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Did you know that as of the end of 2019 there are over 9.5 Billion active IoT devices? And if you think that’s crazy, it’s forecasted that we’ll see over 28 Billion active IoT devices by 2025.
So who is responsible for all of these IoT devices?
Well, you can thank…
- ThyssenKrupp for their 100,000 connected elevators that are connected to the cloud, where sensors transmit maintenance data like acceleration, vibration, acoustics, and frequency;
- Tesla for its 500,000 connected cars, globally;
- Amazon (AWS Ground Station) for the 3,236 satellites making connectivity possible; and,
- A bunch of makers, hackers, and companies currently working on IoT devices.
That’s why it’s important to learn about the Internet of Things by taking online courses.
As the world becomes more data-driven and technology-focused, it’s no surprise that you’d want to learn more about the Internet of Things (IoT). In this article, we’re going to explore the ultimate list of IoT courses online for 2020.
IoT courses range in difficulty from beginner to advanced, so I recommend choosing a course that best fits your technical ability.
Depending on whether your goal is to be strategic or tactical, you may want to learn how to code and work with sensors.
What is the Internet of Things?
Before we dive into the world of IoT courses, what is the Internet of Things?
The Internet of Things is a network of interrelated devices that transfer data about their current state or key metrics.
As a result, we can obtain a whole bunch of data that can be used for preventative maintenance, machine learning, and artificial intelligence.
But, the purpose of IoT isn’t to just collect data to have data. The goal is to collect data that can be used to understand key performance indicators for how a system is working.
3 Common IoT applications
Consumer products including home automation and smart home devices rapidly exploded last year for the Internet of Things.
So if you’re wondering where IoT devices come into play, they’re practically everywhere.
1. Smart Homes and Home Automation
Smart home and home automation systems are a key sector in IoT. If you’re interested in learning how these devices work or want to build a custom system, then taking an IoT course makes sense.
2. Manufacturing and Industrial
The fourth Industrial revolution is responsible for a lot of IoT growth in manufacturing.
Machines are becoming “smarter” in the sense that they can notify staff when routine maintenance needs to happen and provide data about how efficient the process is.
With all of this data, machines will run on a complete feedback loop, so they’ll be able to adjust their performance based on key metrics read by IoT sensors.
3. Big Data Applications
Collecting data for analytics, preventative maintenance, and optimizing equipment. Tesla uses IoT to send data points to their servers to log performance and mileage.Every large factory operation wants to find ways to optimize their processes. An efficient and optimized process results in a higher yield, greater margins, and less waste.
If you’re on a team that manages production or business strategy, deploying IoT sensors in the field can provide you with millions of data points that can be analyzed for process optimization.
IoT Online Courses for Beginners
Are you new to the Internet of Things field? I recommend starting with the beginner-level Internet of Things online courses.
These courses are designed for people who don’t have any experience with IoT but want to gain skills within the IoT industry.
Here are my picks for the best beginner IoT courses online.
1. Coventry University: The Internet of Things: The Rise of Connected Devices: Explore the rapidly evolving world of IoT and learn the impact of IoT on home and industrial automation. (FutureLearn)
2. Google Cloud: Industrial IoT on Google Cloud Platform: Learn the Industrial IoT network architecture from sensors and devices to analysis. (Coursera)
3. The University of California, Irvine: Introduction to the Internet of Things and Embedded Systems: Learn the importance of IoT in society, the current components of typical IoT devices. (Coursera)
Like most subjects, don’t skip the beginner courses if you don’t have a background in coding, electronics, or networking. If you rush to intermediate or advanced IoT courses, you will be thoroughly confused.
Top-Rated Internet of Things Courses Online on Udemy
Udemy is an affordable online platform where you can learn just about anything. Anyone can become an instructor if they have expertise in the area they’re teaching.
Here’s a list of top-rated Internet of Things courses you can take on Udemy.
Since Udemy is a peer-to-peer learning platform, you won’t see the quality or caliber that professional online courses have. But, you will save some money while learning very niche subjects.
Intermediate IoT Courses Online
If you already have experience with coding and electronic devices, then you may want to check out intermediate IoT online courses.
