Part 1: How far has 2020 let different technologies grow?
There’s been a number of interesting advancements in different computing and technology trends in the past 11 months, and if we’re going on all the promises made for the near future, there’s about to be exponentially more leaps of faith down the line.
The niche joys of VR and Augmented Reality.
The applications of Virtual reality in video gaming are already well known and steadily growing, however it still retains novelty status in the working world. In the majority of situations, a headset is used that encompasses the user’s vision and hearing to provide an immersive experience, allowing the user to put themselves in different simulations, gaming or otherwise. In theory, VR could be used in business pursuits to better relay data to the user, although that form of application is limited.
Augmented Reality (AR) however, being somewhat less immersive than VR, utilises devices to present information between a user and the surrounding physical environment, whilst allowing users to retain a relatively normal view of their surroundings, much like having a Heads Up Display (HUD).
That being said, AR is remarkably more complex than VR with back-end technologies. This is because it is necessary to rapidly analyse the surrounding environment by using data transmission via network management, image recognition, and an information database being displayed, all being continually updated and presented in real time.
What’s happening with 5G?
The technological advantages offered by 5G, including but not limited to more intelligent consumption of power, lower latency issues and relatively higher device density and network slicing capabilities, meet much of the criteria for a new generation of telecommunication.
Some of the many possible benefits of 5G, for example, includes vastly more comprehensive data storage and computing capabilities for those such as Amazon Web Services, for their developers like in the San Francisco Bay area and Boston with their new AWS Wavelength service on Verizon’s 5G network.
One particular area of growth within the next several years will most definitely be the application of 5G networks to support IoT projects. 5G offers the incredible ability to fit, within say a square kilometre, along the lines of one million devices, meaning it would be entirely possible to set up and connect a large number of sensors in a reasonably small area, thereby making large-scale and expansive industrial IoT deployments far more likely and realistic.
Is the Internet of Things (IoT) taking over?
Nowadays with the large scale distribution of low cost computer chips and wireless networks being commonplace in most households, the ability to turn anything from some headphones to a commercial plane, into a part of the IoT, has become easier and more tangible. This would mean that connecting all these objects and in turn, adding on sensors to them would thereby add a new level of digital intelligence to a device that would be otherwise “dumb”, which in turn would enable them to interface and communicate real-time data across a plethora of other devices without even involving an actual human being.
However, at the top of the list in terms of issues with IoT is security. In most cases these sensors are collecting large amounts tremendously sensitive data. A number of researchers have deduced that as many as 100,000 webcams that could most certainly be hacked with ease. Alongside this, select internet-connected smartwatches used by children have been discovered to contain security vulnerabilities that would permit hackers to determine and track the wearer’s location, be able to eavesdrop in on conversations and potentially even communicate with the users.
It is important to remember that as the number of connected devices continues to grow and rise, our working and living conditions will gradually be filled with smart products, if we are willing to overlook the trade-offs in privacy and security. Some will happily welcome the new smart era with open arms, while others will certainly dig in their heels. The question is, where do you stand in all this?
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