Meaning of Internet of Things

In the Internet of Things, “smart” devices network with the Internet and can take on tasks independently. Several devices can be linked to one another via a network and can communicate with one another as well as with the Internet.

  • The Internet of Things is also called the Internet of Things and is abbreviated to IoT.
  • It describes the connection of different devices to the Internet.
  • These internet-enabled devices can sometimes perform tasks independently.

Definition of the Internet of Things

There are several definitions for the Internet of Things (IoT). Kevin Ashton was the first to coined the term; that was in 1999. Basically, the term refers to autonomous devices, objects and objects that are part of a network. This can be a closed network, but the devices are often connected to the Internet and can be controlled from the Internet via their own IP address. This means that you can, for example, start a coffee machine via an app on the way home.

If devices can communicate with each other within their network, they are called M2M communication (machine-to-machine). In many situations the objects can act independently and react to different situations. Human intervention is often hardly necessary so that the devices can perform their assigned task.

Examples of the Internet of Things

The areas of application for the Internet of Things are very diverse. Practically every object can be linked to the internet. Some examples of devices that can act independently:

  • In the ” Smart Home” you can link several household items with one another. For example, homeowners can control them remotely. However, the objects also take on tasks independently, such as the printer, who independently orders new printer cartridges online when his supply is low.
  • Thanks to current traffic reports, navigation systems in the car have known for a long time whether there is a traffic jam on the route and suggest alternative routes. Autonomous cars could go one step further and decide completely independently to drive a different route.
  • In medicine, intelligent implants and prostheses can prevent complications or even save lives: by collecting data and monitoring the patient’s condition. In this way, an artificial hip joint can recognize whether it is loosening and a new operation is necessary – even before complications and pain occur.
  • Machines in industry are increasingly working independently. They know what their job is and carry it out. With the help of sensors, they adjust to each work piece and independently calculate what needs to be done. If there are any malfunctions or if components are worn, they can also perceive this and report it in good time.

Advantages and disadvantages of the IoT

Networked devices are a support in many areas of daily life. However, in order for the objects and machines to act, they need a lot of information. The handling and collection of a lot of – sometimes personal – information and data is a major criticism of the Internet of Things.


Abbreviated as IOT by abbreviationfinder, the Internet of Things and the increasing networking and independence of various devices and objects mean, above all, that work is made easier and processes are accelerated. In everyday life, smart devices ensure more comfort and convenience as well as time savings. But they can also bring economic benefits or even save lives in industry and medicine.


Despite all the advantages and fascinating possibilities of the Internet of Things, consumers should always exercise caution. When a device is connected to the Internet, it can send a lot of data on the one hand and there is also the possibility that unauthorized persons can hack the device. The idea of ​​a hacked household appliance seems absurd and not frightening to many. But there have already been cases in which hackers have taken control of baby monitors and corresponding surveillance cameras.

Safe on the move in the Internet of Things

The risk in the Internet of Things is often that users do not notice what data the device is processing and sending. All of this data can theoretically be accessed by criminals. Consumers should therefore keep an eye on the protection of their data and be aware of whether a device collects information and which information. Regular security updates ensure that the smart devices offer less surface for attack.


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