Internet of Things (IOT) seems to be the hottest buzz word these days?  But WTF is it really?  Seems like it includes so many different things.   So for all of you Sound of Music fans, here are a few of my favorite Internet of Things…  (Pun Intended).

According to IMS Research, the wearables market is poised to grow from 14 million devices shipped in 2011 to as many as 171 million units shipped by 2016. In a more recent estimate, ABI Research pegs the wearables market at 485 million annual device shipments by 2018.

I try to bucket all of these example products into meaningful categories.  This is by no means an exhaustive list.  New and exciting connected things pop up EVERY DAY it seems.   But the take-away should be that all these products are soon going to be spilling over across categories and permeating every part of our lives…

 
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Smart Appliances:
  • CES was froth with appliances from LG, Samsung and others such as smart refrigerators with an 8 inch touch display featuring Picasa, Twitter, WeatherBug, AP News and Evernote integration.
  • With LG’s new Smart Washer, you’ll longer need to hang around until the washing cycle completes. Via LG’s smartphone app, you can monitor the status of your wash and remotely control the machine’s cycles via voice commands. Users can also access and adjust settings via an LG Smart TV as well as directly from the appliance’s LCD panel. Pop-up messages appear on the user’s phone when a laundry cycle finishes. 
  • Samsung’s smart  washer and dryer can be remotely controlled with an Android app to start and stop the machine, and control factors like temperature. Users can even get notifications when a load is finished.
  • Smart TVs  can access the internet and inetract with tablets and smartphones nearby.  So its easy to enable some multiscreen experiences where you sling your media from your phone to your TV.
  • MilkMaid smart milk jug allows users to access the milk jug remotely from a smartphone and  can detect if your milk is spoiled, or how soon it may spoil, using pH sensors. A weight sensor in the base alerts you to how much milk remains, and a temperature sensor warns when milk is left out of the fridge for too long.  – http://www.quirky.com/products/327-The-Milkmaid-smart-milk-jug%20
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Lighting & Home Automation:

  • Smart lights like Philips Hue can be controlled with the accompanying iPhone or Android app to switch them on and off remotely, set timers, and change mood lighting. http://www.meethue.com/en-US
  • With WeMo switches, you can control your TVs, lamps, stereos and other appliances through your home Wifi. The free iOS app lets you set schedules for appliances and electronics and control them in-home or remotely. http://www.belkin.com/us/wemo
  • With KwikSet Door Locks you can lock and unlock your doors remotely from any iPhone or Android and you can tell exactly who is coming and going.  It allows you to monitor who is coming and going from your home remotely.  http://www.kwikset.com/Electronics/Homeowners/RemoteAccess.aspx
  • Lowes Iris is home automation for the masses. Lowes has created a system that allows wireless networking, monitoring, and communication between all of the systems in our home: security, comfort, lighting, electrical, doors/windows, appliances and more. Lowe’s Iris Smart Kit lets users remotely monitor and manage their home.. You can keep tabs on energy costs, as well as set up automtion rules from their cloud service to control everything from home appliances to lawn sprinklers. The kit even lets you open and close Fido’s pet door. http://www.lowes.com/cd_Iris_239939199_

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Home Security & Monitoring
  • AT&T’s Digital Life offers customers an integrated solution for wireless home automation and security. At the heart of Digital Life is 24/7 home security, which customers will be able to customize to suit their needs. This includes security cameras, sensors placed throughout the home, and professional monitoring provided through AT&T. Thw wireless connectivity and remote access afforded enables  customers to quickly and easily view live feeds of their home from mobile devices.
  • Nest thermostat can help you save big on your heating and cooling bills. With its built-in Wi-Fi connection, the Nest can be controlled remotely via your iOS or Android smartphone ortablet. You can customize several features, including setting multiple home/away schedules for precise temperatures by day of the week and time of day. Not coming home as planned? Just tweak the temperature from wherever you are.  The Nest learning thermostat is packed with an array of sensors to detect activity, light, humidity, and temperature. With smart algorithms and processing power, Nest builds patterns by tracking every time users in a household manually adjust the temperature. Over time Nest can automatically adjust temperatures to your liking based on your past adjustments and activities at home so you don’t have to control it manually as often. http://www.nest.com
  • Netatmo is a personal weather station  and air quality monitor . With the iPhone or Android app, users can view information on indoor air quality, such as the level of carbon dioxide and humidity in the room, and the app suggests ideal times to ventilate. http://www.netatmo.com/en-US/site
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Fun and Random Connected Things
 
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Mobile Health
  • Jawbone Up wristband and mobile app is a great example of packaging collected data to deliver useful insights to users. Jawbone mobile app visualizes data collected by the wristband into easy-to-understand infographics which helps users discover the connection between the raw numbers and their habits. Over time users can get a better understanding of their daily activities, sleeping patterns, eating habits and see how small things like walking the dog or eating 300 fewer calories for lunch can help users meet their health goals.
  • Withings Scale for weight tracking with the  Withings Health Mate app automatically tracks accurate weight, body fat and BMI readings on your iPhone or iPad with each new reading automatically uploaded to your personal weight chart. The Withings scale lets you sync either via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, and it will individually keep tabs on multiple household users.
  • Withings Baby Companion app tracks a baby’s weight and compares it to others the same age.
  • LUMOback for improving your posture is a device worn around the waist that connects to an iPhone app that notifies users when they’re slumping, and track their posture over time.
  • Nike+ FuelBand and Larklife and Fitbit One track calories burned, distance traveled or steps taken to help you improve your level of activity, improve your sleep, and general health habits by quantifying your life.
  • Smartwatches like Pebble link up with a smartphone. But instead of collecting information, like most fitness bands, watches will display it.