Ferli Achirulli/123RF

The Internet of Things is a technology that is booming rapidly. Although the concept has been around for a few years now, we are now in the actual boost of IoT; forecasts believe that IoT devices will expand from 30 million (today) to 75 million in 2025.

As the third largest growing market next to mobile internet and knowledge automation, IoT has plenty of room to disrupt industries and set up new, innovative solutions to age old problems.

1. Construction

Shao-Chun Wang/123RF

IoT is giving construction a maintenance check in real time. With IoT, equipment owners can check the status of fuel consumption, idle time, and machine hours. Some systems can even check fluid temperatures and engine load, to let operators know when is the best time to schedule a check up. Longer lasting equipment saves a lot of time, as it is common that machinery can break down on the job.

Contractors save money using IoT to draw comparisons between similar practices and projects. IoT can also keep track of inventory- letting project managers know when a particular material needs to be ordered. One of the biggest perks to the construction laborer with IoT- is equipment tracking. If you’ve ever been on a job site, you know how common it is for tools to walk off the job site.

2. Insurance


Sensors from IoT have become a serious game changer in the insurance industry. With IoT, insurance agencies can monitor their clients to assess danger levels of each person. Individuals wearing wearables are even offered a discount on their insurance claim.

Insurance companies can even use IoT sensors to understand the conditions of an area; how prone the area is to earthquakes, mold in homes, the probability of fire, etc. This will save insurance companies the risk that they take with blindly assessing some parts of a person’s lifestyle.

3. Supply Chain


Internet of Things will help global shipments never miss a beat. IoT, equipped with the blockchain, can serve the supply chain to create real-time validation of shipping points on an immutable ledger.

IBM has been at the forefront of this concept and implementing blockchain based IoT tracking to all of their shipments. IoT will also give analytics to find what is the most efficient way to send a vast network of items so that the transport vehicle never has empty spaces.

4. Real Estate


How can IoT help somebody sell a house? It’s quite an interesting concept. With the recent development of Big Data allowing companies like Zillow to aggregate information about properties, and users looking for houses on their own, IoT can do the same: let the house sell itself.

Beacons, which are Bluetooth enabled devices that emit a request to other Bluetooth-enabled devices in the area. An interested buyer could go into a house without a broker at all- the beacon can reach out to their device and activate in each room, giving the buyer information about each feature of the house. This gives a lot of breathing room for buyers and could ultimately change the way we sell homes.

5. Medical


With the Internet of Things, the healthcare industry can expand its reach from within the walls of hospitals to the walls of your home. Wearables can monitor your activity and set reminders for you.

Many companies are working to connect clinical data to patients’ phones so that they can receive the correct information based on their IoT data. BowHead has even found a way to combine the blockchain and IoT to give the user the nutrients they are lacking, from a swab of saliva.

6. Energy


Data aggregation for energy industries means more efficient energy usage. IoT can help to detect energy leaks on the grid, whether gas or electric. It will also contribute to better analytics about usage times, and similarly to construction, will assist in defining when is best to implement maintenance on energy equipment.

7. Retail

Dmitry Kalinovsky/123RF

Interactive bar codes can make customer experience of shopping more fun, and smart sensors can give a hand to the workload that retail employees have. In a store with IoT being used, smart sensors can notice when inventory is getting low in relation to how often the product goes. That way, you never buy too much, or too little.

Customers can scan barcodes on shirts to see the supply chain that comes with that shirt: where it has traveled, and who was involved in the process of getting that shirt to the store. IoT and supply chain can work well together to bring a whole new definition to “organic cotton.”

8. Agriculture


Agriculture is using IoT in a big way. Connecting crop harvesting machines to the internet allow drivers to understand what’s going on with their crop yield during that day. The number of IoT devices installed on farms is projected to increase from 30 million (today) to 75 million by 2020. Close monitoring of crops will yield more and provide more for our ever growing population.

FarmBeats is a company working towards low-cost solutions to empower farms large and small with drones, sensors, and machine learning equipment.

9. Manufacturing


Manufacturing is projected to invest over $70 billion in IoT solutions by 2020. The significant interest involves higher efficiency of machines. More and more of manufacturing is being operated solely on machines, and IoT can aggregate data from these machines to improve on them. IoT can spot when repairs are needed, and also check on the system as a whole to produce items faster and cheaper.

10. Consumer Electronics


It’s not just big companies that enjoy interacting with IoT devices- smartphones, smart laptops, and smart home devices are best at understanding what we as people want. Smart devices learn what we like, and in return, we give smart devices data that interested companies can use. This relationship keeps up coming back to smart devices- 2.5 billion smart devices are expected to be in use by 2018 alone.

About Dylan Dedi