I Dream of IoT/Chapter 9 : IoT and The Next 20 Internet Years

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Internet of Things: The next 20 internet years

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The next 20 years of the Internet of Things (IoT) will see an evolution of mobile, home and embedded devices that will be connected to the internet. We'll surely see huge improvements in internet communications and computing that will transform our businesses, lives, industries, and other aspects of our world in countless ways. The internet is creating new global technologies and creating integration opportunities for the rest of the world. Seeing the rapid growth from the old cellular grid to the rapid advancements in data-streaming over wireless cellular networks, one day maybe the internet will be a giant, invisible, omnipresent grid streaming data and information over the air. If today we need a WiFi signal to get online, within the next 20 years perhaps we'll see an improved network technology that will span from border to border, without limits.

Technology developments

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We're already seeing technology paradigm changes, with streaming entertainment replacing traditional cable television. With broader adoption of high-speed wireless internet, why do we need cable television? Perhaps producers of TV content will realize that there is more ad profit if they stream directly to consumers.[1]

We'll see other changes as well, including the integration of biology and the computer. For example, a handful of companies today are already depending on biometrics such as thumbprints, facial and voice recognition, and retinal scans, but biometrics can be further enhanced due technological advances. More commonly today, companies are turning to small USB "tokens" with pin code, plus an additional pin code that has to be memorized in order to strengthen up their security. Unfortunately, it's hard to carry that token everywhere, plus it is easily stolen or lost. Thus, in 20 years, implanted biometrics might be done where security tokens will be embedded into the body and the presence of the token can be detect by a sensor. With the presence of a correctly implanted token combined with the remembered password, access can be gained. This is much more secure because an implant is much more difficult to steal.[1]

Internet for health

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In 20 years, the progress of internet applications and technology will transform the healthcare industry. Already medical implants are tapping into the concept of IoT by broadcasting information that can be collected outside the body. Such implants can help prevent disease by alerting medical professionals of vitamin deficiencies, abnormal cell counts, malfunctioning organs, or even cancer. Such devices will even be useful therapeutically, administering medications automatically, much in the same way a pacemaker stabilizes a heart.[2]

Apart from implantable devices, the healthcare industry is likely to be radically changed by hospice robots (health service), such as those characterized in futuristic movies like Robot & Frank and Big Hero 6. An aging population is already putting great pressure on our healthcare system, increasing related costs. With robotic technology and improvements in internet communications and connectivity, we’ll be able to improve how we care for the sick, disabled, and elderly. Every patient can have one-on-one care, and people can rest with their loved ones while they are receiving focused and inexpensive care. Certainly, human contact has been shown to be beneficial for the sick and elderly. If hospice robots become the norm, there’s a risk that patients will go without any real human contact for long periods of time. The robots are coming, but it’s the decisions we make about how to use them that will determine whether these robots will distance patients or instead facilitate more frequent interactions with distant friends and relatives.[2]

Ten gadgets and apps of the future

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Here are 10 examples of futuristic gadgets that utilize the IoT concept[3]:

1. Smart Tennis Sensor By attaching the Smart Tennis Sensor to the racket, all shot data is recorded and displayed in real time on a Bluetooth-connected smartphone. From the app screen, we can check the type of swing, swing speed, ball speed, ball spin and others for every shot. All data are recorded in the smartphone, and the play reports are created automatically so that we can look back and analyze our tennis game. The Smart Tennis Sensor can also work alone without the smartphone.

2. Moto 360 Moto 360 is a smartwatch. It's just like linking up with the entire world through Android wear. It predicts and shows the weather or the upcoming events. You can also keep in touch through e-mails and chat like Facebook and Messenger directly without having to pull your mobile device from your pocket. Because it's powered by Android Wear, we can just use our voice to do all the things we do like send texts and more without even touching it.

