A new year has just begun and like the beginning of anything, everyone has expectations for the year. What then should we expect in the world of IoT for the year 2018? That's why I will be discussing a few IoT predictions and anticipations for 2018.
2017 saw several mergers and acquisitions, buyouts and takeovers in the tech industry. It's believed that these are preludes to the potential we can expect from the fast developing IoT industry infrastructure. 2018 appears to be the year we get to see things take full form.
The number one concern of anything is its security. And security, as it relates to IoT, is a very important topic because of the wide-web of interconnection that IoT makes possible. From your smartphone to your fridge, to your bank account and even your heartbeat. Unfortunately, on the whole, IoT manufacturers have little regard for issues of security when producing their devices. While most simply adopt weak default measures, very few go the extra mile of incorporating proper security measures that protect consumers.
Consequences of weak security protocols vary depending on where the breach is. For instance, a security breach on your IoT smart fridge or washing machine could have insignificant consequences. However, a security breach on say your smartwatch which unlocks your door is a high-level risk.
Good news is that, following the numerous cases of security breaches from IoT in 2017, we can expect the government to take more visible and strict steps in 2018, in enforcing security compliance by IoT manufacturers. Those who wish to remain in business, therefore, will be compelled to do the needful.
On the other side of the coin, malware and ransomware responsible for security breaches can be expected to get more advanced, seeking novel ways to break in. Well, the good guys just have to work harder at keeping up.
Of course, this follows closely after security. If you own a smartphone, then you likely wouldn't have missed the B buzzword of 2017. Yes, Blockchain. Although, most people erroneously substitute blockchain for bitcoin, they are actually both totally different things.
Blockchain is a Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) which basically means a decentralized public ledger which everyone has access to and requires a consensus to make changes to the ledger. Bitcoin is the first and most popular use case of blockchain in the financial sector. Our concern in this article is however, the technology behind bitcoin: blockchain.
In 2018, we can expect several IoT manufacturers to base their devices on the blockchain in order to address issues of security, auditing, tracking and decentralizing communications.
Industrial technology relies a lot on data to realize perfect factory operations. IoT has made the use case of data applications easy to access. With IIoT, one can have a data silo where data from numerous intelligent devices are stored, processed and analyzed to beta aid the delivery of services in the industrial sector.
As a standalone, IoT actually can't achieve anything. However, in conjunction with AI and ML, it can help manufacturers and consumers alike make informed decisions based on research condensed from huge, diverse data.
Gradually, fog technology is gaining grounds in the IoT industry, especially in IIot. With fog technology, IoT systems can become scalable by extending their cloud capabilities to the edge of the network. Adopting fog technology means IoT systems would not need to grapple with issues of bandwidth, latency, costs and reliability. That's because fog technology would handle the processing and analyzed the huge data as close as possible to the data sources.
It took us 115 years from the first telephone call by Graham Bell for us to develop the first website. It took another 16 years for us to have the first iPhone and another 3 years for the first smartphone. Can you see the rate at which technological breakthroughs are speeding up? Why? Mainstream adoption.
2018 is the year mainstream adoptions of IoT will accelerate as manufacturers and consumers double and triple. This means we would have quantum leap developments in areas of ICT and wearables. These are the sectors that would help drive mainstream adoption. On the issue of connectivity, IoT would propel the speedy development of 5G networks. It's internet of things remember? So we need faster internet, stronger antennas and faster processing speed.
IoT is set to affect every facet of humanity this year. Be it the economy, government, business models or lifestyle.
Enjoy the ride.