The IoT Is At The Center Of Disruptive Technologies

Imagine waking up in the year 2030. While getting ready for work, your smart home heats up some coffee and picks an outfit to match the formality of a meeting on your calendar later that day. An electric and autonomous vehicle stops outside your house with the temperature set to your preferred 70 degrees and the stereo playing your morning playlist. The car zips you to work with breathtaking speed while you prepare for the day’s meetings. Before heading upstairs to your office, you grab breakfast at a local café and walk out without ever reaching for a wallet or phone.

The work day goes by smoothly, but in the afternoon, you’re reminded by your smart assistant that it’s your sister’s birthday tomorrow and that you have a doctor’s appointment later in the evening. The virtual assistant suggests a few gifts based on your prior purchasing habits, popular items, and the profile it has of your sister. Choosing your favorite option, you instruct the present to be delivered via drone and arrive exactly as she’s leaving her apartment tomorrow at 8:00 AM.

On your way home, you stop by your company’s factory to review a recent customer order. Your employer manufactures key components for the automotive, chemical, and energy industries. The factory is run by a network of robots and a team of engineers that oversee operations. Today, the factory is building customized command and control systems for a renewable energy provider will help the customer automate energy grid operations, unlock new transmission efficiencies and reduce maintenance costs. The plant manager informs you that the factory’s robots identified some irregularities in a key component and were able to self-correct the problem. The products will still be ready on time, allowing you to breathe a sigh of relief.

Once you make it home, you check into your doctor’s appointment from your living room couch and complete the session via a telehealth terminal. The doctor asks a few questions, examines data sent to her from your wearable health monitor and confirms that your health is in good condition. Your wrist has been hurting a bit recently though, so she sends a file to your 3D printer to build a custom wrist support that you will wear for the next few weeks until the follow-up appointment.

It’s now dinner time, and your refrigerator suggests a low-carb vegetable soup, based on the age of the produce in the vegetable drawer and your calorie burn that day. Afterwards, you help your kids with their homework: completing a level in an educational, virtual reality adventure game set in medieval Europe, designed to teach them math and history. After an hour or so, the level is complete, so you put your kids to bed and head to your bedroom. The shades are down, the lights already dimmed to match your circadian rhythm, and the temperature is set to 66. Your smart assistant lets you know that tomorrow is less busy, and you can sleep in an extra 15 minutes.

The IoT: A theme of themes

While elements of this anecdote are speculative, it illustrates several profound technological advancements that are currently under development and expected to transform our work and everyday lives, including robotics, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, smart home devices, wearables, mobile payments, and virtual reality.

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