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​IoT in the office: Everything you need to know about the Internet of Things in the workplace

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What is IoT in the workplace?

The Internet of Things[1] sees everyday objects being connected to the internet, allowing them either to be controlled remotely, or to collect and share data and communicate without a human being involved. IoT in the workplace[2] can involve a variety of hardware and technologies such as smart devices, robots, and artificial intelligence to improve efficiency and create new business opportunities.

What are the advantages of IoT in the workplace?

Making devices and objects in the workplace more intelligent and able to communicate could make workers happier and more effective, and also make it easier to measure productivity by using real-time data. In addition, it could make staff more efficient by using the artificial intelligence embedded in these devices to automate basic queries and tasks.

What kinds of IoT devices are there in the workplace?

IoT in the workplace can be divided into three main categories: infrastructure, repurposed smart home devices, and business-specific IoT devices.

Although there has been much talk about smart buildings recently, the infrastructure of the workplace has been quietly getting smarter for years; for example, building management systems have existed for some time, and are used to control heating, air conditioning, or doors. In addition, office security and alarm systems are now regularly connected to the internet to allow them to be controlled through apps.

Making these systems more intelligent -- like a heating system that knows how the office temperature responds to changing weather -- allows the office to run more smoothly and so means happier staff. Similarly, vending machines that can call home to ask to be refilled means fewer staff missing their much-craved afternoon sweet treat.

Much of the early interest in IoT devices has

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