Understanding Smart Devices in the Philippines and Their Importance to Modern Businesses
Phones, tablets, watches, speakers, laptops, and TVs – these are some of the most commonly used smart devices in the Philippines. As someone who is living in the 21st century, a.k.a. the Information Age, you’re probably already familiar with these types of devices. If not, then we’ll give a quick run through for you.
Smart devices are electronic gadgets that are connected to other devices of the same type, and ultimately, to their users via wireless protocols including, but not limited to: NFC, Wi-Fi, Li-Fi, 3G, and Bluetooth. They come in a wide variety of form factors and serve many different purposes, and to some extent, are capable of operating interactively and autonomously. On top of that, some of the things that are referred to as smart devices also exhibit properties of ubiquitous computing – a concept where information processing is done in real-time. A popular example of a property of ubiquitous computing is artificial intelligence, although devices don’t need to have this in order to be called smart.
Out of all technological advancements, the uptake of smart devices in the Philippines and other parts of the world is the fastest one in history. According to analytics, the rate at which we adopted these devices was ten times faster than with personal computers back in the 1980s, three times faster than with social media and networking sites, and twice as fast as when the internet boomed in the 1990s. The reason behind this quick adoption rate is because of the wealth of applications that smart devices offer. With them, we have the power to address every need at the single touch or click of a button.
Ease of accessibility is a benefit that is currently most used at homes which is why smart home-building has become a thing in architecture. People want their appliances and devices connected to a single network so that they can control them at their whim. That said, smart devices and smart tech aren’t just beneficial at home! Businesses stand to gain a great deal from implementing and integrating smart devices into their operations and this is what we’ll be looking into today!
The Difference Between Smart, Connected, and IoT Devices
In recent years, smart devices have integrated other types of devices that are slightly similar but distinctly different. This concept isn’t always easy to grasp, but we swear that you’ll get what we mean by the end of this section. There are three primary types you have to be familiar with, namely: smart devices, connected devices, and IoT devices. Here in Manila, these items are slowly but steadily being adopted by businesses. We’ll describe them here one by one starting with smart devices!
A smart device is one that is able to provide a certain level of automation and can be programmed to perform a specific function. Most of them have, what the tech world calls, an “intuitive UI.” No one has a standardized definition of this but most agree that a UI is considered intuitive if users are able to predict its actions and results without doing any sort of experimentation or deduction. It should also be able to help users perform actions with minimal effort and in record time. Imagine a smart coffee machine that successfully prepares a cup of coffee with the press of a button or a smart thermostat control that consistently maintains room temperature.
In the case of smart devices, actual interaction is needed to perform a function – you have to press the buttons on your smart coffee machine and manually configure your smart thermostat. They aren’t connected to a network and can’t be controlled by separate devices. Those that have this feature are now defined as connected devices.
Here’s where the confusion starts: during the early years of smart devices, they didn’t have to be connected to anything and were able to function autonomously. These days, however, the opposite is starting to become the norm. Now, smart devices must be connected to some other kind of technology via – as we mentioned earlier – wireless protocols, blurring the line between smart and connected devices.
Aside from being controlled by remote devices such as your phones or tablets, connected devices can also interact with users and regularly perform specific actions. An example of this is a smart and connected refrigerator that notifies you on a separate device (your smartphone, for example) that you’re out of food. Beyond that, it can even order that specific item by itself so long as it is connected to your preferred online store.
For a refrigerator to be able to do such actions by itself, it has to be connected to a lot of things – your phone, the internet, and an online shopping site. When you extend these connections further, you start to create a network of physical objects that are capable of communicating with each other without any user input. At this point, they become IoT, or Internet-of-Things devices – that which are used to create smart cities, smart homes, and smart businesses.
In a nutshell, a single device that performs autonomously is a smart device. If it has the ability to be linked to a separate device, then it becomes a connected device. Finally, a whole network of connected devices that work in complete harmony is called IoT devices. In the Philippines, more and more businesses are beginning to realize just how important all of these things are when it comes to their operations.
6 Defining Features of Smart Devices in the Philippines
In order to be able to differentiate between smart devices in the Philippines from the crowd of other technologically advanced gadgets, here are their defining features:
- Functional – People tend to create gadgets that have no genuine purpose and fail to help ease our lives. “Smart” lighting, for example, are lights that you can turn on and off with your phone, but they’re not that practical because the switches themselves can do the job perfectly well. If, however, you can control the color of the light, then that could be useful and functional and can be considered a smart device.
- Capable of Automation – The word automation is open to interpretation because it can take many forms. One popular example is the automated and motion sensing lights that turn on and off as you enter and exit a room. A smart fridge ordering an item – as mentioned earlier – is also a form of automation. Put it simply, it is the process of automatically performing a task based on specific triggers; an action that is done on reflex.
- Has Great Awareness – Automation can’t be achieved if a device has no sense of awareness. Think about it, if a smart fridge can’t sense that your carton of milk is empty, how will it be able to place an order? Smart lights, likewise, won’t serve any purpose if they aren’t capable of determining whether or not a person has entered a room.