3. Skybell When someone rings the bell of your front door, WiFi-enabled SkyBell sends a real-time alert and makes a video conversation with your visitor available over your Android or iOS device. The speaker and microphone are built in to allow a conversation without opening the door. It’s also equipped with a motion sensor which will alert you when someone approaches and stands at your door for 10 seconds. It also has night vision and can save a screenshot of what you see.

4. Fitbit ZIP The ZIP wireless activity tracker is able to track your path, your distance, and calories burned. Its silicon clip is comfortable for wearing throughout the day, everywhere. It’s also sweat-proof and able to stand up to the rain and other splashes. ZIP also can automatically sync the data to PCs, MACs, iOS devices, and Android devices.

5. Trakdot The Trakdot is a tracking device that can be paired with your cell phone and packed together in your suitcase. Once you arrive at a certain place, Trakdot will send an SMS or e-mail to your phone that notifies you of your bag’s location.

6. Sen.se Mother Mother connects to Motion cookies (four are included), a small sensor that had been programmed to measure or detect all the things around your home such as when your kids brushed their teeth. Mother sends the notifications by e-mail, text messages, or voice mails. It also has a storybook feature that tells you your own story, checking your activity and whether it's normal or deserves attention.

7. Delphi Connect This module helps you monitor a vehicles from the smartphone or computer. It can to lock the door, engage the horn, and engage the remote car starter directly from your smartphone and computer. It also has a diagnostic tool that securely accesses your vehicle’s driving data and the mechanical conditions that can be seen in your smartphone or computer. It also shows the vehicle’s location and reviews driving skills. Set up an e-mail and text message to receive notifications if your vehicle exceeds a certain speed.

8. Withings Scale This is a wireless scale that measures weight and calculates BMI. It also measures body fat percentage by uploading through WiFi. From the smartphone or computer, you can access the chart and graph personally.

9. Google Glass These amazing internet-connected glasses have a camera, microphone, and much more. They're goal is to make hands-free technology a reality for people. By using voice commands, we can retrieve information from phones, participate in Google Hangout conversations, or get information from the internet.

10. LIFX light bulb LIFX is an energy-efficient LED light bulb that can be controled using smart devices. It has the ability to change the full color of light at your home or workplace using your smart phone. Improve your quality of sleep by slowing dimming lights and wake up in the morning with automatically increasing light.

Investment in IoT in the next 20 years

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The Internet of Things (IoT) will double the size of the connected internet over the next 20 years, and huge investments into that future are being made right now. The major internet power-brokers are already investing billions of dollars into IoT, and it is imperative that companies understand IoT now in order to benefit from trillions of dollars of pent-up value that will be released as 10 billion individuals, devices and services are connected together.

IoT contains a considerable amount of groundbreaking thinking and deep-level market insight. As the number of humans grows in this world, there will be new problems to solve. Day by day the user expects more from the internet. But to meet the need of these higher expectations, increasing investment towards the internet has to be make every year. Just imagine what we could accomplish in the next 20 years with this great technology with a significant investment into it.


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In conclusion, IoT and the next 20 internet years will see a variety of changes. Automation will certainly be a major player as an increasing number of devices is connected. Traditional work from offices as well as media, healthcare, and daily activities will change. However, to realize these imagined futures, a significant investment must be made.


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  1. a b Dube, R. (7 March 2012). "What Computer Technology & The Internet Will Look Like In 20 Years [Opinion]". MakeUseOf. MakeUseOf Limited. Retrieved 8 June 2016.
  2. a b Lejuwaan, J. (25 March 2010). "10 Ways the Next 10 Years Are Going To Be Mind-Blowing". HighExistence. Retrieved 8 June 2016.
  3. Marr, B. (22 July 2014). "The 21 Coolest 'Internet of Things' Gadgets You Will Want Today". LinkedIn. Retrieved 8 June 2016.

Authors and editors

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  • Narul Nooryani
  • Nadzirah Farah
  • Norhana Maisarah