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How will the ‘Digitally Dependent’ cope with the IoT explosion?

By iPass Staff Writer

How will the Digitally Dependent cope with the Internet of Things ExplosionLabels – we love them. Whether you’re a millennial, generation Y or a baby boomer – you can guarantee you’ve heard it all before and probably been segmented into at least one of those groups. So what are the next generation that grow up going to be coined? You know the ones I’m talking about – that will grow up in a fully connected world, who won’t know life without the internet and will be more tech savvy than you could ever imagine?

Anyone that has witnessed a child play with a tablet will be able to tell you that they are quick adapters – put the gadget in front of them and you can guarantee by the time you turn around they’ll be taking selfies, playing on your apps and surfing the web. The ability for the next generation to so easily adapt means that there is an expectation to maintain the same level of interactivity across a multitude of items they encounter. Try swapping that tablet for a book and I bet you they will continue to swipe, tap and prod at it expecting the kind of instantaneous feedback they’re so used to – I mean I would know – when I switch from my Kindle to a book I sometimes find myself doing the exact same thing!

So what part does IoT play in all of this? Well you only have to read the news to hear about light bulbs that boost Wi-Fi, smart toys that monitor your baby’s health and thermostats that cool your home efficiently, to know that this is going to dramatically change the way we live. With innovations like this paving the way for the future and increasing our reliance on the internet, it’s not surprising that the next generation are going to be ‘digitally dependent’ and unable to imagine life without access to the internet. To put that in context – in 2015, we’re already predicting that 26 to 50 billion devices will be connected by 2020 – so imagine the levels of connectivity we will reach in the next 20 years!

But in order for this to be a success there is one underlying issue that needs to be addressed – and that’s connectivity.

Without connectivity the IoT is useless – just a pile of plastic, silicon and metal – which is where Wi-Fi comes into play. The digitally dependent are not going to sit down and wait around to be connected, they will expect to be connected seamlessly 24/7, 365 days a year, no questions asked. With no experience of unconnected life there will be little room for errors to be made in the eyes of the digitally dependent – so how can we get past this?

Wi-Fi is set to take over by 2020 and be the first choice for connectivity, with 60% of mobile data being carried across the Wi-Fi network. We can already see the rising uptake with network providers turning residential customers into community hotspot providers in an effort to improve their global footprint. With iPass, the world’s largest commercial Wi-Fi network, the ‘digitally dependent’ won’t have to worry about how they’re going to stay connected, with access to over 20 million hotspots to use however, wherever and with whatever connected device they choose to use.  They can access unlimited Wi-Fi everywhere to their heart’s desire – being assured that their home is safe when they connect to their home security cameras even when they are thousands of miles away! So when you put it like that the next generation will be far from ‘digitally dependent’ and more ‘digitally independent’.