Expertise

4 min reading

21 June 2022

21 June 2022

What does IoT Stand for? Specifications, Characteristics, and Features

What does IoT Stand for? Specifications, Characteristics, and Features
What does IoT Stand for? Specifications, Characteristics, and Features
Summary

Let’s start by answering the main question – What does IoT stand for? The easiest answer here will be that IoT stands for the Internet of Things, which is in turn a set of technologies that allow IoT companies and consumers to interact with each other. IoT devices need to be connected and embedded with customer support for better use and development. This allows services to be adjusted and improved on-the-fly based on customer requests. IoT devices also learn from their users, so they can make more accurate decisions.

Specifications

To date, the IoT has grown to span many vertical and horizontal domains. To meet the demands of a rapidly growing Internet of Things, it is necessary for relevant industries to cooperate across partnerships and alliances. Standardization efforts need to synchronize and deepen cooperation to meet these goals. Ultimately, the Internet of Things will allow for wider Internet connectivity, meaning more accurate data points is in the hands of end-users.

One of the earliest IoT working groups was created to develop standards for IoT protocols in resource-constrained environments. Their main output was the “Constrained Application Protocol” (RFC 7252), or CoAP. A radically simplified UDP-based equivalent to HTTP, which was aimed at providing a single, simple, and reliable communication channels for internet-connected devices and IoT-based systems. CoAP protocol included extensions to allow group communications, a server push for resource observation, and a web link format for describing gadgets and IoT services. The specifications of IoT gadgets must provide reliable communication, high availability, and scalability. Further, IoT middleware must provide rapid processing in IoT devices.

LPWAN

IoT-LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) operational technology can be categorized under the characteristic noun – massive IoT. This industry term describes the concept of billions of connected appliances that communicate with each other via small data volumes sent in regular intervals, utilizing very little power. This accommodates wireless, battery-powered physical devices designed for simple deployment and high scalability. Many LPWAN technologies utilized unlicensed radio spectrum, keeping OPEX low and increasing the ease of accessibility. Currently, there are several different LPWAN technologies available, so you can choose the one more suitable for your use case.

Narrowband IoT

Narrowband IoT is a type of LPWAN that runs in the licensed (cellular) spectrum. The technology has been designed to operate on narrow-spectrum bands, such as 180 kHz and 200 kHz. It favors Internet connection stability and offers low latency, with an average latency of 1.6 to 10 seconds. Its wide coverage and low power consumption make it an excellent option for many M2M/IoT applications. However, the price tag is somewhat higher than that of its more widely used counterparts due to cellular connectivity fees and less competition in the ecosystem.

Light-Fidelity (Li-Fi)

Light-fidelity IoT specifications are being developed to support future 5G networks. In addition to enhancing connectivity for IoT applications, LiFi is also more energy-efficient than Wi-Fi, for example. This technology eliminates the need for several electrical gadgets and is compatible with LED lighting. This is a good match for c smart lighting systems, smart homes, and more.

Characteristics

The Internet of Things (IoT) technologies can be broadly classified into two main categories: connected devices and software. Smart appliances are connected by means of communication networks and are made up of many different parts, known as transducers. Transducers convert a specific signal into a different form of energy, which can then be sent or received by the user. For example, connected cars could automatically update their software when traveling to a new destination. Such IoT applications make the concept of smart cities more possible, making the world more comfortable for human beings.

Connectivity and Uniqueness

The Internet of Things is a vast network of interconnected everyday devices. These gadgets continuously sense data from their environment and share it with other devices connected or transmit it to a cloud server. The other characteristics of industrial IoT devices include connectivity and unique identity. Every smart IoT device should be connected to the network, regardless of its presence. Additionally, each IoT device must have its own unique identity, which will allow it to access, identify, and sensor data from the cloud.

Privacy Standards

In terms of privacy and security, IoT devices produce information that must be reported. These values must be consistent and accurate within a specific context. For example, mobile IoT technology can be used to tag multiple events with location data. However, the privacy of IoT data is not fully protected during transmission. To address this issue, governments and standardization bodies are requiring manufacturers to develop an open, common standard for all those devices and sensors that process data and send it to the cloud. Further, these standards are necessary to make the smart ecosystem, which includes different technologies, more scalable and developed. Electrical and electronics engineers are those people who control smart devices’ development and operation through wireless networks and for these electronic devices to be successfully integrated into the IoT ecosystem, it is important to follow some standards.

