There is no arguing that the Internet has completely changed the face of computer technology in a very short period. It is only since the mid 90’s that internet usage has become commonplace in businesses and in homes, but the past 20 years have significantly changed the technology industry, and affected the way everyone does business.
The advance of software technology
The Internet is in essence software driven technology. Though it makes use of physical hardware to transfer data, the hardware involved in the Internet has been around for a long time. It is the ability to reliably send packets of information around very large and complex networks owned by different organizations that was the breakthrough element of the Internet.
Some of the most important advances brought about by the existence of the internet are also dependent on software, including the increasing influence of artificial intelligence on the way networked computer systems answer the most important questions of life – and help individuals and businesses to make decisions.
Connected devices everywhere
The Internet of things or IoT refers to the way in which even small, basic electronic devices are connected to the Internet. Whether it is your home thermostat or a sensor on a piece of industrial machinery, devices are increasingly connected to the Internet and able to supply real-time information. This information makes it easier to manage cities, to plan for business needs and to reduce energy consumption.
IoT has a particularly important role to play in the technology industry, as technology providers are able to improve the way they plan and become much more responsive to customers’ needs. With large networks of sensors acting as informants, technology companies can create a far more accurate picture of what is really happening in their own businesses, and the businesses of the customers they serve.
Internet connectivity as the driving factor
All the different aspects of Internet technology including software and devices rely heavily on the consistent and fluid connectivity provided by the Internet. IoT applications require connected devices to be online 24/7, while artificial intelligence relies on data sharing on a large scale, requiring significant bandwidth to enable information to be shared nearly instantaneously.
Though the establishment of the Internet has changed the way technology businesses operate, it is the improvements in connectivity that has made even more applications possible. Advances in mobile data connectivity makes it possible for IoT devices to easily connect to their servers, whereas in the past connected devices had to have a physical connection to the internet to exchange data.
Perhaps the most fundamental way in which Internet connectivity has changed the technology industry is on the level of affordability. Connectivity is more affordable to consumers and businesses, which boosts the number of people, devices and networks that are connected to the global Internet. In turn, this increased connectivity makes everything from artificial intelligence applications to day-to-day business activities more efficient.