IoT (Internet of Things) is a network of physical devices each able to communicate with the other using the existing internet channel. The devices “Things” are common everyday devices and equipment, including smartphones, wearables, vehicles, and instruments.
Each device in the network is uniquely identifiable and able to exchange data with over devices over IP. Devices are embedded with software and connectivity features to enable this communication.
IoT devices have a flexible range of both wired and wireless connectivity options. Wireless connectivity medium can be categorized into short-range, medium-range and long-range. Short-range connectivity is most common, IoT devices rarely need to connect to long-range.
Wired IoT devices use Ethernet, coaxial or power communication cables.
Short-range: This includes connectivity methods that use ISM band frequencies of 4.33GHz, 5GHz, and 2.4Ghz. Such as:
- Light Fidelity (Li-Fi)
- Near field communication
- QR codes and barcodes
- Wi-Fi direct
- Z Wave
Medium-range: For medium range, the LTE Advanced network is almost exclusively preferred for its low latency, high data rates, and extended range. Mid-range variants of Wi-Fi such as HaLow are also used.
Long-range: LPWAN (Low-power wide-area networking), though it transmits at low data rates, LPWAN is ideal for long distance IoT transmissions for its economic power consumption and cost of transmission.
Long-range satellites such as VSAT transmitting narrowband and broadband are also used.
IoT is quickly gaining popularity in several businesses, commercial, and industrial fields. With time we expect to see standards and improved connectivity of IoT Things.Author: George Hardesty