Other Characteristics

The Internet of Things or IoT aims to connect devices of the physical world and digital world together, so they can share data in industrial settings and business processes. These technologies and applications enable the creation of new business models, social platforms, and even societal improvements. Internet of Things and other technologies will enable appliances to collect and transmit data that will aid decision-making, enhance research and development, and improve processes. The creation of a smart control system can become a powerful tool for both enterprise IoT and society.

Internet of Things projects have a wide range of applications, contexts, and industries. While some projects are just starting out, others have become the backbone of vital operations and processes in fleet management, energy management, smart manufacturing, and the healthcare industry.  Internet of Things is here to stay, and this trend will not slow down anytime soon, especially considering the massive amounts of connected IoT devices manufacturing. IoT device management itself is basically the future and its benefits cannot be understated.

Features

What are the main IoT features? Generally, the definition of IoT already explains its main features, but digging deeper we still can outline a few of the most important, especially considering the fact that new features are constantly evolving. IoT technologies represent the next step on the Internet, a way for connected smart objects to gather, send and act on data. By connecting the physical world, the Internet of Things can improve resource utilization, increase efficiency, monitor natural resources, and gather other information, which can improve the safety and quality of smart cities. The Internet of Things is an increasingly popular technology because it can minimize the effort of a person while maximizing the efficiency of equipment functions, and adjusting security systems and supply chains’ monitoring.

Main Characteristic Features

The main features of IoT include connectivity, analysis, integration, and active engagement. These features can only be achieved by using a distributed architecture that can shrink and expand dynamically. The Internet of Things is a combination of consumer IoT devices and networking infrastructure, all the data of which is interconnected to create an ecosystem that can enhance life and work safety and quality. With a well-developed IoT strategy, which involves specialized sensors operating on machine-learning algorithms, organizations can achieve paperless workflow and real-time data collection, leading to smooth supply chain operations.

Connectivity

The real-world number of elements connected to IoT is growing day by day. Therefore, it is essential that an IoT setup can handle massive expansion and a large number of devices necessary for different use cases. Connectivity is crucial to enabling reliable communication between IoT devices and IoT platforms. Those platforms may be on a cloud or server. For this, high-speed messaging and a dependable connection are necessary. The data monitoring and storing system is a critical component of the Internet of Things. Many IoT devices are physical objects without their source of connection and need a huge number of other things to send data and receive data. There are billions of devices working under the IoT platform but more than half of them can operate only using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth low energy (BLE). It controversially impacts IoT security and the collaboration of these devices with other applications. So, with more devices like that present on market, you should be more picky and rational choosing industrial applications, smart home assistant, or artificial intelligence (AI) platforms.

Advanced Analytics

Moreover, it’s important to note that IoT devices are not the only internet-connected things to a smart monitoring system. In addition to hardware, software, and connectivity protocols, the IoT technology ecosystem encompasses a variety of processes. From big data analytics to cloud computing, from fog computing to edge computing, the smart ecosystem requires cutting-edge gateways and IoT platform software. The features of IoT can vary depending on the device, but they are common to all IoT solutions, and a reliable data analytics system together with machine learning are a must for successful IoT work and data processing. When devices are all set up and do not require human intervention, they can be effectively used for predictive maintenance, increase revenue streams, and major smart city projects. With proficient technology, you can optimize literally everything, a connected car, smart oven, alarm clock, security camera, and even medical devices or baby monitors. When the Internet of Things explained and understood they improve efficiency of your business or smart cities projects regardless of what are they related to, farming techniques, industrial settings, or energy consumption utility areas. Machine-to-machine communication, embedded in IoT devices, in turn, helps the real world.

Integration

IoT integration involves the process of making the data and IoT applications from industrial devices that work together. It includes making the data produced by these gadgets available to the full list of interested parties. Data may be produced by smart devices and pushed up the network to aggregation points or database servers. These results are then triggered by a query. Data can be time-stamped and geo-located and may consist of simple key-value pairs or rich audio/video content. IoT integration involves making data from independently designed IoT applications and data from other types of systems work well together.

