What is Internet of Things (IoT)?

The Internet of Things (IoT for short) is a Network in which physical objects are connected to other systems or devices via the internet and communicate over it. can. The devices (things) are equipped with the necessary components such as sensors, actuators or microcontrollers to generate and forward the required data.

How does the Internet of Things work?

Certain components are necessary for the functioning of an IoT network. These can be assigned to the process of data collection, data transfer and the Data analysis or the taking of measures for further data processing.

Go to Data collection web-enabled smart devices are needed that are able to collect data, forward it and react to received data. These so-called smart devices often use sensors, antennas, actuators or microcontrollers to collect data.

The Data transfer is established via an IoT hub or an IoT gateway, whereby further data processing can either take place via a cloud or the data can be transmitted via a Edge computing approach can be analysed and processed locally.

At Analysis step the transmitted data is processed and thus serves as a basis for further decisions or measures. This step can be carried out by means of specific analytics and with the aid of artificial intelligence or Machine learning support or other back-end systems can be implemented.

What are the benefits and risks of IoT?

The success and popularity of the Internet of Things can be attributed, among other things, to the following Opportunities and benefits back:

  • NetworkingThrough the possibility of networking, individual digital processes can be coordinated and automated. This can result in time and resource optimisation.
  • ControlThe use of IoT devices can increase the level of automation of control systems by controlling lighting, air conditioning or other elements. Security systems can also be implemented, leading to an increase in safety.
  • MonitoringWith IoT technology, it is possible to permanently monitor and, if necessary, counteract devices and systems. This can be useful primarily for power consumers or high-maintenance devices by suggesting and carrying out maintenance intervals before possible damage.
  • SecurityIoT can also contribute to increasing safety, for example by installing assistance systems in vehicles that support the driver while driving.

Besides the positive effects, the IoT is also associated with some Risks and challenges confronted:

  • Data security: Due to the constant exchange of data between the IoT devices and the network or the Cloud the data is exposed to potential cyber threats, which must be countered by appropriate protective measures. In this respect, particular emphasis should be placed on cybersecurity when implementing IoT.
  • ProprietaryLack of compatibility standards means that systems from different manufacturers are sometimes not compatible with each other and thus cannot be used together. This can result in a limitation in the use of IoT.
  • Data volumeWhile the continuous communication and data transfer can be seen as an advantage in terms of availability, it also leads to the challenge of managing and organising these large amounts of data. With the connection of each additional IoT device, the amount of data and the management effort increases.

What are examples of IoT products or IoT software solutions?

The use of IoT solution is diverse and can be implemented in some areas. For example, Munich Re offers Insurance companies a IoT ecosystem in which companies can analyse data from an insurance perspective and consequently better assess and price hazards and risks. This means that customers can be offered more individualised products.

Another area of application for IoT products is in the Automotive industry. Bosch Mobility Solutions offers IoT solutions for vehicle manufacturers, which Driving assistance systems and infotainmentbut also the functionalities of the autonomous drivingindividualised service offerings and support personalisation.

Also in the Healthcare IoT solutions are increasingly being used. The company ScienceSoft offers products that can be used for the Monitoring of vital signs of patients, but also of medical equipment in facilities. In addition, this can improve processes and reduce bottlenecks.

What is the difference between IoT and IIoT?

Besides some commonalities between IoT and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) there are also differences that separate the two technologies. While the Focus on IIoT on the precision and reliability of components and is located in the industrial environment, aims at IoT more focused on use cases with human involvement as of.

Moreover, IoT often focuses on a business-to-customer connection. IIoT solutions, on the other hand, aim to control and monitor production processes and systems. Furthermore, IIoT use cases are usually confronted with a much higher and continuous amount of data to process than IoT solutions.