5 Examples of Smart Devices and their Attributes

Examples of smart devices are; automatic thermostats, soil sensors, smart phones, air quality sensors, and smart watches.


It is important to note that smart devices differ from smart appliances like energy-efficient refrigerators that are used in smart homes.


This article discusses examples of smart devices and some of their basic attributes, as follows;






1). Automatic Thermostats (as one of the Examples of Smart Devices)

An automatic or smart thermostat is a device that uses a combination of artificial intelligence and internet of things (IoT) technologies to automatically adjust the heating and cooling systems in a building [5].

The difference between a thermostat, programmable thermostat and smart thermostat is the availability and use of data; where thermostats do not collect or use data, programmable thermostats use data as regulated by humans, and smart thermostats use data from its surrounding to regulate its own functions.

In a sustainable building, the smart thermostat is an essential component that receives most of its real-time data from other devices with which it is connected through Wi-Fi or other connectivity tools.

These devices provide the thermostat with continuous updates regarding the temperature of the building in which it is installed. It in turn uses these updates to adjust the operating mode of temperature regulation appliances like the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC).

It is usually worth getting a smart thermostat because the device plays a role in energy conservation, and optimizes the energy efficiency of buildings in the long term [2]. This it achieves by reducing the rate at which energy wastage occurs in the form of heat losses or other thermal dynamics.

The disadvantages of a smart thermostat include installation complexity, and purchasing cost. However, these are usually outweighed by benefits of the device.

Examples of Smart Devices: Automatic Thermostat (Credit: Ben Simpson 2021 .CC BY 2.0.)
Examples of Smart Devices: Automatic Thermostat (Credit: Ben Simpson 2021 .CC BY 2.0.)






2). Soil Sensors for Unmanned Irrigation

Soil sensors are devices used to collect data on soil characteristics like moisture content and physicochemical conditions, which can be used to understand the environment as well as make decisions.

Smart soil sensors are designed to collect soil data in real time, and to work with other smart devices like phones, to share and utilize data.

These sensors are often wireless in their mode of connection to other devices. An example of their use is in smart irrigation, where the soil data that is collected is used to automate the function of irrigation equipment [1].

When used for irrigation, smart soil sensors can reduce labor costs, while improving efficiency. This could in turn go a long way to optimize agricultural productivity, and help fight food insecurity and hunger issues in the society.

Aside irrigation function, smart soil sensors can be used for soil monitoring, as part of measures to achieve soil conservation especially in areas where degradation of soil is a problem [7].

The best soil sensors are those which combine simplicity and portability with efficient data handling and connectivity.






3). Smart Phones (as one of the Examples of Smart Devices)

A smart phone or smart mobile device is a portable system that combines the capabilities of telephones with other functionalities like internet and wireless connectivity, visual display, touch sensitivity, and camera units.

Smart phones are called smart because of their ability to integrate and simultaneously manage multiple technologies while collecting, sharing and utilizing data in real time [4].

Due to their use for communication, smart phones are arguably the most-used and most-common example of smart devices. They are also the easiest, most multifunctional and most versatile, so that they can be integrated with various other kinds of devices.

In many cases, smart phones are effectively used to perform the typical functions of computers, smart watches, thermostats and smart cameras among others; by means of software applications and machine learning functionalities.






4). Air Quality Sensors

A smart air quality sensor, also called a smart air quality monitor; is a device that is used to assess air quality conditions, and collect data from such assessment in real time.

The smart air quality monitor actively detects constituents that could cause air pollution, or others that are indicative of major greenhouse emissions in a given area [3].

This functionality is useful for sustainability, preliminary evaluation for environmental remediation, to provide information for guiding environmental policies like the carbon tax, as well as for monitoring the effects of remedial measures.

Air quality sensors can share a wireless connection with other smart devices like phones, to facilitate data transfer.






5). Smart Watches (as one of the Examples of Smart Devices)

A smart watch (or smartwatch) a wearable device with the design of a wristwatch, and multiple digital capabilities that include data collection, sharing, analysis, and software utilization.

Smartwatches work by integrating various functionalities with the help of low-complexity neural networks and small-scale integrated circuits, and connecting to other devices through wireless technology, to perform diverse functions.

A smartwatch is used for any of various purposes that include time-keeping, visual and audio output, collection and sharing of data, and communication [6].

Some smartwatches are equipped to perform most or all functions of a smart phone. They can also be connected to smart phones and other wireless-enabled devices.

Examples of Smart Devices: Smart Watches (Credit: Albert Tomanek 2018 .CC BY-SA 4.0.)
Examples of Smart Devices: Smart Watches (Credit: Albert Tomanek 2018 .CC BY-SA 4.0.)






Benefits of IoT Devices

Benefits of IoT devices are;

1. Low-cost Operation

2. Resource Conservation

3. Improved Efficiency

4. Versatile Application

5. Long-term Sustainability






Examples of smart devices are;

1. Automatic Thermostats

2. Soil Sensors for Unmanned Irrigation

3. Smart Phones

4. Air Quality Sensors

5. Smart Watches






1). Al Nahian, M. S. R.; Biswas, A. P.; Tsou, J. C.; Rahman, H. (2021). "IOT Based Soil Monitoring and Automatic Irrigation System." Available at: https://doi.org/10.21203/rs.3.rs-435834/v1. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

2). Alhamayani, A.; Sun, Q.; Hallinan, K. P. (2022). "An Improved Method to Estimate Savings from Thermal Comfort Control in Residences from Smart Wi-Fi Thermostat Data." Clean Technologies. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3390/cleantechnol4020024. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

3). Dineshkumar, T.; Partheeban, P.; Puviarasi, R. (2021). "Air Quality Monitoring System Based on IoT." Journal of Physics Conference Series 1964(6):062081. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1088/1742-6596/1964/6/062081. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

4). Gretzel, U.; Sigala, M.; Xiang, Z.; Koo, C. (2015). "Smart tourism: foundations and developments." Electronic Markets 25(3). Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12525-015-0196-8. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

5). Huang, K.; Hallinan, K. P.; Lou, R.; Alanezi, A. M.; Alshatshati, S.; Sun, Q. (2020). "Self-Learning Algorithm to Predict Indoor Temperature and Cooling Demand from Smart WiFi Thermostat in a Residential Building." Sustainability. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3390/su12177110. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

6). Kim, S. C.; Lim, S. C. (2015). "Transferring Data from Smartwatch to Smartphone through Mechanical Wave Propagation." Sensors (Basel). 2015 Aug 28;15(9):21394-406. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3390/s150921394. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

7). Yin, H.; Cao, Y.; Marelli, B.; Zeng, X.; Mason, A. J.; Cao, C. (2021). "Soil Sensors and Plant Wearables for Smart and Precision Agriculture." Adv Mater. 2021 May;33(20):e2007764. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1002/adma.202007764. (Accessed 18 January 2023).

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