Internet of Things

In the Few Minutes You Weren't Watching, the Connected Future Arrived

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I’m a futurist and IoT obsessed. The implications for a connected world are limitless. Our world is already so awesome, and is only getting better with our crazy advances in technology. In our pockets alone, we hold the computing power of what the most advanced countries held at their highest governmental levels just 20 short years ago. We have driverless cars cruising the streets, voice command everything, sensors that control anything, and just recently the Back to the Future II hover board was finally released!

I’ve been waiting for it since I saw the movie as a kid.

For those of us reading between the Google (Alphabet) lines, some subtle but huge moves are taking place: first off, they just released their new Internet of Things (IoT) operating system called Brillo, they’ve logged thousands of automated vehicle driving hours, stealthily rolling out expansion plans for their lightning fast Internet network called Google Fiber, and enhancing Google Glass to make it more sleeker and fashionable.

Related: Google Changed Glass's Name to a Migraine Symptom

To recap: we have an operating system that will allow connecting to anything and everything, automated vehicles that drive themselves, lightning fast Internet networks and wearable glasses that give you instant Internet connection with voice command. Alphabet is positioning itself to roll out some serious connectivity.

In addition to all the above, check out these other IoT companies making some cool moves:

1. Notion.

Notion is a tiny sensor the size of an Oreo cookie, with eight sensors to monitor and control your home.

Notion can detect hundreds of different household events. For example, if your water heater leaks, if your garage door is left open, if a liquor or gun cabinet is opened, or if the lights are left on in the living room. This tiny, smart, multi-function sensor can easily be placed anywhere. Notion can be moved to new locations at any time, and is capable of detecting acceleration, water leaks, temperature, sound, natural frequency and much more.

This device sends alerts directly to a phone, tablet or computer via email, text, or push notification. Alerts can also be sent directly to family members, friends, or neighbors who the user trusts to ensure critical events are not left unattended to. Notion gets smarter over time as it starts to recognize how you live your life. The system is smart enough to know who has entered a home and knows when to send and not send alerts.

2. Cleu.

Cleu is the new smart alarm clock. It automates your smart home devices the moment you wake up and connects with everything. Cleu connects with Nest, and allows you to wake up comfortably by setting your thermostat to your preferred temperature the moment your alarm goes off. Cleu connects with Hue, which allows you to preset lighting ambiance to different alarms you’ve set at different times of the day. Cleu even connects directly with your schedule, so that your first appointments for the day can be pulled directly from your calendar and displayed on the home screen. Pretty nifty.

Related: Out of the Loop on the Internet of Things? Here's a Brief Guide.

3. Scanalytics.

Scanalytics is part of Microsoft's new Internet of Things accelerator. The company's flagship product is an intelligent floor mat called the SoleSensor, which measures foot traffic. As described on the website, it works like a touch screen for the floor and the company claims that it can measure 100percent of foot traffic in an area, down to each individual step.

The opportunity with SoleSensor for business is huge, especially in retail, because SoleSensor can gauge what part of the store customers are frequenting and even connect with other devices to prompt actions based on customer behavior.Here is an example displayed on the website: "When someone is standing in front of this product for longer than one minute, display competitive pricing information and send a text to a nearby sales associate."

4. Chui.

Chui is a smart doorbell. More importantly, however, is what the company is doing with its software. Chui uses facial recognition technology to turn your face, and the faces of those you allow, to become the keys that unlock a door. Additionally, Chui also allows two-way video calls through the device so users can chat with their visitors from their phone. Users can also control the door systems via their smartphones, and allow visitors to enter remotely.

5. Neura.

Neura is another cool example of total connectivity. Neura connects your individual devices, frequently-visited places and people close to you. Neura users assign the important connections between the different inputs and tracks your daily routines and interactions.

With your permission, Neura will then improve your daily life through automation. The more people, places, devices and feedback you provide, the smarter Neura gets. As noted on the website, It can notify your friends and family of certain daily events it detects. For example, you can notify your best friend every time you arrive at a meeting place, or get an automatic notification every time your kids get home from school. So, the more you use it, the better it understands your daily routines and interactions to recommend ways to improve your daily life through its automation.

It’s fun and exciting to see the future being built right before our eyes. This is an amazing time to be an entrepreneur. Figure out what products you want to use in your life, and go build them.

Related: Roomba Once Was Blind, But Now It Sees