With constant developments in mobile technology, the recent release of the Apple Watch and the popularity of Google’s Nest, the future of object connection is becoming a clear reality. It may seem like designers and inventors are taking a page out of a Jetsons episode, but that fantasy is now, and only growing by the day.

The Internet of Things, otherwise known as the IoT refers to the application of connectivity to objects that connect with each other such as watches, eyeglasses, cars, coffee pots – pretty much anything that can be imagined. Much of the current IoT market is seen as home automation systems and wearables.

To help simplify this interconnection – the method of connection is identified with RFID (or radio frequency identification) – though it can include other channels such as QR codes, sensors and wireless. An object is ‘tagged’, allowing the data management and control by a user through the internet. Objects can then work together without constant monitoring by the user. When these connected objects work in tandem, it is known as ‘ambient intelligence’.

It’s clear that the IoT is appealing to the end consumer to create a seamless connected lifestyle, but with a highly mobile workforce and and supply chain demands, the IoT is appealing to many organizations looking to highly automate.

With an estimation of 50 billion devices connected to the web by 2020, strides forward in development are critical to the ‘future that is now’ and conversations about the UX and UI of the IoT population are beginning to take shape.

As technologically advanced as the IoT is, the user will at ultimately still be at the helm. In order to adequately serve the user, this fantasy so in reach will need to be handled with useful design and attention to usability.