The internet of Things (IoT) is a term one may have heard a lot recently. It features heavily in discussions about the future – and, increasingly, the present. But what is it actually?

Picture this, you wake up in the morning to an alarm clock which went off at the right time because it looked at your calendar to see the time of your first meeting, or perhaps it is synced up to weather and traffic apps, reflecting the time you need to get up and into work.

As soon as you step out of your bed, your coffee machine starts brewing, your drapes automatically open and your TV discreetly turns on to the morning news. Your heating system is timed so that you have hot water in time for your shower.

Say hello to the Internet of Things.

For the uninitiated, the term “Internet of Things” may seem like a fancy tech concept that doesn’t relate to the people’s lives in any way, but it’s become more a part of the everyday reality than one might have realized. For people who own a smart watch or a fitness tracker, they are already a part of the revolution.

The definition of the Internet of Things, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, is “a proposed development of the Internet in which everyday objects have network connectivity, allowing them to send and receive data.”

What this means is that these connected devices sense aspects of the real world, such as temperature, lighting, the presence or absence of people or objects and etc, and then they report that real-world data or act on it. They have the ability to transmit information, and even sense, monitor and react to human behavior.

In this era, everyday objects will be online and ready to serve the people automatically, based on an understanding of their needs.

Fitness smart devices are now a constant companion to people who care about their bodies, monitoring movements, location and exercise activities to help achieve optimal fitness levels. Connected cars are set to be a major part of the IoT. Live traffic and parking information, real-time navigation and automated driving could all become a reality as connectivity spreads.

With knowledge about one’s fitness and diet needs, the energy efficiency of one’s homes and cars and much more, one will no longer be constrained by the memories or the time it takes to research these topics.

Instead, people can use the knowledge that’s being pushed to their phones, laptops, tablets and smart watches to work and travel faster, exercise more effectively and enjoy more time with their friends and family.

On a grander scale, the IoT is helping to save lives and the planet.

There are now devices that can now help people take medication on time, monitor the elderly and send a patient’s medical data directly to the doctor for examination without even needing to be there in person. There are also going to be drastic effects on other things like waste management and energy consumption, helping to build a more sustainable future.

The world and everything around us is becoming smart day by day. One will have a smart home, a smart car, a smart office and even a smart city.

In a nutshell: The smart life is coming.

This article is contributed by Avance Smart Home.