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IoT gets pervasive

Ever thought you may need to charge your belt? Think again… Image credit: Welt

The sign of pervasiveness of IoT (Internet of Things) are everywhere, there are sensors embedded in a growing number of objects, including common ones. Most of the time we fail to perceive them, they are invisible, like the ones we have in our smartphones (over ten different types of sensors are there) since they have become transparent (every time you place the phone to your hear the screen shuts down to save a bit of battery: this thanks to a proximity sensor detecting the closeness to your ear).

Some other times we are forced to recognise them, like when we need to power them up. That is the case with the belt sold by Welt.

Your smartphone just got a new task: talking with your belt! Image credit: Welt

The belt, it comes in several finish to fit your fashion taste, is embedded with sensors detecting a number of parameters that are transferred to an application on your smart phone. This provide monitoring of your girth, the number of steps taken during the day (with your pants on…) and the distance walked, the time you spent sitting, the meals you took and the calories burnt. It can even send an alarm if you fall!

The charge should last a full month of use, so it should be ok for most people. Not sure if this would result in an evolution of the closet that should come equipped with chargers. That might be the case if the number of apparels and suits needing periodical recharge grows.

This sensors laden belt might be seen as yet another gadget, and it surely is, but it is also a sign of the evolution of electronics, of its performance and affordability. More than that. It is the sign of an ecosystem that has the smartphone at its core. The smartphone makes possible the translation of data detected by a variety of sensors into personalised meaning. At the same time it decreases the cost to deliver functionality and slowly it changes our perception of the world.

About Roberto Saracco

Roberto Saracco fell in love with technology and its implications long time ago. His background is in math and computer science. Until April 2017 he led the EIT Digital Italian Node and then was head of the Industrial Doctoral School of EIT Digital up to September 2018. Previously, up to December 2011 he was the Director of the Telecom Italia Future Centre in Venice, looking at the interplay of technology evolution, economics and society. At the turn of the century he led a World Bank-Infodev project to stimulate entrepreneurship in Latin America. He is a senior member of IEEE where he leads the Industry Advisory Board within the Future Directions Committee and co-chairs the Digital Reality Initiative. He teaches a Master course on Technology Forecasting and Market impact at the University of Trento. He has published over 100 papers in journals and magazines and 14 books.