Will the Internet of Things Impact the Events Industry?

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Yes, it will – and we think it’s super exciting.

Confused by all this talk about the internet of things? It’s nowhere near as complicated as it sounds. IoT has become one of the biggest buzzwords in the tech world at the moment and at Noodle Live, we can see a world of possibilities for events and event technology providers.

Check out our founder, Clemi Hardie, talking all things IoT at a recent Event Tech Talks in London:

What is the internet of things?

Really simply, the internet of things is the idea that objects, like fridges, phones or boilers, could link up to the internet and supply really useful information about how they’re working and what’s happening, reducing the human need to look after and monitor them and dramatically increasing efficiency. Almost any object can become a smart-object by connecting to the internet. For example, your toothbrush could connect to the internet so you could see instants statistics about ways to improve your brushing technique. Take that tooth decay!

How will it impact the events industry?

The internet of things has the potential to change almost every aspect of the way we live, including the way we interact with events. Carefully placed smart-objects around the event environment could make life easier for attendees and help #EventProfs gather loads of valuable data about their delegates.

At Noodle Live we already supply RFID and NFC enabled name badges and wristbands that allow delegates to tap various touch points in order to perform commands eg check-in, gather session notes, leave contact details and much more. Every time a delegate performs one of these actions the event organisers receive valuable data that helps them understand the way delegates are interacting with their event so they can make improvements for next time. In many ways, Noodle Live event tech helps #EventProfs create a connected environment without needed to wait for the world to catch up.

“The internet of things will allow us to flip our current process around,” says Clemi Hardie, Founder of event technology provider Noodle Live. “Instead of installing hardware at the events, it will be pre-installed on our smartphones, so it will be perfectly normal to put up event posters that simply say ‘tap here for xxx’ and then an action associated with that poster eg ‘tap here for push notifications’ or ‘tap here to exchange contact details’ or ‘tap here to download session notes’.” Our phones could be used as touch points to interact with the world in a whole new way. This provides a huge opportunity for the event industry to become a lot smarter about the data it gathers to measure the success of events.

What do I need to know?

The internet of things is really exciting, but there are still some big bugs to be worked out. “There’s a huge elephant in the room here,” says Glynn Roberts, CTO at Noodle Live, “security! It’s really early days for these connected devices and security is much lower than in other, more established industries like computers and mobile devices. Overall, the industry is trying to keep costs down and stay competitive, but price must never be allowed to be a compromise for security.”

At Noodle Live we take the security of our client’s data very seriously. Glynn and Clemi are currently working on a comprehensive data security system to allow us to adapt to future changes to IoT infrastructure without compromising any of our established safety checks.

When can we expect to see the internet of things in common use?

IoT is a huge buzzword and several tech companies are racing to be the first to release new smart products, but widespread uptake is still slow. There is also a question of general infrastructure to allow the system to work. If all of our objects are connected, we will need intelligent ways to interact with them. The most likely way this will occur will be using our smartphone or smart-watch.

During June’s Apple Worldwide Developer Conference, there were several clues to indicate that the company are moving towards catering to a fully-connected environment. The most significant clue was the fact they’re planning to open up NFC reading abilities to app developers (including event technology providers like us), allowing app makers to use the iPhones built-in NFC reader. “Even with the latest developments from Apple, there will still be a slow uptake,” says Clemi. “We can’t expect this to become commonplace for a few years yet. At Noodle Live, we’ll keep working with external badges and wristbands for now, whilst our developers continue to prepare for more connected environments to begin evolving.”

In other words: IoT, we’re ready for you! Interested in how IoT is being used? Take a look at these great IoT products and innovations.

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