Internet of things (IoT) is the new way of communication between living and non-living things. IoT-based communication is relevant to any vertical segment - Healthcare, Automotive, Manufacturing, Industry 4.0, Retail, Transport etc. Adoption of this technology is very high across all vertical segments and increasing day by day. Today, smartphones play a very important role in the IoT-based communication ecosystem. The smartphone is practically the first IoT device that is readily available and used by millions across the world and this number is growing every day. Smartphones are mostly used to view and control IoT devices (non-living things) by the end user (a living thing), either directly or via IoT servers. But a smartphone with multiple built-in sensors like GPS, camera, accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity etc. and wireless communication technology - Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, RFID, NFC etc. can play a significant role in acting as an edge gateway. This will optimize the cost and adoptability of IoT technology among common people across the world.
Advantages: Mobile as a Universal IoT Gateway
The smartphone will add more value as a gateway with the collected data from edge IoT devices as well as from the user to make more intelligent decisions dynamically.
- Commonly used devices for individuals will increase adoptability
- Robust platform provided by software giants
- Significant storage and data processing capabilities
- Built-in communication protocol
- Secure sandbox architecture
- Easy to maintain, upgrade and enhance
Why we need Universal IoT Gateway
Any IoT device should be able to connect to the internet without any proprietary gateway or Hub. The smartphone is a commonly used computing system today and can be used as a universal gateway for any kind of IoT sensors to connect to the internet.
The IoT Gateway plays a critical role to manage edge IoT sensors, and key responsibilities for gateways are
- Data collection from the IoT sensors
- Buffering data until they can be pre-processed
- Pre-processing the data
- Transfer the results to the IoT Cloud
- Decides if the data at a given stage of
- processing should be temporary, persistent, or kept in-memory
A smartphone can perform all these tasks and act as a universal gateway so that it will be easy to plug-in any IoT sensors to connect to the internet. The diagram below has this view