Chapter

Enabling Things to Talk

pp 1-10

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Date:

Introduction to the Internet of Things

  • Thorsten KrampAffiliated withIBM Research Email author 
  • , Rob van KranenburgAffiliated withInternet of People Ltd.
  • , Sebastian LangeAffiliated withDeloitte & Touche GmbH

Abstract

The expression “Internet of Things” (IoT), coined back in 1999 by Kevin Ashton, the British technology pioneer who cofounded the Auto-ID Center at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is becoming more and more mainstream. In opening the IoT Week 2013 with a pre-recorded video message, Ashton insisted on the realization that IoT is here now; it is not the future but the present. While Gartner identifies IoT as one of the top ten strategic technology trends, Cisco forecasts 50 billion devices connected by 2020, a potential market in excess of $14 trillion, and also claims that IoT is actually already here. Similarly, it is not only companies with a technological focus, such as Ericsson, Bosch or Siemens that use IoT to advertise their cutting edge technologies – media companies such as the BBC are conducting research activities and have plans for IoT deployment. In short, we are currently on the verge of witnessing the emergence of a “mega-market”, where markets such as home and building automation, electricity generation and distribution, logistics, automotive, as well as telecommunications and information technology will steadily converge. As yet, we do not know the consequences of connecting all of these smart objects (smart meter, e-vehicle, cargo container, fridge etc.) to the Internet.