It is particularly beneficial for businesses that are looking for new ways to increase efficiency and profitability. IoT integration involves integrating various appliances, from light bulbs to public cloud platforms. To take full advantage of IoT, it is best to integrate these devices with cloud software.

Active Engagement

Currently, the most popular IoT devices are smartwatches, earbuds, home automation systems, home security systems, smart air conditioning, connected vehicles and inventory management systems, and some other wearable devices. Augmented reality gadgets are soon to be popular as well, especially in the industrial sphere, where there is an acute need for safe equipment testing and training employees without real risks. When companies minimize risk in such a way, it does not only enhance worker safety but also improves workers’ interaction with everyday objects and important technologies in a cost-saving way. Smart appliances and connected televisions collect data about the physical environment. These devices are the most useful of all. This means that you can access information from anywhere, using an app.

Security of the Internet of Things

While consumer IoT security standards are already available, the new ones defining the security of other characteristics haven’t been released widely yet. In 2019, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute released the first consumer-oriented consumer-level security standard. This is a significant development because consumer security standards have never been addressed at this scale before. Similarly, the former U.S. president has signed the Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2020, which directs the National Institute of Standards and Technology to develop minimum cybersecurity standards for IoTs controlled by the United States government. Such examples of the official definition of Internet services safety increase trust in Internet of Things appliances and make them a valuable investment.

What are the Main Areas of IoT Application?

When we are talking about the main areas for IoT applications, we cannot really outline only several of them. IoT technologies can be applied to any sphere of our daily and working life. IoT refers to a low-cost system, which can bring a range of benefits to any area of expertise.

As for the most popular fields of application, we can name the following ones:

  • Smart Buildings
  • Smart Metering
  • Industrial
  • Asset Tracking
  • Healthcare
  • Agriculture

Smart Building

IoT for smart buildings is one of the most obvious examples since it is widely popularized among common people. A smart home can monitor how well you brush your teeth, what radio station you’re listening to, and what kind of food you’re eating. These devices can also track your child’s behavior, and even track who visits or passes by your house.

Speaking of smart buildings, we don’t mean only homes. IoT applications in retail are a prime example of smart building systems as well. These sensors detect the same changes necessary for successful asset management and follow basically the same proprietary protocols. IoT beacons can alert shoppers of special deals, direct staff to customer support areas, and even help the customer wait in line at the checkout. Customer behavior will be significantly improved as a result and they will be able to more easily connect with a particular company. So. some simple sensors can drastically improve customer experience and improve the efficiency of a business. Retailers can use these technologies to create personalized promotions based on past purchases and demographic characteristics. IoT offers vast amounts of information for better business decisions, which will save time and money for the owners.

Smart Metering

IoT is a rapidly evolving technology. In fact, it has been around for more than 10 years, and smart metering is just one of the latest uses. The IoT for smart metering technology can help utilities reduce their bills by as much as 30%. Companies are increasingly turning to IoT for smart metering to help them track and manage the cost of water or gas, following the goal of reducing energy consumption. By using IoT for smart metering, utilities will be able to collect and analyze data more effectively and efficiently than ever before.

Industrial

IoT can enable automated vehicle fleet management and be used in regular transportation. This system enables fleets to be rerouted based on traffic conditions and driver availability. Inventory systems can use IoT sensors to track inventory, such as in the food and beverage industry, or the flower and pharmaceutical industry. Smart cities have the ability to alleviate traffic monitoring and address environmental issues. In the future, the IoT can help in many other ways, from alleviating traffic to improving sanitation.

Asset Tracking

IoT for asset tracking helps organizations find missing cargo and equipment. It can also help them determine how long they spend searching for lost assets. What is more, real-time data on asset conditions can be invaluable to businesses. This big data will help businesses identify lost assets faster and minimize the need for costly replacements. With this technology, any asset that is large enough to have an IoT sensor can be tracked instantly across the world.

Healthcare

Healthcare is another area of IoT application. Hospitals are increasingly implementing IoT systems to keep track of inventory. In healthcare, IoT sensors and devices are increasingly used to monitor patients and allocate resources. What is more, a typical IoT system can be applied in healthcare to keep track of patients’ condition changes and access important archives. Adding sensors to the healthcare sector will establish new models of making informed decisions in healthcare, send alerts when attention is needed, and reduce costs. There are many other examples of why devices connected to the Internet are beneficial for the medical sphere and other different verticals but we will not focus on this and rather tell about the benefits of IoT as one of the most important technologies nowadays.

