The uses of web 4.0 technologies are beginning to become known to the “general public”. Web 4.0 and the Internet of Things is strongly linked to changes in the web. According to the International Telecommunication Union, the Internet of Things is a “global infrastructure for the information society; which makes advanced services available by linking objects (physical or virtual) through interoperable information and communication technologies.
Conceptually, the Internet of Things characterizes connected physical objects. Connection to an open network on the Internet with its own digital identity, capable of communicating with each other. By 2020, the Gartner Institute expects more than 50 billion connected objects on the market. As a result, we are witnessing a true digital revolution that addresses significant transformations in our lifestyles.
The Internet of Things and new services
Certainly, with the progress of technology, new possibilities and services are emerging. For example: connected objects produce large amounts of data (Big Data) whose storage and processing will generate billions of pieces of information; which will enable companies to create new services. This is a major improvement in the industry and logistics sector. We can now monitor machines remotely, perform predictive maintenance on equipment or affect product traceability.
In home automation, the Internet of Things covers all communication devices. Sensors (thermostats, smoke detectors, presence …), smart meters and security systems connected to home automation devices. In the field of environment, these sensors monitor air quality, temperature, sound level, building status, etc..
Web 4.0 and the Internet of ThingsFirst, the lack of standards can disrupt the proper use and development of solutions with the Internet of Things. Since each application has its data differently. In recent years, application protocols have multiplied. Currently a real headache for designers of connected devices, developers, web agencies and hosting providers, etc.. Thus it is often difficult for electronics developers to choose between connectivity options when working with applications and systems for the Internet of Things.
Notably many well-known communication technologies. WiFi, Bluetooth, ZigBee and 2G/3G/4G cell phones, but there are also several new and emerging network options. Factors such as: type of application, bandwidth, data requirements, security and power requirements, battery life are some of the factors that determine the choice of use.
Below we list some of the key communication technologies available to developers:
An important short-range communication technology is, of course, Bluetooth. It has become very important in IT and many consumer product markets. The new Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) – or Bluetooth Smart, as it is labeled today – is an important protocol for Internet of Things applications. While offering a similar range to Bluetooth, it is designed to offer significantly reduced power consumption.
Zigbee is a short-range wireless communication protocol widely used in home automation and industry. The ZigBee PRO and ZigBee Remote Control (RF4CE) protocols, among other available ZigBee profiles, are based on the IEEE802.15.4 protocol and are preferred in applications where low power is required and data exchange is infrequent at low data rates. Low power consumption, high scalability, security and durability make Zigbee suitable for M2M and IoT applications.
Z-Wave is a low-power RF communication technology. It is mainly designed for home automation for products such as lamp and sensor controllers, among others, with data rates up to 100kbit/s. By operating at 900 MHz, Wi-Fi and other wireless communication protocols operating at 2.4 GHz, such as Bluetooth and Zigbee do not affect it. This technology is optimized for reliable, low-latency communication of small data packets. Z-Wave is a simpler protocol.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is the wireless use of electromagnetic fields to identify objects. Short-range RFID measures about 10 cm, but the long range can be up to 200m. This protocol has been specially designed so that devices without batteries can send a signal. In many systems, one side of an RFID system is powered, creating a magnetic field, which induces an electric current.
6LoWPAN is an IP-based communication protocol. It is an acronym for IPv6 over a low-power wireless personal area network. The 6LoWPAN therefore enables smaller devices with limited processing capacity to transmit information wirelessly using Internet Protocol. The most important detail of 6LoWPAN is IPv6.
A new IPv6 IP-based network protocol for the home automation environment is the thread. Based on 6LowPAN, and also like this, it is not an IoT application protocol like Bluetooth or ZigBee. However, from the application point of view, it is mainly designed as a complement to WiFi. Even though Wi-Fi is good for many consumer devices, it has limitations for a home automation installation.
Wi-Fi connectivity is often an obvious choice for many developers. Especially due to the penetration of WiFi in the home environment on local area networks. However, it requires high power consumption. Currently, the most widespread WiFi standard in homes and many businesses is 802.11n. It offers a high throughput in the range of hundreds of megabits per second. Typically, the range of Wi-Fi technology is 10 meters.
Any IoT application requiring long distance operation can take advantage of GSM/3G/4G cellular communication capabilities. Although the mobile is capable of sending large amounts of data, especially for 4G, the energy consumption and expense will be very high for many applications. However, this may be ideal for low-bandwidth data projects over the Internet.
NFC (Near Field Communication) is a technology that enables simple and secure two-way interactions between electronic devices and is particularly applicable to smartphones. It enables consumers to make contactless payments, access digital content and connect electronic devices. Essentially, it extends the capability of contactless card technology; and enables devices to share information up to 4 cm apart.
A major alternative technology is Sigfox, which in terms of range comes between WiFi and cellular. It uses ISM bands, which are free to use without the need to acquire licenses, to transmit data over a very narrow spectrum to and from connected objects over the Internet of IOT.
Neul is similar to Sigfox and operates in the range below 1 GHz. It takes advantage of very small slices of the TV’s White Space spectrum to offer high scalability, high coverage, low power consumption and low cost wireless networks. The systems, based on the Iceni chip, communicate using white space radio to access the high-quality UHF spectrum now available due to the transition from analog to digital television.
LoRaWAN, similar to Sigfox and Neul, turns to WAN (Wide Area Network) applications. Designed to provide low-power WANs; with features specifically required to support low-cost two-way mobile communication in IoT. M2M and smart urban and industrial applications. Optimized for low power consumption; Supporting large networks with millions and millions of devices. Data rates range from 0.3 kbps to 50 kbps.