In this blog post, we look at smart devices and their uses, and then we will come a little closer to a new and large area, for which we are very interested in Solutions that integrate the app with hardware.
Amazon’s new product Echo Dot, or just Alexa, which most of the people call her. Alexa can accept orders and perform them.
For example, she can put an alarm clock, tell about the weather, play music through Spotify and provide information about people, places, and traffic. In addition, she can control other devices on the home network - for example. the intelligent LIFX bulbs.
In short, Alexa relies on Apple's help function, Siri, but contains more aspects and greater application possibilities.
21st Century Internet of Things
Alexa is part of what we call the Internet of Things (IoT) in the tech industry. Internet of Things is really an older term, dating back to the 1990s, but it is still super relevant - maybe now more than ever.
In short, Internet of Things makes everyday electronic devices intelligent by collecting information online or on the network, such as speech recognition, and processes and translates the following information into useful knowledge that can help users.
There are infinite possibilities for transforming a device into the Internet of Things, and we are increasingly seeing an interest in doing this. The different devices usually use WiFi, Bluetooth, or RFID readers to collect and deliver data from and to the user. It also means, in a developer perspective, that it makes it possible to develop an app that controls them.
Already now, everything from smoke alarms, thermostats, bathing weights and cookware to speakers and surveillance systems can be intelligent and make life easier for the users.
An example of a smart device is Samsung's Air Pump Smart 9. With the help of an app that receives and sends information to the built-in wi-fi in the heat pump, you can control the heat and, for example, start the heat pump when you drive home from work.
Both Apple and Google have also launched smart devices that can help make every day much easier for users.
As the possibilities for integration between apps and hardware are getting bigger, the ideas are also multiplied and we are looking forward to this development.
Although smart devices can help users in everyday life, there are also some challenges and issues that we will need to consider. Privacy versus surveillance is, for example, one of the dilemmas that arise when dealing with smart devices. Network security is another area that can be problematic.
To what extent does Alexa participate in listening at home when it's constantly being online and ready to receive orders? If the answer to it is "all the time," Alexa can help solve a murder case for example.
And this is precisely where the dilemma arises: Should we put our privacy on standby if it can solve a murder?
Despite all the challenges of smart devices, we - tech nerds, as we are now - see great benefits to making life a little easier, smarter, and funnier with intelligent devices.
In our view, we should utilize and further develop the technical possibilities that exist. Why not be at the forefront of development and thus help to set the standard?