Apr 25, 2016

Surf’s Up! Keeping Cool This Summer with 4G LTE and the IoT: Part 1

It’s time to dust off those grills, break out the shorts and put the air conditioners back in the windows — summer is coming. In addition to the backyard barbeques, outdoor activities and longer days, there’s one other thing we can count on with the arrival of summer — the scorching heat.

According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, over the last decade, we’ve had the five hottest years in recorded history. And thanks to El Nino, this summer could surpass them all.

For many of us making plans to enjoy the summer sun, staying close to our favorite swimming spot is paramount. For some that might mean a trip to the beach; for others, staying home and relaxing by the pool. Whichever option you prefer, you can rest assured knowing that you’ll be prepared thanks to new innovations made possible by 4G LTE and the Internet of Things.

Those of us who enjoy the privacy and convenience of having a pool in their backyard, have a new ally at their disposal. Sutro is a newly developed smart pool chemistry monitor that will make sure the only thing you need to worry about this summer is your backstroke. The smart sensor, floating surreptitiously in the pool, constantly monitors water quality. Thanks to 4G LTE connectivity, the sensor can communicate with a smartphone to provide real-time updates on chemical measurements (pH, chlorine, temperature and more), so we always know exactly how to treat the pool. It also helps to monitor the supply inventory, place orders, and schedule technician visits — all from a mobile device.

For those who prefer the beach, there’s an app for that too. The National Ocean Service has leveraged its network of oceanic sensors to provide a catalog of applications for beach-goers, enabling easy access to real-time weather data, as well as information about tides, currents and extreme weather conditions. As surfers and recreational sailors know only too well, Ocean conditions can change moment to moment, so the reports read from home may be obsolete by the time one gets to the beach. If a course needs to be changed, the strength of 4G LTE can be relied on to transmit the latest data to a mobile device in real-time.

Whether at home by the pool or out at sea, the IoT with 4G LTE connectivity is providing the means to stay cool and safe to make the most of the summer.