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What is M2M for the Internet of Things?

Back to Blog  •  Posted on May 27, 2014 by admin


For the longest time, the Internet was composed of clients and servers that made up the majority of everything. For every person that accessed the Internet, there was one client machine that accessed a comparatively smaller population of servers.

As technology has evolved, the idea that people are responsible for creating things has been replaced by the fact that more and more machines are creating things for other machines. Statistics, data and even services are being created by machines with technology like cloud computing for other machines to use.

The “Internet of Things” addresses this as the idea of machine-to-machine (M2M) networking. It states that any one “thing” that can be connected to the Internet can be connected by a machine. This can be something as simple as a microprocessor that monitors the condition of a package to something as extravagant as the servers that deliver content for your favorite social networking website.

The concept behind M2M is that machines will communicate with each other in groups referred to as “Sensors”, then that group will be connected to a larger network that machines can access as they need data. This allows for the location of data to be anywhere while appearing seamlessly on one virtual layer as if it were stored on one gigantic server.

The main idea that makes M2M communication different from the server-client communication most people are familiar with is the fact that machines will be allowed to communicate with each other as much as they are engineered to do so. This paves the way for devices to perform routine but essential functions like turning on street lamps when a “Thing” states that there’s a live person connected to it. This “Thing” can then be anything, including a wallet, a mobile device or even a wristwatch.

The communication between machines should then occur seamlessly without the need for a human operator to do anything. A human operator, however, should be able to intervene so that any conflicting or malicious “Things” can be disconnected from the network until they can be repaired.

M2M represents a new revolution for communication that utilizes the Internet. No longer will things occur on a simple client-server basis, but they will instead exist as individual interactions between the various machines connected to the Internet. This allows for the various processes that make up these communications to occur on as many machines as it takes rather than one or two centralized computers.