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Endesa - Electricity, Gas, People

The Internet of Things is not just anything

Published on May 9, 2019

They say it every day on the news: everything will eventually be connected to the internet, if it isn’t already. But how does this change your life? We’ll explain it, focusing on energy.

The times in which just an ordinary computer could connect to the Internet are long gone. Cell phones have ceased to be just telephones and have become mini handheld computers. Wi-Fi naturally spread around cities. The most important robots have been born but they didn't have arms or legs, because they were algorithms who saved us work.

And, finally, the day has arrived when anything you can touch can also connect to the Internet.

What is the Internet of Things?

The name chosen is not so far-fetched; in fact, it’s quite obvious. The Internet of Things. What does it mean? Things that connect to the Internet. For example, your television, refrigerator, lock, etc.

If such a pedestrian definition isn’t sufficient for you, there’s also a more academic one:

  • The Internet of Things is an entire interrelated system that is based on the possibility of connecting various physical objects to the Internet. Once online, these objects can communicate with each other without any human intervention and be controlled remotely.

But the best way to understand it, is with a specific example:

  • Your cell phone (connected to the Internet, of course) is capable, through an app, of seeing in real time what is happening in your home thanks to a camera (connected to the Internet) that is connected to an alarm at the same time (that is also connected to the Internet).

The Internet of Things is that all objects in your daily life can connect to the Internet to be controlled remotely and/or automatically.

How is the Internet of Things useful for you?

It's great for technology to advance and the news channels don't talk about anything else, but why should you care? That is, how can the Internet of Things help you in your daily life?

The answer to this question varies tremendously. To start, is your home smart? What devices do you have that are connected to the Internet? If you're starting from zero, you should know that making your house smart costs between 340 and 2,100 euros depending on your ambitions.

As you have more and more objects connected, your possibilities multiply. There are now refrigerators that automatically make purchases online when they see a product has run out. You can now give orders remotely so that your hoover, washing machine or dishwasher are set to operate whenever you decide.

In the end, it is an attempt to make your life easier. You control more and more and your objects are increasingly smart (and more obedient). You do less work, and they do more.

The Internet of Things and energy

Focusing our attention, let’s talk about your electricity and gas bills. Or in other words, let’s talk about your energy consumption. How can the Internet of Things help you?

  • 1. Control how much you spend: and control it instantly with the click of a button. You connect and see how many kWh you have consumed since a given date. You can also configure alerts that will notify your cell phone or e-mail when you’ve surpassed the limits that you've set.
  • 2. Find out why you spend what you spend: you’ll be able to know the consumption at each hour of the day and how it relates to your use of your home appliances. Only in this way will you be able to know why sometimes you consume more and other times less.
  • 3. Spend less: either by optimising your consumption (being more efficient, wasting less), or by optimising your tariff. There are tariffs on the market that are turning things around: it’s no longer you who adapts to your tariff, now your tariff adapts to you.

All of these operations are within your reach thanks to the Internet of Things, and thanks to Endesa, a pioneer company in digitalisation.

There are many ways to interact with this information: from your computer, through an energy advice cell phone app and also through virtual assistants, whom you can order to do whatever you want.

In this sector the voice assistants from Amazon and Google stand out. Endesa is absolutely compatible with both.

Voice assistants (Alexa, Google) centralise the orders that you want to give all objects connected to your network of the Internet of Things.