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10 Innovative Ways Businesses Are Using IoT & Hardware

TechUK recently published a report on accelerating IoT adoption, commenting that “Driving the adoption of the IoT in the UK is critical to improving productivity, supercharging the economy and creating a smarter state.”

We agree! Here are 10 businesses already using IoT and hardware in the UK, showing how companies from vastly different industries can take advantage of emerging technologies.

1. Amazon introduced their Dash Button in the UK last year, recently doubling the number of branded buttons available. This is a Wi-Fi connected device enabling Amazon Prime customers to instantly re-order their favourite products, at the push of a button.

2. … the Amazon Dash Wand came soon after, allowing you to say or scan a product to add it to your basket. It’s Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enabled, and works with products on Amazon Fresh as well as Amazon UK.

3. Our very own Athletec developed Corner, the smart boxing tracker, using the facilities at Eagle Labs Salford to refine the look and feel of the product. Their boxing wearable gives full insight into performance, tracking improvements in punch rate, speed and power. A pair of unobtrusive, wireless trackers connect to your smartphone, giving real time data and identifying trends.

Athletec Eagle Lab Corner

4. Pingbell describe their product as “a bike bell smarter than the rest”. It uses Bluetooth to automatically save the location of your bike, tell you how close you are, and allow cyclists to “ping” their bike to ring the bell, helping them to find it faster. The app lets you keep track of multiple Pingbells and even share their location.

5. BaDoom‘s multi-sensory, technology-enabled musical tools are another example out of Eagle Lab Salford. Director Rachael Moat used the maker space 3D printers to develop prototypes of her interactive sensory objects, designed for children with complex learning difficulties.

6. The BBC’s Playlist button is a physical app for media discovery. Part of the BBC’s R&D department’s work on connected devices/IoT, the button allows listeners to add music they love from BBC Radio straight to Playlister, using Bluetooth and WiFi.

BBC Playlist button IoT

7. Trackener is a wearable with a major difference – it’s for horses! The connected device can monitor health, analyse activity, and give real-time alerts in case of critical issues. Sensors can be placed in a comfortable bib for the field or stable, or girth strap during exercise. The device sends data to an app using GSM communication through 2G or 3G networks.

8. Digital Catapult have worked with ZSL (Zoological Society of London) to develop IoT-enabled anti-poaching technology. Connected sensors could detect human activity close to wildlife populations, alerting conservationists who are monitoring the area. Sophie Maxwell, conservation technology lead at ZSL said “The Internet of Things has exciting potential to make wildlife conservation more efficient than ever before”

ZSL iot anti poaching devices

9. The TYM Otoscope is a smartphone-connected device designed to visualise the inside of the ear, easily show images to patients, and securely store images or videos for treatment monitoring. Designed for use by healthcare professionals, it allows them to get remote second opinions from colleagues, as well as integrating with their Electronic Medical Records (EMR) systems.

10. Scottish company iOpt developed a device that monitors the internal environment of properties, to predict and prevent damage. Landlords and housing associations can get data on mould prediction, air quality, and heating system failures, allowing for early warnings and proactive maintenance.


Interested in exploring how your business can use the Internet of Things, hardware, 3D printing and fabrication? Book now for an IoT and Hardware workshop, fully funded for Greater Manchester SMEs by the ERDF. You’ll work on two hands-on projects which will provide an introduction to IoT and hardware concepts, as well as get to grips with how Eagle Lab can support you in prototyping and developing products to bring your technology into the physical world. See upcoming dates and book via Eventbrite