1. Microsoft’s IoT Analysis: Business Intelligence for IoT Solutions: This course will teach you how to use the latest data visualization tools to create reports using historical and live data. (edX)
2. University System of Georgia: Cyber Security and the Internet of Things: Explore current security and privacy-related topics for the Internet of Things. (Coursera)
3. AWS IoT: Developing and Deploying an Internet of Things: Learn how to build, deploy and analyze secure IoT solutions in the AWS cloud. (edX)
4. ASU: Leading Digital and Data Decision Making: Explore how companies benefit from a digital ecosystem including sensors (IoT), Blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), and augmented reality (AR). (edX)
These courses are designed for people or professionals who want an in-depth experience with the Internet of Things.
Looking for more advanced IoT courses? Try these.
Additionally, if you’re looking for advanced IoT offerings, then you’ll want to try these online courses.
1. Microsoft: Processing Real-Time Data Streams in Azure: Learn how to use Microsoft Azure technologies to process real-time data in the cloud. (edX)
2. ITMO University: Data Management, Data Security and Robot Operating System as a Common Tool for IoT: Data management and its security and privacy is an important topic for IoT. (edX)
3. IBM: Advanced Machine Learning and Signal Processing: Use a real-life example from IoT to understand Advanced Machine Learning concepts. (Coursera)
4. EIT Digital: Capstone: Autonomous Runway Detection for IoT: This course is a capstone project that combines topics from three IoT courses: Development of Real-Time Systems, Web Connectivity & Security and Embedded Hardware and Operating Systems. (Coursera)
Once you start taking advanced IoT courses, you may want to consider enrolling in a degree program or specialization. If you’re a professional looking to add the Internet of Things to your resume, then having a certificate can make all the difference in getting promoted or stepping into a strategic role.
Internet of Things Degrees and Specializations
If IoT is part of your five-year career plan, then you may want to focus on getting a degree, professional certification, or specialization in the Internet of Things.
Going back to school full-time may not be in the cards (especially if you’re a working professional), but taking an online course a few hours each day might be more realistic.
In this section, you can find the best picks for the Internet of Things online degree programs, specializations, and professional certifications.
1. UC San Diego: Internet of Things Specialization: Learn the creation of Internet of Things products and services by building your Internet of Things. (Coursera)
2. University of Colorado Boulder: Developing Industrial Internet of Things Specialization: Master the key skills required to be employed in the Industrial Internet of Things space. (Coursera)
3. Yonsei University: Emerging Technologies: From Smartphones to IoT to Big Data Specialization: Master advanced technologies and market trends to lead future R&D and business. (Coursera)
4. Curtin University: Program on the Internet of Things (IoT): Graduate-level instruction focused on generating IoT concepts and devices. (edX)
While there is an upfront investment in the Internet of Things online courses and programs, some companies will cover part (or all) of this. And even if you do have to pay out of pocket, you’ll usually see a return once you finish because of a promotion or a salary boost!
Why should you learn the Internet of Things?
You should learn the Internet of Things if any of the following scenarios apply:
1. You’re interested in connected devices or the field of IoT;
2. Your job requires expertise in IoT for data analytics or factory automation;
3. You want to create a custom home automation system; or,
4. You have an idea for a new IoT/IIoT device that warrants education in the field.
Of course, there are probably other reasons why you should learn IoT.
I typically like to go off of both personal and professional interests when deciding whether or not I should learn something.
Why learn something that isn’t relevant to or interesting in your life or career?
Are you looking to get into the IoT field?
The Internet of Things is a really interesting and high-tech field that will see rapid expansion in the next five years.
With the growth estimated at 18.5 Billion devices over the next five years, you can expect to see the need for IoT Engineers grow as well.
If you’re considering a career in the Internet of Things, I think it’s worth taking a few of these online courses to prep yourself for the impending IoT wave.
The sooner you understand the fundamentals of IoT, the technicalities of how to configure IoT devices, and the methodology for networking two different types of devices together, the better.
Even if you’re not looking to change careers, building a few IoT devices and getting them working is fascinating (and a lot of fun). I encourage you to take a look at some projects and set one up for yourself.
What Internet of Things courses online have you taken? Which ones are you planning to take? Be sure to comment on your experience below.
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If you want to design IoT devices, be sure to check out some of these projects on Learn Robotics: