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Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of devices, vehicles, and home appliances that use embedded systems to connect with each other through the internet for interacting and sharing data with each other. In simple words IoT can be defined as various devices connected with each other to share data with the help of embedded systems.

The concept of IoT came into existence to make devices other than computers, laptops and mobiles, smart and enable them to transfer their smartness to other devices which are considered to be dumb. This technology makes dumb devices like refrigerators smart by adding features so that they can communicate and share data with other devices.

The world-changing technology that came to existence way back in 1999, cannot work without internet as devices come to life only by internet. The only disadvantage of IoT is that they have a strong dependency on the internet and they can be implemented in only areas that have required bandwidth for both connectivity and data sharing.

IoT has taken a major leap after growth in mobile devices and cloud computing. A little credit can be given to technologies like 4G and 5G that help devices communicate with each other at high speed continuously and able to transfer data in very less time.

A device connected to the internet collects data for specific purposes that could be useful to the user or impact a wider economy. For example, in industrial applications, sensors on product lines can increase efficiency and cut down on waste. Forhomes, devices can be controlled by a smartphone, a refrigerator can order vegetables from the local vendor on receiving instructions by owner. These few advantages of IoT save time and money and often simplify many complicated processes.

Everything that is connected to internet can be hacked; IoT products can be no exceptions to this rule. The other problem is surveillance issues; if every product becomes connected then there could be chances of use of the data by some people who are not supposed to possess this data. The data can be misused and could create safety problems to IoT device users.

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Compatible standards are needed for creating a vast reliable IoT network. Connected objects need to be able to speak to each other to transfer data and share what they are recording. All the devices that are connected to IoT need to be on same standards, if not they would struggle to communicate. If standardization of devices is done it would help more devices and applications to be a part of the network.

The different applications in which IoT is leaving a significant impact are:-

Building and Home Automation

IoT makes it possible to monitor and control the mechanical, electrical and electronic system in various buildings using a single system. The main advantages of the interconnection of devices are efficient energy management systems for buildings and hence providing a greener economy. Massive data collection could be a major driver for data science and machine learning while real-time monitoring provides efficiency and accuracy to monitor remote systems.

Transportation

IoT in autonomous driving could result in zero or close to zero traffic in future smart cities that could communicate through sensors and take alternative routes to ease traffic. Data received from vehicles can be used to calculate routes that would lead to the saving of energy. This technology can also be used to solve problems like parking, traffic light control, and toll collection.

Agriculture

Various sensors can be used to monitor humidity, temperature, pH levels, wind speed, rainfall, and even pest infestation. These sensors are integrated with IoT and cloud platforms to help farmers in the automation of different farming practices.

Industry

IoT application for the industry is great and has forced for the creation of a special field called IIOT. Sensors, programs, software systems, and big data analytics for futuristic designs and proper calculations. The IoT enabled machines to improve productivity and fix the mistakes commonly made by humans especially in quality control and sustainability. Industrial applications of IoT continue to gain popularity as they enhance productivity and make the market a better place.

Health Care

IoT enables providing medical assistance over the internet, using drones and improving genetic medicine. It also helps in creating a more personalized approach to health analysis and strategies to combat diseases.

Wearable

This application combines a group of technological devices to be worn by someone that can be empowered by an app or smart-phone. This wearable helps in keeping track of vital body actions and help in improving treatments. Few of them include fitness bracelets, GPS tracking belts, implantable gadgets, and many other IoT applications.

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These are few applications that are most commonly used by people. Stopping of forest fires, creation of safety for logistical needs and goods under transit and predicting weather patterns are few other applications. Many features can be developed by this technology, some can be achieved in near future, but few require more time and research.  Smart televisions that can talk back to us, smart speakers that can control home lighting to maintaining comfortable room temperatures are few that can be achieved in near future.

The future intelligence services can use IoT for identification, surveillance, monitoring, location tracking and targeting for recruitment, or to gain access to networks or user credentials.

IoT is considered to be a revolutionary technology that is capable of solving most of the problems related to automation and real-time inefficiencies.