important that employees also have an understanding of electronics and data transmission protocols.
In March 2018, you’ll get the perfect opportunity to learn more about where the IoT industry stands today, meet the most influential speakers and service providers, get the latest technical insight, and network with your peers at the largest and most attended IoT event in the world — Smart IoT London.
This two-day conference will address all the key issues surrounding data sharing, security, and most importantly, how your business can leverage the IoT to generate revenue.
Everyone who’s anyone in the world of the IoT will be at Smart IoT London — make sure you don’t miss it.