Thursday, 17 November 2016

‘Alexa, make me comfortable’: How the Internet of Things is hitting home

Most consumers don’t know what “the Internet of Things” means, and People Power’s David Moss thinks he knows why.

“Before you can experience what an Internet of Things is, you actually first have to go out and buy an internet-connected thing,” he said Wednesday night at Town Hall Seattle, during an MIT Enterprise Forum presentation about intelligent homes. “And why would you go buy an internet-connecting thing if you don’t know what value it can add to your life?”

To capitalize on the Internet of Things, or IoT, People Power came up with a free app called Presence, which turns a spare smartphone or tablet into a Wi-Fi home security camera.

Moss said he was amazed to discover that the app was being used for much more than home security.

“We had created a new thing, but I soon found out that the Internet of Things is actually not just about things,” Moss said. “While I was enamored with how cool it was to check in on my house from anywhere in the world, the stories that we were getting from our users were really about how they were connecting with other people, and their pets. The thing they had, this app, was just a way to connect with what mattered most to them.”

The way Moss sees it, calling the technology the “Internet of Things” doesn’t describe its true power. “I personally prefer the term ‘ambient computing,'” he said.

And however you call it, the technology is on track to become much more powerful, thanks to cloud computing – which provides the “brains” for the Internet of Things – as well as the social dimension.

See more: