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Internet Of Things: Towards A New Paradigm Shift

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With the advent of the 21st century, many new technologies are emerging, including that of the Internet of Things (IoT). 

Now, what is the IoT? It is a form of technology in which all things or objects that we are surrounded by in our lives—such as tables, chairs, sofas, windows, and so on—are going to be powered by technology (primarily the Internet). “Simply, the Internet of Things is made up of devices—from simple sensors to smartphones and wearables—connected together,” says Matthew Evans, the IoT program head at techUK. 

Moreover, our homes will be filled with this new technology; be it gadgets and home appliances such as phones, refrigerators, AC and numerous others. They will be trained and designed in such a way that the work will be relatively easy and trouble-free. However, the aid of this technology will not only be limited to homes; their applications range to larger-scale works too; for example, in various types of industries.

Coming a bit towards the technological aspect, a question which arises in one’s mind is: what does the Internet of Things have to do with 5G networks? Well, the 5G network has excellent bandwidth. So, it will be able to run all the things with great efficiency, reliability and accuracy. What is bandwidth? It is a term—in computer networks—in which data is transferred at incredible speeds. Often, it is measured in bits, megabits and gigabits per second. In addition, IoT devices will work efficiently and faster once 5G systems are introduced widely because then the transportation systems of data can easily be sent.

Furthermore, the question which arises here is: Where will this new technology be of the highest importance? 

It will be tremendously important in factories, as said earlier—albeit in other aspects of life as well—when all things will be connected to the Internet, and will all be operated by complex machines. This is called the Fourth Industrial Revolution, or Industry 4.0, and it has already begun at a basic extent. However, there are many drawbacks, too, in this new system, for instance, now the workers who were employed in, say, a textile industry will be of no value. Labourers will have nothing to construct anymore. Laboratory technicians will have nothing to do. You might be wondering that this will result in joblessness. Yes, you are correct to some extent. But for this purpose, scientists all across the globe have introduced a new program called the ‘Universal Basic Income’ (UBI). In this program, people of all professions—whether it is a scientist or an engineer or a clerk or a nurse—will get a basic (already defined) income or salary without actually having to do anything because of the new circumstances of technological advancements. 

Otherwise, you can imagine how tough the environment would’ve been for people from all professions! 

However, joblessness due to IoT, cannot be completely connected to UBL at this stage; that is a utopian ideal, and it will not happen very soon. However, it might be possible in the distant future. Currently, the technology is advancing very quickly, and IoT will create a void that can only be fulfilled by adapting to new technologies rather than asking people to sit at home and do nothing. It will take a very long time to realize the utopia that is currently being talked about in this text. 

But another question can be pondered about is: wouldn’t it be unfair if a competent and an incompetent person get the same amount of money? For this purpose, the incomes may vary person-to-person, judging on the competency of all people, of course. However, despite all this, there’s another catch; digital dictatorship. People (who are already powerful) will get way more powerful, unlike the poor, who will have to find new ways to survive in this new and tough era. Perhaps they will struggle more than ever in the upcoming future, and the concerned authorities must work in this regard. Yuval Noah Harari, a historian and author of the famous book ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind’ and others, often uses this term; he commonly explains why technology favours tyranny in this sense, and how it would be common in the future. This practice is already being done in various technology-related companies and others. 

To conclude, let us come to the crux of the subject matter: IoT is going to change our world in the next decade, but is Pakistan/World prepared for this fundamental change? Are we ready to tackle its effects? 

Personally, I think that with the passage of time, not only Pakistan but the entire world would consider this fundamental change for the better. Therefore, no matter what the hurdles, we would be able to tackle its effects, and continue to support the technological advancements of humanity! 

According to my humble opinion, just like any other technology, the entire world will eventually adapt to IoT and 5G technologies. The only question is: How quickly will the third world countries like Pakistan will adopt them? These technologies will not only bring comfort to the lives of billions of people in the world, but also bring a lot of opportunities in business, finance and industry. Are Pakistani educational, financial, and industrial systems ready to embrace the change? ‘Human Resource’ is our biggest strength, and if we properly train and educate ourselves, we can use these modern technologies to grow our economy and change lives. For instance, our IT industry is still at its infancy phase. It is bringing very little compared to our neighbouring India and BD, who are adding substantial billions of dollars. This industry will grow exponentially once the IoT and 5G are fully utilized in this region, and we should train ourselves to use them.

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