Internet of Things (IoT) - Part 5 (Applications)

Topic Covered
  • IoT applications
Now that we understand the Internet of Things and its features, let’s see how the IoT applies to our daily lives.
The figure below depicts various applications of IoT in our daily lives.
IoT in every aspects of our lives
Figure: IoT in every aspect of our lives
From the figure, we can clearly see that IoT influences every aspect of our lives, starting form home to transport to medicine!
Let’s have a look at how the IoT is doing that.
With the use of IoT network protocols, devices in the home are connected to the home network and are accessible directly, over the home network and even remotely from across the world. These connected home devices are able to coordinate energy usage, consumer convenience and possibly accurately and consistently anticipate the needs of the people dwelling in the homes. Mobile app-controlled thermostats and lighting solutions can already be found on retail store shelves. There is also a noticeable range of safety devices, that include remote system failure indicators, virtual tracking, etc. The technology is also being extended to all other home use gadgets and devices.
Some of the IoT smart home applications are:
  • Home security and Access control
  • Lighting control
  • Home health care
  • Fire detection including leak detection
  • Energy efficiency
  • Solar panel monitoring and control
  • Temperature monitoring and HVAC control
  • Automated meter reading
IoT Application
Figure: Smart Home – IoT Application
Use of IoT in every aspects of Smart Home
Figure: Use of IoT in every aspect of Smart Home
Clinical Care: IoT-driven monitoring systems are used for hospitalized patients whose physiological status requires constant close attention. These monitoring systems employ sensors to collect physiological information that is analyzed and stored using gateways and the cloud. This information is then sent wirelessly to caregivers for further analysis and review. It provides a continuous automated flow of information. Thus, the quality of care is improved through constant attention that in turn lowers the cost of care.
IoT in Clinical Care
Figure: IoT in Clinical Care
Remote monitoring: Due to the lack of immediate access to effective health monitoring systems, many lives suffer risks. Small, powerful, wireless solutions connected through the IoT are making it possible for remote monitoring of those patients who require immediate attention. Patient’s health data are captured using various sensors and are analyzed and sent to the medical professional for proper medical assistance remotely.
Sensors connected on a patient for Remote Health Monitoring
Figure: Sensors connected on a patient for Remote Health Monitoring
IoT in Remote Health Monitoring
Figure: IoT in Remote Health Monitoring
Smart Energy
IoT solutions are used in Energy sectors for efficient and smart utilization of energy.
  • Smart grid: “A smart grid is a modernized electrical grid that uses analog or digital information and communications technology to gather and act on information, such as information about the behaviors of suppliers and consumers, in an automated fashion to improve the efficiency, reliability, economics, and sustainability of the production and distribution of electricity.” – Wikipedia.
  • Smart meter: “A smart meter is usually an electronic device that records consumption of electric energy in intervals of an hour or less and communicates that information at least daily back to the utility for monitoring and billing. Smart meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system. Unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting.” – Wikipedia.
With Smart Energy Metering, not only do technicians not need to come and physically read your meter, you have access personally to your energy usage so you can see what impact your consumption patterns have on your wallet and on the environment.
Reasons for the smart grid:
  • Stopping power threat.
  • Higher quality/reliability of power, fewer blackouts.
  • Efficient energy utilization.
  • A smart grid is required for renewable power.
From conventional grid to Smart Grid
Figure: From conventional grid to Smart Grid
Connected Cars
A very useful implementation of IoT is the introduction of connected cars. The cars have sensors attached to them that help them analyze the traffic of the road, keep them updated about the road condition and also keeps them connected with the road control center for further assistance. There are on-board diagnostic systems that alert you about nearly everything in the car, from faulty lights to tire pressure.
Connected Car
Figure: Connected Car
Another significant implementation of IoT is in the field of environmental care. Global warming is an issue, IoT is being used to tackle this critical problem. Also, IoT allows quicker notification of natural disasters, thus saving crucial time. It also promotes better analysis and reporting. Also, this technology helps in pollution and waste management using warning sensors.
Smart Waste Management
Figure: Smart Waste Management
As it is with homes, our cities are also benefiting from this technology (IoT). The clearest examples are driving convenience (real-time traffic tracking and parking information) and electricity optimization (using resources like lightning depending on weather conditions and automated malfunction reporting). All major cities of the world are welcoming IoT based solutions.
Smart City with IoT
Figure: Smart City with IoT
With the growth of IoT, business models are hugely innovated. It has become much easier to manage multiple locations and keep a close quality check. More customers can be reached all at once and hence a greater growth of the business.
IoT in Business
Figure: IoT in Business
Using connected government, government sectors can keep a track of its local governing bodies like a municipal corporation. It can also keep track of its employee productivity. Common people can request their needs and the government can deliver the service quickly. Also, with the massive amount of data collected from IoT sensors, it can lead to new innovations. And not to forget, citizens can also gain a piece of knowledge about the working of their respective government.
IoT and Government
Figure: IoT and Government
The agricultural sector is not behind in IoT applications. In fact, it is doing more innovation with IoT. IoT strategy is being utilized in the agricultural industry and it is a huge success in terms of productivity, pest control, water conservation and continuous production based on improved technology and methods. Some influences of IoT in agriculture are:
  • Crop monitoring: Sensors can be used to monitor crops and the health of plants using the data collected. Sensors can also be used for the early monitoring of pests and disease.
  • Food safety: The entire supply chain, the Farm, logistics and retails, are all becoming connected. Farm products can be connected with RFID tags, increasing customer confidence.
  • Climate monitoring: Sensors can be used to monitor temperature, humidity, light intensity, and soil moisture. These data can be sent to the central system to trigger alerts and automate water, air and crop control.
  • Logistics monitoring: Location-based sensors can be used to track vegetables and other Farm products during transport and storage. This enhances scheduling and automates the supply chain.
  • Livestock farming monitoring: The monitoring of Farm animals can be monitored via sensors to detect potential signs of disease. The data can be analyzed from the central system and relevant information can be sent to the farmers.
    IoT in Agriculture
    Figure: IoT in Agriculture
And the list of IoT applications continues.
Let’s have a look at Libelium’s smart world info-graphic to see the vast application of the IoT.
Numerous IoT Applications
Figure: Numerous IoT Applications
That’s all for this article. Hope you enjoyed reading!!
P.S.: This article is also published on my blog.