Technology has become vital in maintaining effective organizational operations in every firm. Many organizations have adopted the Internet of Things (IoT) to enhance communication between various devices and the cloud. The technology is among the essential technologies used in the twenty-first century. IoT has an interesting development history, and it has impacted how people live and interact. Moreover, several major companies, such as Airbus, have adapted the technology for operations efficiency. Additionally, the Covid-19 pandemic impacted IoT significantly. This paper evaluates various IoT aspects, including; its history and impact on people and companies like Airbus, and assesses the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the technology.
IoT Definition and History
IoT is a communication enhancer between various devices. The technology can be described as a physical objects network, with devices embedded with software, sensors, and other technologies, facilitating data exchange between systems and devices over the internet (Turban et al., 2018). IoT existed before its official institution in 1999. A glimpse of IoT in the mid-1980s was a machine from the Coca-Cola Company at Carnegie Mellon University. Software engineers used the technology to verify drink accessibility and temperature. However, the technology became rampant in 1999 when Kevin Ashton instituted it. Ashton, who was working at Proctor and Gamble in the supply chain advancement department, invented the technology when trying to convince his company’s leadership of an innovation called Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) (Dhinakaran, 2019). Ashton created a solid foundation of IoT, which has advanced to date.
IoT gained familiarity in the 2000s. Companies like Google incorporated technology to create better products in late 2010. Additionally, the Chinese government incorporated the technology in its five-year development plan. Over time, IoT became an agenda in big internet gatherings, such as Europe’s LeWeb, and magazines like Forbes, Wiring, and Fast Company. Reports at the time indicated that IoT would be a market worth over eight trillion dollars by 2020, an aspect ascertained by the multiple corporations embracing the technology. IoT is still relatively new, but organizations and society are embracing technology more and more every day (Dhinakaran, 2019). IoT applications’ potential is only limited by human imagination, and the technology’s future is bright.
IoT impact on People’s Lives
IoT can have a potential impact on how people live. IoT has the potential to impact people’s lives in various aspects, such as; healthcare, agriculture, and wearable technology, among other benefits. The healthcare industry can benefit from the technology by enhancing patient care and improving patients’ quality of life (Kumar et al., 2017). The goal can be achieved by embedding actuators and sensors in patients’ medicine for tracking and monitoring. Additionally, IoT improves patients’ lives at reduced costs since doctors can perform non-invasive assessments on their patients. Secondly, IoT has a potential impact on how people do agriculture. The global population has increased over time, and traditional methods of agriculture cannot satisfy society’s food needs. IoT has created the opportunity for agricultural modernization, an essential aspect of creating food security. For instance, the greenhouse monitoring system facilitates scientific management methods implementation, enabling increased production and crop disaster prevention (Kumar et al., 2017). Therefore, people have access to enough healthy foods.
IoT has impacted people’s lives through wearable technology. Most wearable products have evolved, offering better integrations and designs compatible with different systems. Therefore, People can track various patterns in their lives, such as; sleeping patterns, workouts progress, and blood pressure, among others. Moreover, wearable devices can connect one to social media accounts and track information, which helps improve an individual’s life. Last but not least, IoT helps in grocery monitoring. Living a good life has become expensive, and people are often busy doing one thing or another to keep up with changes. As a result, groceries and other items may deplete unknowingly; hence the importance of an automated monitoring system, a product of IoT technology (Dian et al., 2020; Salah & Khan, 2019). The highlighted examples depict IoT’s potential impact on people’s lives.
IoT’s Benefits on Airbus
Airbus is one of the firms which have significantly benefited from incorporating IoT in its operational processes. The firm is one of the biggest multinational European aerospace corporations. Additionally, Airbus is a market leader in aerospace products designing and manufacturing (Airbus, n.d). Communication and data exchange are essential aspects in a firm such as; Airbus, with a high magnitude of operations and employees. Therefore incorporating IoT has resulted in operations costs reduction and enhanced efficiency, mobility, and consumer satisfaction.
Airbus has incorporated and benefited from IoT in several ways. The company’s aircraft technicians are equipped with wearable technology and smart tools, such as; virtual-reality glasses, which are internet-connected (Internet of Business, n.d). The machinery promotes simplicity, productivity, traceability, and quality across various tasks within the company. Examples of the tasks made easier by the IoT technology include; measuring, drilling, data logging, and clamping. Additionally, National Instruments (NI) and Airbus have combined efforts in developing hardware and software platforms that enable device coordination and control. For instance, image processing and acquisition through smart glasses involves data transfer to a clamping tool that understands an operator’s task requirements. The clamping tool, which is a smart technology, adjusts the collected information to fit an operator’s request, and the device stores the task’s results in a central database (Internet of Business, n.d). Therefore, IoT has positively impacted Airbus operations.
The Pandemic’s Impact on IoT
The pandemic promoted the need for IoT. Everything changed during the Covid-19 pandemic, forcing individuals and corporations to formulate survival strategies. Firstly, business stakeholders learned to meet and work virtually through IoT, incorporating the technology in their firms (Ghaleb et al., 2021). Secondly, IoT has become a vital incorporation in the healthcare sector globally. For instance, health workers applied IoT in performing contact tracing, which was essential in reducing the spread. IoT has sensors that can capture diverse volumes of granular data. The data can then be directed through a cloud using cellular routers to centralized servers, which would be analyzed to identify risk exposures and related Covid-19 factors. Moreover, patients could receive necessary medical advice without visiting hospitals through telemedicine. Thirdly, the pandemic forced people to work from home, and IoT was the perfect solution since most forms of Wi-Fi cannot meet corporate standards. IoT provides a secure and reliable cellular connection that is centrally managed. Furthermore, emergency service and traffic departments incorporated the technology to enable first responders to communicate and help infected patients and high-exposure communities (Ghaleb et al., 2021). Ultimately, the Covid-19 pandemic opened corporations’ and societies’ minds toward the need for IoT technology.
IoT is a technology that has benefited corporations and society in the past and present and has a high chance of being among the technologies that will dominate the future. The technology has evolved since the 1990s to become an essential component in today’s data exchange operations. Moreover, the technology has simplified people’s lives in various ways, including their interactions, farming methods, and healthcare patterns. Though relatively new, the pandemic significantly impacted the technology, with many people needing to interact without physical interactions. Therefore, IoT is essential to todays and future business frameworks.
Airbus. (n.d). Who We Are. Retrieved January 4, 2022, from Airbus: https://www.airbus.com/en/who-we-are#:~:text=Airbus%20is%20a%20global%20pioneer,customers%20on%20a%20worldwide%20scale.
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