The IT revolution is well and truly upon us and shows no sign at all in stopping. Even the smallest business has a substantial digital presence that it could not survive without, and larger businesses that are as far removed from IT as possible are looking for bespoke app solutions to meet their needs.
With the world around us becoming more digital by the day, the concept of the ‘internet of things’ has developed to describe this increasing convergence of the real and digital. But what is the IoT, really, and what does it mean for developers?
What is the internet of things?
At the most basic level, the IoT refers to the ever-increasing number of devices that are ‘smart’, or web-aware, and therefore interactive in a digital space. This includes things like smart home appliances, from thermostats to ovens, smart cars, and smart just about anything else, all of which are accessible in some way from internet connected devices.
What does it mean for developers?
While developers have known for years that mobile is the future, the internet of things pushes that concept to the next level, with an ever-increasing number of opportunities to create a disruptive niche.
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There will, however, be a number of new areas for developers to explore in the new IoT environment. To start with, there will be substantial advances and battles to establish the dominant protocols and infrastructure standards that will enable the internet of things to expand. As such, a confident developer could try their hand at infrastructure development.
For most, though, the opportunities will come through creating apps and developing especially convenient or novel interactions between a user’s device and any number of smart devices.
It isn’t entirely clear where the internet of things is going, as it is still very much in its infancy. Smart devices are becoming the norm, but apart from an app to control your lights or heating remotely, there isn’t much there. Those who can harness the disruptive potential of the IoT will be the celebrity entrepreneurs of the next decade.