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(Internet of things)
IoT is truly all things connected to the internet.
You think you don’t have a smart refrigerator or smart washer so it does not affect you – Wrong!

1. Smart Homes = Efficient Homes
Because a smart home can do automated lighting and shade control, tell you information in real time about your energy usage, or the position of your Garage doors; all these things are considered connected and can streamline the efficiency of your home.

2. Smart Home Technology Can Improve Lives in Unexpected Ways
“A smart home can enable an elderly person to stay in their home longer, rather than go to a nursing home. Technology is an enabler in that sense,” added Atalla, VP sustainability initiatives, KB Home.

“My mother-in-law has Alzheimer’s and we have a number of cameras in the house, just so we know what’s going on,” said Turner, Sr. Director, Google Smart Home Ecosystem. “There are other things we have in the house that can help us help her, and have peace of mind around what’s happening on a daily basis. For people that are disabled, being able to have the voice assistant help them out–whether it’s turning on the lights or other chores in the house–we can do that with technology.”

3. Big Data is a Big Trend
“We are now seeing that what used to be separate systems for us–like HVAC being separate from the lighting and the water and so on–we’re seeing how we can bring them all together under the umbrella of artificial intelligence. Each of these systems can report back data to AI that takes that data, understands it, analyzes it in certain ways, sends it back to different devices that will do different things for the home,” said Atalla.

4. Forget DIY, It’s DIFM (Do It for Me)
“DIFM (Do It for Me), as this market evolves, is absolutely where we’re headed,” said Turner. Consumers really need you to be in there and helping them figure out how to set up a smart home and how to get the basics done.” For the consumer, IoT devices offer new and/or enhanced services. Samsung, for example, offers washing machines that will send a notification to your smartphone when your load is done, or their Android Oven which you can control via their App. Appliances are now smarter and offer consumers an entirely new range of capabilities, thanks to IoT.

5. A billion reasons to pay attention to IoT
Just how many devices are we talking about? According to estimates from Cisco Systems’ Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), in 2015 there was 25 billion connected devices in the world. Since 2008, there have been more devices connected to the internet than there are people on the earth. Cisco estimates that this number will double to 50 billion devices connected to the internet by 2020.

6. Plugging into cows
So what kinds of things are “connected devices?” Are we simply referring to smartphones and tablets? Well, how about cows? Yes, that’s right, cows. Connected cows.
A Dutch company called Sparked has wired up farm cows to the internet with wireless sensors that collect hard data for analysis by the farmers at Old MacDonald’s Farm. What does Farmer MacDonald learn from this data? Multiple things, such as the level of exercise of the cow, their movement and location on the farm, their sleep patterns, and their health (if they are pregnant, how is their pregnancy progressing?) From this data, the farmer can optimize his feed order, improve stall configurations, contact the vet, and much more.

7. Just what is a “thing?”
Connected cows are just one example, but there are many, many more. In a recent TEDx presentation, Dr. John Barrett identified connected things as: goods, objects, machines, appliances, buildings, vehicles, animals, people, plants, and soil. How do you put a “thing” on the Internet of Things? Barrett describes four steps: 1) Give the thing a unique identity; 2) Give it the ability to communicate; 3) Give is “senses” (by using sensors); 4) If it is a machine, vehicle, or appliance, give it the ability to be controlled from anywhere in the world (thanks to embedded micro-electronics). Barret went on to demonstrate how to plug a chair into the IoT and how he-from anywhere in the world- can know if someone is sitting in his chair, and who that person is. “The ability to add connectivity and intelligence today has reached a tipping point,” “Which means everyday things-they could be consumer products, industrial devices, or medical devices,-will evolve. They will begin to have some level of intelligence and awareness, and we’ll be able to interact with those devices in a different manner than we have in the past. “Internet of Everything”-he stats.

8. Smart building materials
Not only will the number of devices grow, but so too will the types of devices. Commenting on the connected home space, Baldwin predicts that amazing things are coming. “I think we’re a few short years from seeing, for example, intelligent building materials,” Baldwin stated. “[Materials such as] joist hangers that have sensors in them that can detect shifts in load…moisture sensors that are just tacked down by the framer in the bottom plate of a home being built,” he said to demonstrate possible concepts.

So much will evolve largely because sensors require almost no energy and are dramatically declining in cost. “I think the biggest explosion we’ll see in IoT, to begin with, will be sensors,” Baldwin said. “It’s all about the input-understanding the environment, understanding behavior, understanding condition-[which] provides an immense amount of intelligence.

9. Sensors make sense to semiconductor manufacturers
If IoT is all about sensors, then this may help to explain why companies like Sony and Samsung have been talking up IoT. Both companies are large sensor and semiconductor manufacturers and would like to lead the charge into a burgeoning IoT business.

Jeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends, to further comment on the topic. He stated that in the “Internet of Things era,” sensors will be embedded in every device and appliance, allowing them to communicate with each other and internet users, “creating an intelligent technology infrastructure for a smart world.”
“The Internet of Things platform will enhance virtually every aspect of our lives-from monitoring our health to improving our athletic skills-marking a vast improvement in our quality of life,” Rifkin said.

So Samsung is clearly going big on IoT. By 2020, 100 percent of all Samsung products, in all categories, will be IoT devices.

10. The Internet of Things is at the heart of everything because everything is going to hang on or off the strength or quality of the internet that is provided in a home.

The Internet of Things is indeed going to be a very big thing in our lives for decades to come.
Excerpts from Ted Green and Megan A. Dutta

Eric Haas, General Manager

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