Digitization and Industry 4.0 have been buzzwords in recent years, and have been regularly featured in media reports. The Internet has fundamentally changed many areas of everyday life and the professional world. In the meantime, the penetration is so great that digital media are used quite naturally in some cases. But: digitalisation also has its dark sides. The more hardware and software penetrate everyday life, the greater the demands on data and consumer protection. Aspects that companies and developers will have to face in the future as well. But how will our everyday life change in detail? What innovations are yet to come and what should we keep in mind when using them?
Where digitization begins depends very much on the individual perception of the individual person. Digital media are particularly noticeable when it comes to communication between people. Social media have been shaping people’s user experience on the Internet for years. Analyses of user behavior show that a high proportion of Internet users have set up their first social media profile before the age of 25. According to the major study Digitalization 2020 by Dr. Hubertus Porschen GmbH, 47 percent of users even have their first social media account before the age of 18.
In the following age groups, the proportion drops rapidly. This shows that the number of Internet users is concentrated in the age group under 45.
In what form are digital media used today? The answer holds certain surprises. Particularly with the expansion of the network, which is being driven forward more and more, multimedia use should actually set the tone – at least that is what is expected. In the above-mentioned study, however, it turns out that many users are first to:
- Messenger and
To fall back on. Of course, Facebook is the undisputed leader in social networks.
Media use in the form of video platforms or photo networks, which include Instagram and YouTube, is still relevant for about half of Internet users. What is interesting in the classification of the overall picture is that the use of messengers seems to have the greatest relevance to the target group.
The heavy use of digital media via the Internet can be viewed from different points of view. One important reason is probably the way in which users in the various age groups communicate using digital media. Especially the age group up to 30 years prefers online contact – because the first step is considered easier here. In the group of under 20-year-olds, the proportion of users who see the Internet and digital media in this way is even around two-thirds.
Smart Home: The intelligent home
One of the areas that has made a huge leap forward in recent years is smart home technology. It is not only the development leaps that are enormous here. The technology has gained in terms of distribution and acceptance. But: In this area, the potential of digitization is not only evident.
An increasing number of data scandals and hacker attacks very clearly underline that digitization and its increasing penetration of everyday business and private life. Despite some recent negative examples – such as hijacked baby monitors – there seems to be no way around the smart home in the long term. Currently, practical concepts are focusing primarily on digital assistance. This means: Smart Home is primarily used to efficiently manage everyday life and resources.
Virtual assistants and more security: Applications in the smart home
The whole thing can be explained particularly well with a few examples. Digital assistants with voice control – such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant – are primarily designed to provide more convenience. The digital assistants can, for example.
- conclude orders on demand
- announce the weather
- help with the organization of appointments.
At the same time, their users already have the possibility of coupling different smart home devices with each other. In this way, the light in their own four walls can be controlled or the heating can be perfectly adjusted to the weather.
But mart Home can do much more. Intelligently linked with each other, it offers the possibility of setting up efficient home automation structures or security systems. Here, for example, motion detectors, video systems and remote alarm systems interact directly – to transmit a silent alarm to the smartphone of the owner or a security service.
But the technology can be taken much further. In the future, it will be possible for the kitchen to do its own shopping and for delivery services to simply bring the necessary food directly to the front door.