The next major technology trend is emerging – the device mesh is said will merge the physical and virtual worlds. Thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT), more and more devices are connecting. Worldwide, there are now a total of 1.2 billion LTE subscriptions—and that number is constantly increasing. By 2021, an estimated 28 billion devices will be connected to the Internet.
So, what is the device mesh? The device mesh is an expanding set of endpoints—mobile, wearable, consumer, home electronics, automotive and environmental devices, including sensors in the IoT—that people and businesses will use to reach applications and information or interact with others. Previously our sensors merely reported the collected data back to a single database. But now, apps are starting to talk with each other directly, and the endpoints we use to access our information and applications are starting to work in tandem with one another. This means that we are moving towards a huge network landscape that Gartner identified as one of the Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2016.
Before IoT, apps were downloaded to smartphones or tablets, and a person would open the app whenever they wanted to use it, meaning the app would operate on command only. In the new device mesh environment, as soon as you turn on a phone or device, an app will start to work quietly in the background, using data imputed from a number of other applications. One need only look at the hype surrounding Pokémon Go to see an example of device mesh in action.
Some have dubbed the new era as “post-app” or “post-mobile.” However, it may be more accurate to suggest that we are entering an era in which apps and mobile devices are so interactive that their operations will permeate every aspect of everyday life. For everyday users, the practical effects of device mesh are that their experiences of technology will become even more personalized.
As app integration becomes the norm, users will no longer need to concern themselves with app compatibility. Apps will work together invisibly, operating as users require. With an ambient user experience, users will actually spend less time finagling with individual apps. Instead, mobile devices can act as true personal assistants, working in the background to fulfill needs and provide services.
The potential of this technology offers numerous applications for businesses. In this new environment, companies will be able to provide personalized experiences to customers and employees. However, there are undoubtedly legal and privacy concerns that will need to be approached carefully.
Device mesh is coming—indeed, in some ways, it is already here. To navigate these new waters, companies need a trusted partner to help them understand the risks and make the right choices for their organization. Not sure where to start? Talk to one of our mobility experts today.