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What is IoT (Internet of Things) Technology? Importance, Benefits & Pros and Cons

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22nd Apr, 2022
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What is IoT (Internet of Things) Technology? Importance, Benefits & Pros and Cons

The world is full of Technology. And as Technology is increasing rapidly, so is the use of the internet. More and more devices are being developed and designed to work with internet technology. The term internet of things has been intended to refer to all those devices which are now being connected to the internet. These physical devices can connect to the internet and can share data. Through the development and the availability of all the computer systems and cheap chips, anything can now be turned into devices that can be a part of the internet of things.

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Internet of things (IoT) can be defined as a system in which computing devices are interrelated with mechanical devices, digital machines, objects, people, or animals. These interrelated systems are provided with a unique identifier, and they have the ability to transfer the data through a network. In such a type of data transfer, there is no requirement for the interaction between the human to human or between a human to a computer. 

Within this system of the internet of things, the “Thing” mentioned might be anything. It can be a person who has an implant of a heart monitor or an animal with a biochip transponder. The Thing can also be an automobile having some built-in sensors for alerting the driver whenever there are cases of low tire pressure. Also, any other form of objects that are both man-made and natural is assigned an address of internet protocol for transferring data can be considered within the internet of things system. 

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The concept of the IoT has been rapidly used by several industries for efficient operation, a better understanding of the customers for delivering enhanced services to customers, improving the process of making decisions, and increasing the business value.

Importance of Internet of Things

The IoT has helped people live smarter life and led to smarter work lives. People are now able to gain complete control over their life. It has been observed that the IoT’s are being used for automating the homes through the available smart devices. Apart from its use in the home sector, the IoT has proved to be essential in business. Applications of IoT in business provide the employees to look into the working of their system in real-time. This provides the organizations with an idea of how their systems should work. The organization can get insight into the business’s working, the performance of the machines, and the operations of logistics and supply chain. 

Through the application of the IoT in business organizations, the labor cost of the organizations gets reduced. The waste is further cut down, and the service delivery is improved. Therefore, there is a lesser cost required for manufacturing goods and the delivery of the goods. Further, the customer transaction process becomes transparent.

IoT has become one of the most critical forms of Technology in the everyday life of people. It is also expected that the IoT will further pick up its importance as more business organizations will start applying it because the organizations will know that the devices need to be connected in a system for keeping up a competitive environment. 

Benefits of IoT to the organizations

As organizations are shifting towards IoT use, they have started to see the benefits in their businesses. Several benefits are offered by the IoT’s to the organizations. These benefits can be in different sections, such as they can be industry-specific, while some benefits can be seen over multiple industries. 

A few of the benefits that are common to all organizations are:

  • IoT enables organizations to monitor their business processes.
  • The customer experiences are improved through the use of IoT.
  • Through the use of IoTcan save both money and time.
  • Employee productivity can be enhanced.
  • Different business models can be integrated and adapted.
  • Business decisions can be made in a better way.
  • The usage of IoT can generate more revenue. 

The companies are encouraged to rethink how they approach their businesses and provide the organizations with the tools for improving the business strategies. 

IoT seems to be primarily used in the manufacturing industries, utility organizations, and transportation, where the sensor will be used with other IoT devices. Along with these sectors, IoT has also been applied in the agriculture sector, where IoT has benefited the farmers. The sensors collect data on different factors like rainfall, temperature, humidity, soil content, etc. Also, many other factors are there for which data can be collected and then used for automated farming techniques.

Monitoring operations in the infrastructure is also another sector where the IoT can be used. In such cases, the sensors can be used to monitor events within the structural buildings or any changes within them. Observance of the changes can also be carried out in bridges and other infrastructures. Therefore, the use of the IoT brings several benefits, such as saving the cost, time, and improvement in the workflow process as it becomes paperless. 

Businesses for home automation can use the IoT to monitor events occurring within the building’s mechanical systems and electrical systems. Through the use of theIoT, citizens residing in smart cities can reduce energy consumption and waste.

Other industries where IoT plays a beneficial role are in healthcare, retail, finance, and manufacturing. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of the IoT

A few advantages associated with the IoT are:

  • Through IoT, information can be accessed from anywhere with any device and at any time.
  • There is improved communication amongst the devices that are connected.
  • The data packets can be transferred through the connected network that saves money and time.
  • Through the automated task in the organizations, the quality of the services offered by the businesses has improved, thereby reducing the interference or the need for human intervention.

Although the IoT offers many advantages, there are a few disadvantages associated with the application as well. A few disadvantages associated with the IoT are:

  • In the IoT, there is an increase in the number of devices and the connectivity between the devices. As a result, there is more sharing of information between the devices. This might lead to hacking cases as there is a potential of stealing important confidential information from a hacker. Therefore, the chances of hacking increase.
  • With the application of IoT, the data in the organization increases. Therefore, the organization has to deal with the massive amount of generated data. This stands as a challenge as collecting such a large amount of data generated from all the connected devices is not easy.
  • The presence of bugs in any system will corrupt every other connected device in the IoT
  • If the connected devices are from different manufacturers, there might be a compatibility problem between the devices in the IoT

Privacy and security issues 

Several devices (in billions) are connected over the internet, which generates billions of data. The data generated requires its security in some way. Therefore,  IoT privacy and  IoT security have been considered to be of significant concern.

It is not always the hackers that prove to be the threats of the IoT. But, the privacy of the data is a big concern for all the users of the IoT. The companies producing the IoT devices could use the devices to obtain customer information and then sell personal data. 

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Also, in addition to the data leaking, the IoT risks the critical infrastructure that includes electricity, financial services, and transportation. 

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Data is an essential part of any organization. Several machine learning technologies are required to handle the data and control the connectivity of the data generated through the connected devices. If you want to excel in machine learning and want to explore the field of data, then you can check the course Executive PG Programme in Machine Learning & AI offered by upGrad. So, if you are a working professional who dreams of being an expert in machine learning, come and gain the experience of getting trained under experts. More details can be achieved through our website. For any queries, our team can assist you promptly.


Pavan Vadapalli

Blog Author
Director of Engineering @ upGrad. Motivated to leverage technology to solve problems. Seasoned leader for startups and fast moving orgs. Working on solving problems of scale and long term technology strategy.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1What is IoT technology, and how do we define it?

IoT means Internet of Things which connects all the devices in a network. The connected devices then communicate with each other through standard internet protocols.

2 How does an ordinary device become a connected device?

When a chip is built-in, any device or any sensor is fit in the device, the sensor makes these devices get connected to the network of connected devices.

3 What are the components of IoT?

The components of IoT include the connected devices that include the sensors, the network, and the cloud.

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