It's been nearly a decade since the smart home introduced voice commands. Today, there are thousands of smart home devices, apps, services, skills and ways to add the internet to every inch of your home. In 2021, we saw small but significant updates to the smart home that set the stage for a big 2022. Here's what the next year in smart home tech could bring. Every year, we look forward to new products from major smart home brands and exciting new ideas from startups, too.
AI stocks may be excellent long-term investments. The global artificial intelligence market is on track to hit more than $554 billion in total revenue by 2024, according to market researcher IDC. AI, automation and robotics are disrupting virtually every major industry. From machine learning to the "internet of things," autonomous vehicles, virtual assistants and smart home appliances, companies that aren't embracing AI and incorporating it into their business models risk going obsolete. Countless companies stand to benefit from AI, but a handful of companies have business models focused specifically on automation.
For over a decade we have witnessed a proliferation of internet-connected devices. Nowadays, the number of internet-connected devices is estimated to be around 25 billion. Most of these are mainstream consumer devices that enable human communications and facilitate human-machine interactions. There is also a growing number of devices that are deployed in industrial environments to enable the collection of digital data about operational performance such as efficiency and quality. By analyzing this data, industrial enterprises derive insights on how to automate and optimize their business processes. In this direction, devices, and smart objects with actuation capabilities such as robots, drones, smart sensors, and automated guided vehicles can be used to reduce human errors, increase automation, and improve the quality and reduce the cost of industrial operations.
The Internet of things (IoT) is taking the world by storm, thanks to the proliferation of sensors and actuators embedded in everyday things, coupled with the wide availability of high-speed Internet50 and evolution of the 5th-generation (5G) networks.34 IoT devices are increasingly supplying information about the physical environment (for example, infrastructure, assets, homes, and cars). The advent of IoT is enabling not only the connection and integration of devices that monitor physical world phenomena (for example, temperature, pollution, energy consumption, human activities, and movement), but also data-driven and AI-augmented intelligence. At all levels, synergies from advances in IoT, data analytics, and artificial intelligence (AI) are firmly recognized as strategic priorities for digital transformation.10,41,50 IoT poses two key challenges:36 Communication with things and management of things.41 The service paradigm is a key mechanism to overcome these challenges by transforming IoT devices into IoT services, where they will be treated as first-class objects through the prism of services.9 In a nutshell, services are at a higher level of abstraction than data. Services descriptions consist of two parts: functional and non-functional, such as, Quality of Service (QoS) attributes.27 Services often transform data into an actionable knowledge or achieve physical state changes in the operating context.9 As a result, the service paradigm is the perfect basis for understanding the transformation of data into actionable knowledge, that is, making it useful. Despite the increasing uptake of IoT services, most organizations have not yet mastered the requisite knowledge, skills, or understanding to craft a successful IoT strategy.
Throughout the centuries, humans have made tremendous leaps forward in the way we build, interact, and communicate with each other and the world. More recently, we've shifted self-execute industrialization to the age of information. We now have a seemingly unlimited amount of knowledge available at our fingertips. Technological advances are now accelerating faster than ever before. As technology continues to evolve, we can expect it to impact all aspects of our lives and society as a whole.