IOT and Blockchain – a match made in heaven?

Background of metallic spheres network
Aerial view of the London city from the airplane

The Internet of Things (IoT) was a phrase coined to explain a network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other such items enabled to communicate and connect with each other.

What is the Internet of Things (IoT)?

The Internet of Things was a phrase coined to explain a network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other such items enabled to communicate and connect with each other. This electronic enhancement can be software, sensors, actuators or any other device that allows an object to collect, transmit and receive data.

This allows previous unconnected devices to create data networks between themselves helping management and understanding of completely new networks of data transmission outside of traditional computers or smartphones.

It’s predicted that the growth of the Internet of Things will grow to 30 billion compatible devices, applications, vehicles, sensors appliances and more. All this connectivity to the internet is expected to be worth $7.1 trillion. Connectivity to things has never been worth so much but what’s the point?

That was then… this is now.

Back in the 1980’s one of the first IoT devices was a coke drinks machine that could monitor its inventory levels. Fast forward a couple of decades and we have devices that can control your home temperature, your lights at home, stock controlled business inventory, smart controlled vehicles and transportation systems. The world of IoT is coming at us and coming fast. The advantages of understanding this wealth of data, extrapolating it and learning from it will transform both individuals, societies and businesses alike.

It’s fantastic to have such connectivity in a future age but there can be many inherent problems with all of this. While having your fridge tell you that food supplies are low, it wouldn’t be able to do much else as whilst it is connected to the Internet, it still doesn’t remain connected to other systems.

IoT devices are only an application layer that communicates data but doesn’t necessarily use (or understand) the data.

This is where Blockchain can come into play and revolutionize IoT and bring it to a whole new level.

Imagine the following scenario: your fridge has a low (inventory) warning. Currently, it might send you an alert on your phone but can’t do much else. With further integration, it’s possible the fridge can know the above, order fresh produce and  have it delivered to your door – in some cases even put into your fridge! Going beyond with blockchain,  you can then start to find out the source of the products in your fridge. When was that yoghurt made? Where did the milk come from? What did the cows eat? All this information can be stored on the blockchain and suddenly you start to develop a massive network of connected systems like never before.

Now imagine the useful possibilities.

All this information can be stored on the blockchain and suddenly you start to develop a massive network of connected systems like never before.

It’s all about your fridge

The fridge, a staple consumer device, now has massive potential.

Imagine integrating an Artificial Intelligence (AI machine learning) system that can start to understand and interpret the data that IoT devices are creating. In our fridge example, it might understand that you only really eat that yoghurt on a Tuesday morning. On a larger scale, it could start to bring together all the data from IoT devices and build up a picture of how to increase the efficiency in your shopping habits.

What is true of your humble fridge is also true for businesses, transportation systems, manufacturing and a whole world of other equally as impressive applications. Blockchain middleware allows easier integration of all of these systems without having to replace them, ensuring that the myriad of these devices transmit data that stays integrated and secure.

Data security

By 2021 there will be 850 zettabytes of data created (up from 220 in 2016). One ZB is one trillion gigabytes. That’s an unimaginable amount of data. Do you want your fridge to tell the supermarket that the yoghurt you forgot to eat this morning will expire today? This is a simple example but what if it’s more personal data being transmitted across all these devices? With so many recent examples of data breaches, how can you hope to control and keep data safe?

Blockchain gives an unprecedented technological lead in keeping data safe.

Omnitude is creating a system called Omnitude ID. – The aim is to let the user control their own data. This is known as self -sovereign control. But how might this work on a system of scale like we’ve been talking about though? It’s simple… the user can select what other devices and integrations are compatible with each other.

Currently IoT devices might be connected to the Internet, but with a lack of ability to translate between seperate proprietorial devices with their own hardware and software, they remain isolated and thus less useful.

Middleware can solve this complex problem in a secure and cost-effective way.

Blockchain gives an unprecedented technological lead in keeping data safe.

Data control

Selecting what devices and integrations have access to your data allows users control over this data. Empowering both user and organisation alike, this data lake also doesn’t need to be locally stored. This results in more efficient systems, that can inherit the benefits of item tracking, manufacture state etc. With an immediate ability to scale up and down systems to adapt to the intermittent pulse of data flows.

From an individual and business perspective, it makes perfect sense. Rather than having (and paying for ) several systems, you start to work from existing systems cutting down effort and costs separate benefiting from the advantages of distributed ledger technology.

Suddenly the dynamic of a whole generation of systems change.  A user can now use their data to control how an IoT device interacts.

Blockchain and IoT are huge growing markets (with unimaginable prospects) that are not going away and are only going to be getting bigger.

In a modern age, two questions come up – 1) How can I connect this and 2) How can I control the data?

Omnitude aims to ensure that systems are compatible, ready with the power of IoT and blockchain being leveraged together to create never before seen potential.

Talk to us today to find out how we can help change your world.

Get the latest thinking straight to your inbox
Omnitude's insights give you the latest blockchain tech news hot off the press.

Similar Articles