A top strategic technology trend Gartner Inc. has identified for 2013 is the “Internet of Things” (IoT), a concept that describes how the Internet will expand as physical items such as consumer devices and physical assets are connected to the Internet.
Key IoT elements being embedded in various mobile devices, Gartner reports, include sensors, image recognition technologies, and near field communication (NFC) capability. As a result, mobile no longer refers only to the use of cell phones or tablets.
“Cellular technology is being embedded in many new types of devices, including pharmaceutical containers and automobiles,” Gartner reports.
“Smartphones and other intelligent devices don’t just use the cellular network. They communicate via NFC, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi to a wide range of devices and peripherals, such as wristwatch displays, health-care sensors, smart posters, and home entertainment systems.”
The IoT will enable a range of new applications and services—while raising new challenges for traditional companies.