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The Internet of Things: It’s Interconnection Time

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Nowadays, practically any electronic device can connect to the internet: from cellphones to lamps, to even air-conditioning equipment. This situation is changing the way we live and even the way in which companies offer their products and services to us.  The “Internet of Things” (loT) is here and with it an endless list of opportunities. Are we ready for this interconnection?

Interior - Internet of Things la interconexión de las cosas

If coming up with a non-technical definition for the word Internet is complicated, risking a definition for the “Internet of things (IoT)” is even trickier. So, without getting too much into technical jargon, it is probably best to say that it concerns a network in which real physical objects are connected by means of the internet, in such a way that they can operate independently from humans and therefore allow us to get on with life’s more important things. So much so, that it is said that the significance of the Internet of Things could have an even greater impact on us than the industrial revolution.

“The significance of IoT could have an even greater impact on our lives than the industrial revolution.

It really all sounds a little like science fiction, but would you be surprised to know that there are now supermarkets where you don’t have to take the products to the checkout to find out how much it is all going to cost? Or that there are subcutaneous devices designed for diabetics that measure sugar levels and that can even dose the insulin for the user?  And that your refrigerator makes up the shopping list based on the food that is being consumed and its use-by date? Or, that your smart phone or watch tells you that the crops you have planted outside need to be treated with fungicide due to an infestation of aphids?

These are some of the IoT apps that we will no doubt be seeing shortly, but the question is: Is the internet prepared for all of this? In 2003, there were close to 500 million devices connected to the net, while, according to Cisco, there were 25 billion of them connected in 2015, and it is estimated that there will be 50 billion by the year 2020.

To be able to cope with this growing number of devices,  the present networks and internet infrastructures  will undoubtedly require improvements to be made in order to be able to increase exponentially  both in terms of speed and capacity as the demand of immediacy, capacity and data quality  is a prerequisite to offer this service to users satisfactorily.

However, what would happen if the Internet of Things turned against us? Just think of a world where all of the devices are interconnected and working autonomously. The security systems required would be infinite, or maybe this would not be the case as this would spell out limitations for interconnectivity.  You can read about an  example of the type of problems that might arise published recently in Forbes magazine.

“Technology experts, operators and large engineering and construction companies involved in communication infrastructures must work together to ensure that these IoT infrastructures are safe and streamlined.

So it is the technology experts and the operators, with support from thelarge engineering and construction companies involved in communication infrastructures – like Abengoa, that in a similar way to when present mobile technology was rolled-out (3G, 4G,5G), in addition to optical fibre (FTTH), must work together to ensure that these IoT infrastructures are safe and streamlined, as well as smart to be able to offer simplicity, added value, scalability and reduced installation and operational costs.

Thanks to this agreement, the Internet of Things could be standardized and therefore step over the line from “science fiction to fact.”

Isidro Montoro, Director of Strategy at Abengoa Inabensa.

Isidro Montoro, Director of Strategy at Abengoa Inabensa.

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