Agriculture

The use of IoT in the farming industry has many benefits, such as making the process of agricultural production more efficient and reducing costs. In addition, smart farming is one of the most promising areas of IoT application, as it allows farmers to use meaningful insights gained from collected data to improve their yields. One example of smart farming is a soil moisture sensor, which can detect how much water is being used on a particular crop and if the crop needs a custom fertilizer. Livestock monitoring is another popular example. Smart devices can alert the first responders to a potential emergency and reduce the number of lost or injured cattle. Similarly, these devices can track workers’ vital signs in life-threatening situations, which can improve worker safety. There are many other uses in agriculture such as light monitoring in greenhouses, smart irrigation, and others.

TEKTELIC as a Global IoT Provider

TEKTELIC is a leading global provider of end-to-end IoT solutions, specializing in the design, development, and deployment of custom IoT products. Founded in 2009, the company has a proven track record in designing and developing custom hardware products for the largest actors in different spheres. Our highly-integrated products are optimized for computing power and form factor, so you always have an opportunity to choose.

TEKTELIC Gateways

The TEKTELIC gateway is a high-performance dual-radio IoT product that is designed to enable communications across two different frequencies simultaneously. Unlike other connected devices and gateways, it can transmit data while simultaneously receiving it. This unique feature is particularly advantageous for IoT deployments, where a single gateway may be inadequate for critical infrastructure deployments. The TEKTELIC gateway can support dual-band communication protocols, as well as multi-sub GHz band, and supports both open standard ISM and licensed bands. In addition to providing carrier-grade performance, TEKTELIC offers customized product design and sustaining services.

A good example is TEKTELIC KONA Mega IoT Gateway, which supports dual LoRaWAN antennas, enabling Rx diversity. This makes it ideal for applications that require a high degree of versatility. Its dual-radio capability makes it ideal for remote monitoring and control, and can also support industrial Internet of Things applications. The connected device is easy to install and can be fully integrated into the LoRa ecosystem. It will transfer data collected to a centralized data center via wireless networks and trigger particular industrial systems as needed. Basically, you can use TEKTELIC KONA Mega IoT Gateway for collecting data from such smart home devices as smart thermostats, air monitors, security cameras, and other consumer devices. It follows data encryption Internet protocol, so your connected sensors, smart meters, and asset management systems will be secure parts of IoT infrastructure.

TEKTELIC Sensors

TEKTELIC everyday and industrial sensors based on IoT are also quite unique. Sensors, which TEKTELIC produces are usually multifunctional, easy to install, affordable, and, more importantly, can become a part of end-to-end solutions. For example, if we take TEKTELIC VIVID sensor, it can easily monitor motion, temperature, humidity, light, and open/closed doors and windows at once. Besides. this sensor can be mounted to the wall, or ceiling or placed on the table. It is small in size and has a sleek universal design, so it will not be a problem for you to deploy it at the home, office, or any other type of indoor space. What is more, it is a part of many TEKTELIC solutions, including TEMPO as it collects data necessary to understand the conditions inside a particular space.

TEKTELIC End-to-End Solutions

In addition to sensors and gateways, TEKTELIC offers an exceptional line of products — end-to-end IoT solutions. Our end-to-end solutions are ready-made products, once deployed work without any additional appliances. One of the most prominent examples is our TEKTELIC TEMPO Meeting Room Booking Solution. This solution includes an E-Ink display, Smart Room Sensor, and KONA Micro Gateway to provide users with the best visibility on room occupancy and bookings schedule. Besides, TEMPO can be synchronized with Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar, so accessing valuable information, adjusting bookings, or any details is easier than ever.

Key Implications

The term IoT or Internet of Things is a promising information technology, which will occupy a great part of the innovative devices market. That is why it is more than reasonable to buy IoT-based products and integrate them into your daily life. In turn, if you are looking for a reliable IoT network provider, you should consider TEKTELIC. Our Canadian-based company is committed to providing affordable, easy-to-operate IoT networks for businesses of all sizes and for common users.

So, if you want to have a decent smart environment not only for the short term but for the really long term, you should write to the TEKTELIC support team for our future partnership and cooperation.

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