Almost everyone has an IoT product in their life, whether it’s a FitBit or a smart thermostat and it’s easy to take that tech for granted — just a natural part of day-to-day living.
But there’s a whole universe of surprising IoT products out there — let’s explore.
According to European Parliament statistics, this continent’s bees are in serious trouble: about a third of bee populations are declining.
So thank goodness for BeeAnd.me. Created by two scientists from Montenegro, this software/hardware mix allows beekeepers to transform their bees’ home into a smart hive. The measuring station doesn’t just track stats like temperature, weight and humidity, but also uses data mining to avoid beekeepers of potential problems long ahead of schedule. This also means that should the mortality rate of the hive increase, beekeepers can become data-equipped Sherlock Holmes, finding out the cause of death and eliminating it.
This isn’t just about honey, but about biodiversity — according to the food sustainability think tank the Barilla Center, three out of four kinds of crops “that produce fruit and seeds for human consumption depend at least in part on bees and other pollinators.”
8 out of 10 independent coffee shops don’t survive their first year in business. Small problems pile up: inferior beans, bad stock management, delayed machine servicing…and worst of all, free coffees (according to their data, freebies can cost coffee shops up to 1000€ a month). Enter: Coffee Cloud, a IoT multi sensor device that can be attached to any espresso machine and stores data in the cloud in real-time. It shows how many cups are made per day, the average brewing time, when the machine was last cleaned and stock status so you never run out of high quality beans or miss a service. And you know you’re in good hands – Coffee Cloud was founded by Miroslav Kovac, who’s a coffee bar owner himself (as well as an electronic engineer).
“Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?” asked The Atlantic in 2017. The article’s title sounded like clickbait, but a heartbreaking quote from a 13-year-old interviewed for the piece suggested otherwise: “I think we like our phones more than we like actual people.” Enter Myndr, with a simple but genius idea. The Dutch startup offers a Wifi router for your wall that allows you to control the amount of internet that enters your home, to vanquish arguments with teenagers (or internet-addicted flatmates). But it isn’t a crude on/off decision — thanks to its five positions, you can set it so you can exclude everything but Netflix, or simultaneously allow Spotify but block Whatsapp for an uninterrupted kitchen dance party.
It’s easy to worry about ageing grandparents, especially if they’re independent souls living alone. What if they fell? Took ill? Thankfully, InShoerance has innovated a solution to this problem: the first sensor insole with motion sensors and cognitive alarms. In a bad scenario – if a person who usually wears this is unconscious or unable to move, it alerts helpers. In the worst case scenario – when the user isn’t wearing their shoes when they have an accident, the helpers will still be alerted if they don’t hear from that person, since their “system is capable of learning your daily movement routine over a short period of time and detect unusual usage patterns.”