Fiber optics applications to Internet of things

Those days you didn't have breakfast at home because you forgot to buy eggs are in the past. Nowadays your refrigerator sends you an alert telling you you are running out of products. And that's possible thanks to the Internet of Things. 

The Internet of Things has many years being a hot topic, but what exactly is it?

It can be defined as a future in which everyday objects will be connected to Internet and will be able to communicate with each other.  Jacob Morgan describes The Internet of Things on Forbes as “the concept of basically connecting any device with an on and off switch to the Internet (and/or to each other). This includes everything from cell phones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, lamps, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of.”

And yes, it is going to impact the way you live and the way you work. Ericcson estimates 50 billion devices will be connected to Internet by 2020, while Gartner predicts there will be roughly 500 networked devices in a typical family house.

Cars, refrigerators, lamps, clocks, phones and wearables devices will be embedded with sensors that will make them possible to gain intelligence and the ability to communicate with other objects and with people. So, in the future the communication will be machine-to-machine (M2M), machine-to-person (M2P) and person-to-person (P2P).

So your car is going to be able to alert you if the tire pressure is low and tell you places you can go to solve that problem. Or your clock will tell your coffee maker to start making that delicious beverage because is almost time for you to wake up. Sounds cool, right?

And how exactly is the Internet of Thing related with optical fiber?

When all your gadgets and devices are connected and communicate with each other, data transmission needs to be fast, and there is no other transmission media able to reach higher speeds than optical fiber. Therefore, the Internet of things needs optical fiber broadband to reach wirelessly 100Gpsb speeds and reproducing 4K videos in just seconds.

Billions of devices connected with each other put a big issue on the spotlight: security. Will anybody be able to hack your phone and have access to your house? Is it going to bring more security and privacy threats? It probably will. But then again, optical fiber networks will be the solution because they are the most secure ones as it is really hard to hack them without being detected.

Also, with fiber there aren’t going to be interference issues as it is immune to electromagnetic currents and can be installed basically everywhere, from underwater to high-temperature places.

As Kyle Hollifield, senior vice president at Magellan Advisors, said at CES 2016 FTTH networks needs to be prepared for the added traffic, because network capacity will be critical for the success of smart cities and homes when everything is connected with everything.

January 27, 2016 by
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