Although the idea of the Internet of Things (IoT) has been around for a long time, the widespread adoption of tablets and smartphones is making it an exciting reality, leading to a wave of new solutions for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). At Scisbo, we’re particularly enthused about monitoring devices that use apps. Now that tablets have risen in popularity, both the cost and the learning curve of introducing new applications have been reduced. Gartner recently estimated that the Internet of Things will reach 26 billion connected devices by 2020, a thirty-fold increase over today.
Already, medical doctors are able to monitor patients' health with heartbeat monitors, sleep monitors, and pedometers that connect to the cloud via a smartphone and send an alert when there’s a problem. People with chronic conditions such as diabetes can use a smartphone to monitor their blood sugar, making fewer trips to the clinic.
Smartphone docks in cars are valuable for more than just phone calls and entertainment. Now, they can be used for monitoring and diagnostics for the car itself or to track driving patterns for pay-as-you-drive insurance programs. By using such telematics programs, insurance discounts of up to 40% on commercial fleets are now possible through verifiable safe driving practices.
Many SMBs reduce the energy use in commercial buildings by installing intelligent thermostats and heating controllers that can be programmed and monitored with apps. Additionally, businesses can improve building security with movement detector webcams that send alerts and pictures when they’re triggered—either with a SIM card that connects to a mobile network or via Wi-Fi to the building's broadband—allowing full motion video to be stored in the cloud. Businesses can even control door locks from a smartphone to give the plumber access while away or use an app to set up a varied schedule to turn lights on and off to deter burglars.
In short, for the small business owner, using an app to provide reports on the heating bill or installing self-monitored security cameras in vulnerable locations—such as storage facilities and car garages—can increase peace of mind without breaking the bank. Contact Scisbo to learn about how fixed wireless and mobility management services can be utilized to provide access to and also enhance these types of applications.