The Internet of Things: Unlocking the language potential

What is Internet of Things?

Increasingly, we are hearing this new techy buzzword that is going to change our lives. You may have heard of it already whilst surfing the internet or various social media channels. Anyone and everyone is talking about it and it is one of the hottest topics in the world of technology and business at the moment.

So what exactly is the “Internet of Things” (IoT)?

According to the experts, this next revolution in digital technology is; “A global, immersive, invisible, ambient networked computing environment built through the continued proliferation of smart sensors, cameras, software, databases, and massive data centres in a world-spanning information fabric known as the Internet of Things” (Source: Pew Research

Translated into English, it ultimately means all the gadgets we use to communicate today and all the household objects, lifestyle items and all other “Things” we will use in the future, will be connected to the internet, interacting with one another without human intervention, apart from the one time when we want to reap the benefits of its core feature.

So, your fridge will communicate with your smartphone – telling you it’s out of milk, your house will heat up / cool down – when it knows you’re nearby and your alarm will buzz earlier in the morning – because it knows the weather is terrible and traffic is expected on route to work. At present, we sense that IoT is set to cover many segments and types of devices including; wearables, household gadgets and appliances, energy saving devices, healthcare and medical equipment, sensors, vehicles, consumer devices, and everything in between.

According to CISCO, the worldwide leader in networking, connectivity and all things communication, IoT is going to connect 25 billion devices by 2015, and 50 billion by 2020 (Source: Furthermore, according to IT research agency, International Data Corporation (IDC), this escalating global IoT market is going to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020 (Source:

Who is it going to effect?

It is expected that Marketing, Retail, Automotive, Gaming, Manufacturing, Communications, Healthcare and Security sectors will be the first group of industries to really grasp the idea of the IoT. These sectors have historically promoted technical and digital changes in their sectors and have been at the forefront of adaptation when it comes to new technology.

Language requirements set to increase

More and more devices are becoming connected, but will they speak the same language?

Six billion people worldwide already communicate with each other in various different languages through the use of mobile phones. With experts talking about the coming of IoT, the mind boggles when you imagine how important language will become when there are 50 billion interconnected objects.

To enable barrier-free access, language and translation solutions will need to be incorporated in all IoT devices. Organisations across the world are already working on ways to bring IoT to life for their customers, moulding devices where users will be able to interact with machines in near-natural language and gesture – Just look at Apple’s SIRI.

With the requirement of technology to interact with humans and deliver a pleasant user experience, there is certainly going to be a need for Localisation and Transcreation of IoT devices. With the pace of change in technology accelerating and the amount of online content set to multiply exponentially, real-time translation will have to be super-fast, if not instant.

The Missing Link – Machine Translation?

With global brands looking to grow and reach audiences around the world in more than just the English language, what is going to be the solution? How will the Language Industry respond? Perhaps Machine Translation can help?

Within the world of translation, the move to automation has already begun with Machine Translation – an indispensable tool for smart interaction between people and machines. Consequently, we forecast that the requirement for Machine Translation will greatly increase as the demand for IoT devices increases across the globe.

With such an inherent requirement for multilingual natural language processing, advancement in Machine Translation is going to be crucial. Yes, Machine Translation Solutions will have to become more intelligent; however the building blocks are already in place to cater for the advancement of the online interactive society.

Find out more about Machine Translation and the various different solutions offered by Capita Translation and Interpreting.

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