Blockchain alone can revolutionize many industries, as we have seen in our previous articles. But when blockchain applied together with the next generation innovative technologies such as IoT, Artificial intelligence, Machine Learning (to name a few) will do wonders. The combination of these technologies brings the best of each other. Especially in terms of security and authenticity of the data generated from millions of devices across the world on a daily basis.
What is IoT?
IoT stands for the Internet of things. It is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital devices. These devices are provided with unique identifiers that can transfer data in the network without human-to-human or human-to-machine interaction. This is possible as the devices are extended with internet connectivity and sensors so that the transfer of data is possible.
With so much data being generated and transmitted without any human intervention, there are many concerns about the security and privacy of data. Blockchain comes to rescue to address the concerns of privacy and security in the world of IoT. Let us see how, with the help of some use cases below.
The concept of IoT enables smart homes. Most of the devices we use at home can be embedded with sensors, and with the help of IoT, we can control them remotely using our smartphones. When at home, they can easily be controlled using Alexa, Google Home, with the help of voice recognition. To enable all these functionalities, sensitive data such as voice and facial recognition should be stored. This data can be stored securely in the blockchain, which allows strict access restrictions. It can be accessed by anyone else if required only through individual permissions using smart contracts.
IoT plays a very crucial role in health care these days. Remote health care can be achieved using IoT. Elderly care is essential to most of the countries these days as the elderly population is increasing in countries like China, Japan, and the US. Since there are fewer people to take care of the elderly, IoT can come to our rescue.
With the help of IoT, if the patients don’t take medicine on time, a message will be directly sent to their smartphones, reminding them to take medication (since the quantity isn’t reduced from the containers). Whenever a fall or sudden change in a heartbeat is detected, the nearest health care providers are automatically alerted with the help of IoT. These are only some examples of uses in health care, but since this is very sensitive data, blockchain can help in keeping them secure. Most importantly, tampering cannot be done if the data is stored in the blockchain, which is very crucial to achieve the desired outcome in these cases.
Agriculture can be widely improved by deploying IIOT (Industrial IOT) sensors and satellite imagery to monitor the millions of acres of land. With IoT used in the supply chain, provenance tracking can be enabled. Crops can be sold by using smart contracts even before harvesting them as all this data ensures the buyer of the quality of the product from the fields to their floor. This makes a profitable trade for all the parties involved.
There are ample opportunities for blockchain and IoT together in Industrial sectors when it comes to the maintenance of the machines. With the help of sensors continuously updating the performance of the devices, wear and tear can be restricted, thus decreasing the downtime. Automobile industries can use real-time data to get the vehicles serviced on time or replace a crucial part in time. Autonomous cars can be made more reliable and usable using IoT and blockchain. The combination of IoT and Blockchain is amazing, but it is important to remember that a lot of other potentials are yet to be achieved.