- Easy to Use – Most people are impressed with the complexity of technology and praise devices that require hours to master, but you should be more in awe of complex devices that only take a quick minute to learn. These are the truly smart devices that add comfort and ease to our daily lives and not stress and confusion.
- Able to Learn – It may sound a little scary but a smart device must be able to learn. What this means is that it must be able to automatically and autonomously identify patterns and change its responses. The ability to do these things makes a device more efficient, convenient, and overall simple to use.
Secure – The one important feature that manufacturers and developers often tend to overlook is security, mostly due to the fact that they’re so focused on other aspects. A lot of so-called smart devices in the market today lack a level of security and it’s been a cause of concern for security experts and citizens. No one wants a device that will allow hackers to penetrate and take over their private networks, so it’s crucial that security is made a priority.
3 Smart Devices Every Business Should Have
As we said in the introduction, businesses, small or large, gain to benefit from integrating smart devices in their operations. Out of the thousands that are available in the market today and excluding commonly used smart devices in the Philippines like laptops and tablets, your business should at least have these ones:
Personal AI Assistant
While many are convinced that AI assistants like Siri, Cortana, and Alexa are mere gimmicks, we, along with other experts, believe that they are great productivity boosters. When used correctly and purposefully (as in not for the sake of answering life’s unanswered questions), they can do repetitive but necessary tasks like arranging conference calls, keeping up with schedules, sending emails, and taking notes.
With those tasks made easier or even completely removed, you and your employees (yes, your employees should also have access to AI assistants) can focus on the more important work. It’s also a great entry point to the world of AI which has a lot of things to offer, and you have to admit, using advanced technologies does make your business cool and cutting-edge!
Energy Efficient Smart Devices
On top of boosting productivity, smart devices can also help make your business more energy efficient. For you, the business owner, this means lower energy bills and more funds for revenue-generating projects. There are many energy-efficient smart devices you can install in your workplace, but the two best ones are smart thermostats and smart lighting.
You may not be aware of it but the constant adjusting of thermostat done by the people in the office can really drive up your energy bill. You won’t have to worry about that with a smart thermostat because it will be able to keep temperatures at comfortable levels at all times and according to defined work hours. The financial benefit of installing smart lighting is pretty explanatory. Never again will you have to leave a light on overnight because you can either control them through your phone or have them turn off automatically when people leave the room.
On top of making your business energy-efficient, these smart devices also increase comfort levels in your office which, in turn, further boosts employee satisfaction and productivity.
Smart Security Devices
Security is of utmost importance to any and all businesses and a single breach can lead to millions worth of loss and damage. Unfortunately, at this point in time, keys and padlocks just aren’t as reliable anymore. Businesses now require much tighter forms of security. This usually means smarter security in the form of smart keyless locks, smart alarms, smart cameras, and similar devices that you can use to control and monitor your office.
Aside from physical and in-real-life security, there’s also the subject of cybersecurity. Now that everything is connected to the world wide web, a single crack in your cyber walls can bring down your entire operation. In order to counter these possible attacks, you have to ensure that you are using smart devices that use complex and impenetrable algorithms.
Aside from these three types of smart devices, there are others that you may want to get for your business. Fair warning, though; there’s a chance that depending on smart devices may bring your business down rather than raise it farther up.
The Importance of Smart Devices to Modern Businesses
Smart devices in the Philippines offer more than just productivity, comfort, efficiency, and security; they also help new opportunities and revenue streams because of their ability to collect and analyze important data. That may already seem impressive enough, but that’s actually only the start.
Business owners now realize that these advanced technologies are opening up entirely new ways of doing business that wasn’t even imaginable before. These days, anyone and anything can exist and be monitored using a single smart device and with absolute precision. Due to the power of these devices, normal business models are being disrupted and traditional organizations are caught off guard.
Organizations are constantly – and often way too intensely – pondering how these technologies can make their process better. In reality, they should go beyond that and figure out how they can fully and easily integrate these devices into their business in order to achieve optimal functionality and sustainability. Put simply, businesses should be thinking long-term because smart home devices in the Philippines are starting to become a necessity to stay competitive in the modern era.
Build a Smart Business with Alchemist Multimedia!
Smart technology or the utilization of smart devices in the Philippines isn’t a trend that your business can choose to ride or not. If you think they’re only there to streamline your work process, reduce workload, and improve productivity, then you’re slightly mistaken. Smart devices do more than that which is why they’re slowly becoming necessary for businesses that want to thrive in the current age.
The organizations that do this are rightfully called smart businesses. They’re the ones that stand a chance when it comes to lasting long in their respective industries. If that’s what you desire for your own business, then we’re telling you now to trust and believe in the power of smart devices. Most of them may be small in size but they are stuffed with an almost limitless amount of power and data.
Of course, aside from on creating a smart business that can propel your business to higher and previously-unattainable heights, you have to put maximum effort on actual business operations such as social media optimization and digital marketing. If by any chance, you need help in that department, then we’d be glad to help.
We, Alchemist Multimedia, can provide you with any and all types of digital services and you can trust that we’ll deliver consistently! If you want to know about our services, then head to this page. Together, we’re going to help you achieve your goal of building a smart business in the 21st century!