What is ‘The Internet of Things’?

There are always new buzz words coming through with the advancement in technology. This is further increased by the way our lives are changing at a fast rate due to our love of smart phones and the ever growing application of them.

The term ‘The Internet of Things’ (IoT) is another one of these buzz words.  Although it is actually one that has been around for longer than you might think.  In 1990 the first internet connected toaster was unveiled at the Interop Internet networking show, starting the trend.

So as for the meaning, put quite simply, it’s about connecting devices over the internet, enabling them talk to us, each other and various applications.

Smart Homes

When it comes to smart homes, the most common application of ‘The Internet of Things’ is in heating control.  As a result of the push towards becoming a ‘greener’ planet, not to mention the high cost of heating a home, we are ever more aware of turning the heating on and off at the right time.  The government’s push to smart meters and the investment from energy companies has created technologies that allow you to control your heating remotely via the use of an internet connection.

Nest is a great example of this application and has since expanded beyond the control of heating, to include smoke & CO2 sensors and security cameras.Nest Heating Control Installer

What else can be connected to The Internet of Things?

When it comes to smart homes there is so much that can be connected and controlled via an App on your smart device.  You can have complete control of devices such as TV, Sky, blinds, lighting, security cameras, alarms, gates and music.  To take this away from the slightly less ‘day-to-day’, you can automate things such as swimming pool covers, car lifts and home cinema equipment. To put it simply, pretty much anything that has an electrical cable can be automated.

smart home control

Outside the home

Whilst at Circle Automation we love the application if ‘The Internet of Things’ in homes, its use outside of the home is just as exciting.  Its application can be seen almost everywhere. From traffic lights to bins that signal when they need emptying to farm equipment that monitors crops and automatically milks cows.

Within the medical field there are also many applications that are transforming patient care and research.  Intel have developed a smart band that tracks how much patients with Parkinsons shake, collecting more accurate data than ever before; and people with heart disease can use AliveCore to detect abnormal heart rhythms. Not to mention the use of devices such as Fitbits and sleep trackers used by millions on a daily basis to aid a healthy lifestyle.


So, in summary, The Internet of Things is absolutely huge, is spanning all walks of life and expanding at an ever faster rate.  If you would like to find out more about how you can incorporate smart technology into your home then visit our Services Page or Contact Us to discuss your project.  Our showroom is based in Sevenoaks, Kent and we have exceptional transport links to London, Surrey, Sussex and the Home Counties.