The internet is growing every day. We are rapidly moving away from a status quo where only your laptop, smartphone, or tablet is getting connected to the internet. More and more smart devices are popping up by the day and connecting to the internet. From your washing machine to your door lock, the list is practically endless and growing still.
The umbrella term for this phenomenon is the Internet of Things. It refers to the collection of all devices that are connected and talk to each other via the internet. These devices do not have to be the traditional computers or smartphones, not the networking systems that your it support company will build out, but might include any devices fitted with computer chips to make them ‘smart’; chips that allow them to connect to the internet and communicate with other devices.
The Internet of Things, as you might imagine, is humongous. You have probably used your smartphone to communicate with IoT devices lots of times already, including your home thermostat and smart speaker (Alexa anyone?). Even at your workplace, IoT is quite prominent. Just ask your IT support! This system makes work a lot easier for you, allowing you to save money or monitor your home via the smart home surveillance system while you are away.
But while all this is exciting, there are more exciting things to come, according to experts. Here are the wildest predictions about where the IoT is going:
1. Smart cities will be a thing
It won’t just be consumers using IoT devices. Companies and entire cities will utilize these technologies to save not just money but time. In fact, Facebook has already made plans for a new “smart city” and are actively experimenting with it. Entire cities will be able to automate services, collect data for the improvement of those services, and remotely manage a plethora of things via the IoT.
2. IoT will grow exponentially with 5G technology
Despite the controversy surrounding 5G, companies and governments seem keen on adopting and rolling it out. Major carriers are set to continue rolling out the technology in 2020. 5G, or 5th Generation cellular wireless networks, promise incredible speeds and connectivity, allowing even more smart devices to talk to each other faster.
These new networks will allow data collection and analysis to happen on an even greater scale than it already does. Companies will be able to innovate better and boost demand for their products.
3. Smart cars
The auto industry is set to be among the major beneficiaries of the 5G boom. Driverless cars will increase and the existing ones will become even more interconnected. With data moving faster and more efficiently, cars will not only be able to talk to each other, but also to IoT devices on the roadside, allowing for more efficient management of traffic and prevention of accidents.
4. Privacy concerns will increase
As more and more devices connect directly to the 5G network, there will be even more vulnerable points of attack. More and more devices will gradually be able to connect to the 5G network directly, bypassing routers in the process. This means it will be harder for homeowners to monitor all of their devices. This will make it possible for IoT devices to be hijacked and used in DDoS attacks.
5. There will be increased regulation and legislation
Due to increased concerns over privacy and security, there is likely to be increased regulation and legislation in the area of cyber security. These laws could ultimately give you even more control over your data than you currently have, allowing you to own what it truly yours.
The IoT is an exciting field, and it grows ever more exciting by the day. While there are many fears over the new kinds of crimes its growth might encourage, there is also widespread optimism over the better world it might build for us. Through well thought out development and adoption, it could end up being part of the foundation for a better tomorrow.