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As 5G networks roll out across the U.S., so does more discussion about the Internet of Things (IoT).

The Internet of Things, of course, refers to the billions of physical devices around the world that are now connected to the internet, collecting and sharing data. Thanks to cheap processors and low latency 5G technology, it’s possible to turn anything, autonomous cars to garage door openers into part of the IoT.

Consumers are more connected than ever, owning an average of four IoT devices that communicate with the cloud. Globally, an estimated 127 new devices connect to the Internet every second.

A report from the McKinsey Global Institute estimates that the IoT could have an annual economic impact of $3.9 trillion to $11.1 trillion by 2025 across many different settings, including factories, cities, retail environments and the human body.

The actual number of devices expected to be IoT-connected in the near future is anyone’s guess. But what is known is that the IoT has been benefiting from infrastructure improvements that have enhanced connectivity.

About 20% of the world population is covered by low-power, wide-area networks (LPWANs) that allow long-range communications among connected devices while optimizing both costs and power-consumption requirements.

However, in just three more years (by 2022), systems engineers expect everyone on the planet to have access to LPWAN coverage. This is due to  technological advances reducing power requirements, decreasing costs, and promoting the development of more integrated IoT solutions.

The Internet of Things landscape is expected to lay the foundation for several technological advances such as smart cities. In a smart city, municipalities and companies will increasingly adopt smart technologies to save time and money. That means cities will be able to automate, remotely manage, and collect data through things like visitor kiosks, video camera surveillance systems, bike rental stations and taxis.

The Internet of Things has the potential to transform the way cities consume water. Smart meters can improve leak detection and data integrity; prevent lost revenue due to inefficiency, and boost productivity by reducing the amount of time spent entering and analyzing data.

Also, these meters can be designed to feature customer-facing portals, providing residents with real-time access to information about their consumption and water supply.

Smart traffic signals can adjust their timing to accommodate commutes and holiday traffic and keep cars moving. City officials can collect and aggregate data from traffic cameras, mobile phones, vehicles, and road sensors to monitor traffic incidents in real time. Drivers can be alerted of accidents and directed to routes that are less congested. The possibilities are endless and the impact will be substantial.

Want to know more about the Internet of Things? Tonex offers the Internet of Things Training, a 2-day course that covers what the IoT is about, technology trends, deployments and convergence. Learn how to work with building connected devices, sensors, automation, network interconnection, system security, cybersecurity, data analytics and more.

Additionally, Tonex offers several different IoT courses covering everything from cybersecurity issues to Industry 4.0.

For more information, questions, comments, contact us.

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