The Beacon

Five important things to know about the Wi-Fi® Internet of Everything

February 20, 2014 by Kelly Davis-Felner, Wi-Fi Alliance

It’s clear the Internet of Everything is happening, and Wi-Fi is a fundamental enabler. Consumers are coming to understand that the Wi-Fi technology they already know and love is making their lives even better by connecting them to thousands of Internet of Everything products. And it’s even increasing purchase likelihood for smart home devices. In order to help navigate this growing market, Wi-Fi Alliance has put together a list of five important things consumers should know about the Internet of Everything.

  1. The Wi-Fi Internet of Everything is happening now. Wi-Fi is already connecting the Internet of Everything applications that consumers want today. There are a large variety of Wi-Fi enabled thermostats, light bulbs, home security, monitoring and control systems, appliances, automotive products, and wearable devices available today, including the Nest thermostat, Belkin WeMo, LIFX light bulbs, Lockitron, Doorbot, and the Garmin Forerunner 620 – among many others.
     
  2. A single technology can help make all connections seamless. Just think about being able to purchase a new Wi-Fi enabled TV, thermostat, sprinkler system, or even washing machine and immediately adding it right to the same network as your computer, tablet and smartphone. Wi-Fi is the connectivity of choice for so many existing devices, and it is the network of choice for new connected products. Among those surveyed, 91 percent indicated that they are more likely to purchase smart products for their household if they can sync everything to their existing Wi-Fi network.
     
  3. Don’t be fooled by the hype. Wi-Fi applications with practical uses will have success, and those that are simply novel will die away. So think twice before you purchase those Wi-Fi connected leg warmers, do they actually serve a purpose? Most people seem to get it, in fact, over half (53 percent) already have major household items with Wi-Fi connectivity other than conventional devices such as tablets and phones. Top connected items include the television, home security, a thermostat, and lighting.
     
  4. With more connected devices, security is more important than ever. As more of our day-to-day living becomes automated, it’s critical to practice safe connected habits. Wi-Fi has industry-standard security protections consumers can rely on.  A Wi-Fi network using WPA2™ provides both security (you can control who connects) and privacy (the transmissions cannot be read by others) for communications as they travel across your network. For maximum security, your network should include only devices with the latest in security technology – Wi-Fi Protected Access® 2 (WPA2). Wi-Fi CERTIFIED™ devices implement WPA2.
     
  5. Think about your future needs. On average, the tech-savvy consumers we surveyed think all homes will have smart technology in just 12 years, and 68 percent think devices and appliances without smart technology will become obsolete in 16 – that’s not far off!  Combine that with the fact that we all make major purchases like a car, washer and dryer, or refrigerator at least once a decade, so it is important to consider Wi-Fi enabled devices when shopping for your next big household purchase. In fact, 77 percent of smartphone and tablet users think Wi-Fi connectivity will be an important purchase consideration when they next have to replace major household items, including televisions, home security systems, thermostats, lighting, and even cars.

The statements and opinions by each Wi-Fi Alliance member and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions or views of Wi-Fi Alliance or any other member. Wi-Fi Alliance is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information provided by any member in posting to or commenting on this blog. Concerns should be directed to info@wi-fi.org.

Comments

“(53 percent) already have major household items with Wi-Fi connectivity other than conventional devices such as tablets and”

I don’t find a citation for that study.

The study was conducted by Wakefield Research, and the findings can be found in our January press release: http://www.wi-fi.org/news-events/newsroom/wi-fi%C2%AE-connectivity-incre....

I have read many press announcements over the years from main players, Google, Microsoft about the interconnected smart home, often trotted out at CES or Cebit, but they never seem to follow up with an infrastructure and actual products. Another problem has been that although WiFi may be a good infrastructure for some parts of a net,eg Controller, TV, Security Camera, for many others it was often considered too power-hungry and expensive to be embedded in each 'thing', and needed a bridge to a cheaper lower-powered network, maybe Bluetooth4 for things like temperature, vibration sensors.

If you download our white paper (http://www.wi-fi.org/file/connect-your-life-wi-fi%C2%AE-and-the-internet...), page 9 includes a list of Wi-Fi enabled IoE devices that are available now. They range from thermostats and lighting, to home security systems, appliances and automotive applications. Wi-Fi is a versatile technology that can handle a range of tasks, from transferring very small amounts of data at very low power to high-definition multimedia. One of Wi-Fi’s sweet spots for IoE is in the smart home and automotive applications, where it is already connecting a variety of applications. Many of these types of devices are connected to a power source, so power consumption is not an issue with them. With improvements in Wi-Fi power consumption and battery technology, we expect you’ll see a very wide range of Wi-Fi-connected IoE applications across home and industrial segments emerge over the next few years.

The internet of things is here, agreeably. Purchasing smart products for a household if one can synchronize devices to an existing WiFi network is capable. WiFi applications with practical, legitimate, uses will proliferate . WiFi network with WAP2 provides security and privacy. WiFi connectivity will be an important replacement consideration. Thanks for this article and the WiFi alliance staff.

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Kelly Davis-Felner

Wi-Fi Alliance

Vice President, Marketing

Kelly Davis-Felner is Vice President of Marketing for Wi-Fi Alliance, where she oversees branding, communications, market development, program marketing, and public relations for the organization. In addition, she oversees Wi-Fi Alliance program management, including its certification operations. Kelly also holds responsibility for driving the development of Wi-Fi Alliance corporate strategy.

Kelly speaks worldwide about Wi-Fi's impact on applications, devices, and users. She is charged with promoting the technology and the Wi-Fi Alliance collaboration forum worldwide, and is one of its leading ambassadors, working with Wi-Fi Alliance's 600+ member companies.

Before joining Wi-Fi Alliance in 2004, Kelly enjoyed roles in consumer and business marketing, as well as in non-profit management. Kelly holds a BA in Communications from Loyola University of New Orleans, a Masters in Social Work from Tulane University, and an MBA from The University of Texas at Austin. She lives with her family in Austin, Texas.