The next growth wave in the wireless industry is machine-to-machine (commonly referred to as M2M) communications. Combined with 4G LTE, M2M is poised to spur innovation across several industries.
What this means for consumers is that their home appliances will be able to talk to their smartphones and tablets. In addition, patients will be able to consult face-to-face with health professionals without leaving their homes.
Recently, Verizon Wireless Advanced Solutions Architect Ben Loetz demonstrated a VGo interactive robot to more than 100 corporate communicators attending the fourth annual Emerging Media Summit in Louisville, Ky. VGo enables doctors to see and interact with patients remotely and has also been used in a classroom setting. It is one of many 4G LTE-enabled products that have come about through the Verizon Innovation Program in Waltham, Mass.
“A Newark fourth-grader recovering from a brain tumor at home could see and hear what was going on in the classroom, and his teacher and classmates could see, hear and interact with him via the VGo high-tech stand in,” Loetz explained during the presentation.
The innovation possible through machines talking with one another is almost endless. Imagine a world where healthcare teams can monitor and interact with a patient suffering with a chronic condition from miles away; or where Interactive self-service kiosks at a pharmacy or mall allow consumers to test themselves for a variety of health conditions and get recommendations for follow-up care.
Moving from personal connectivity to machine connectivity - creating what is often called the “internet of things” - opens up a whole world of opportunity for business. Some of the solutions are already a reality, and with the expanded use of 4G LTE and M2M fueling innovations, new options and possibilities will continue to grow.