4 min read

Lately, IoT is beginning to play an integral part in various industries, be it at the consumer-level, or at the enterprise side of it. With a lot of big players like Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Google entering this market, IoT adoption has scaled tremendously. It is said to have jumped from a hobbyist level to an industry infrastructure where everything functions on smart devices, that can talk.

The bulk release of popular IoT products prove that this market is getting bigger and a lot of individuals have been amazed with home automation products such as Amazon Alexa, Apple Homepod, Google Home and others. These devices are one of the most sought-after things for hobbyist and enthusiasts who are interested to do simple automation with sensors.

Following are 5 IoT projects ideas that you can build without a hole in the pocket. To learn how to actually build similar kind of projects, check out our books;

Internet of Things with Raspberry Pi 3

Smart Internet of Things Projects

Raspberry Pi 3 Home Automation Projects

Weather control station

This project will not only help you measure the room temperature but will also help you measure the altitude and the pressure in the room. For this project you will need the Adafruit Starter Pack for Windows 10 IoT Core on the latest Raspberry Pi kit. Along with the Raspberry Pi Kit you will also be using other sensors that read temperature, pressure, and altitude. To make your weather station advanced, you can connect the device to your cloud account to store the weather data.

Hardware

  • Raspberry Pi 2 or 3
  • Breadboard
  • Adafruit BMP280 Barometric Pressure & Altitude Sensor

Software

  • Windows 10 IoT Core

Approximate total cost

Less than $60

Facial Recognition Door

Self-built home security projects are some of the most popular DIY projects because they can be cheaper and simple compared to bulky professional installations. Here’s a project that controls entry access using facial recognition, thanks to Microsoft Project Oxford. This project from Mazudo, based on Raspberry Pi and Windows IoT, is posted on Hackster.io. This is a handy project for DIY enthusiasts who want to build a quick security lock for their homes.

Hardware

Raspberry Pi 3

Breadboard

USB camera

Relay switch

Speaker

Software

Windows 10 IoT Core

Approximate total cost

Less than $50

Your very own Alexa Echo

Alexa Echo has always been a handy device, which can take notes, schedule reminders for your appointments, and play podcasts for you. Brilliant, isn’t it?  You can build a fully functional customized Alexa Echo with all the features of Alexa, apart from accessing official music servers like Amazon prime. It will also have an integration with recently included third party apps like todoist and Any.do. This DIY Echo can also be connected to your cell phone devices to manage notifications when the timer goes off, and so on. Only one thing that your DIY will be missing is the ability to function as a bluetooth speaker.

Hardware

Raspberry Pi 3

Breadboard

USB speaker and mic

Software

Raspbian

Approximate total cost

Less than $50

Pet Feeder

You surely don’t want your pet to starve when you’re away, do you? This customized pet feeder is controlled via the internet; set timings and feed your pet automatically later. These pet feeders are directly connected to WiFi using ESP8266 chip. We can easily add features like controlling the device using cell phone and making dashboards using Freeboard. This project can be later upgraded or rightly reprogrammed to fill your snack bowl at regular intervals as well.

Hardware

Arduino

PIR motion sensor

ESP8266 ESP-01

Software

Arduino IDE

ESP8266Flasher.exe

Approximate total cost

Less than $40

Video Surveillance Robot

Video surveillance is a process of monitoring a scenario, person or an environment as a whole. A video surveillance robot can capture the activities happening in the surrounding where it is deployed and can be controlled using a GUI Interface. For further enhancements, you can even connect your device to the cloud and save the recorded data there.

Hardware

Raspberry Pi

ARM Cortex- A7 CPU

L293 motor driver

Software

Raspbian

Approximate total cost

Less than $50

These are few economical yet highly useful Internet of Things projects, which can be leveraged to improve your daily activities.

Still not convinced?. Think of it this way. Buying the microchip board is a one time investment as it can be reused in separate projects. The sensors and other peripherals aren’t that expensive.

You might say, it’s just way easier to buy an IoT device. I would argue that, buying an IoT device is not as satisfying as building one for the same purpose. In the end, there are multiple advantages of building one as you can brag about it to your friends and most importantly include it in your resume to give you that edge over others in an interview.

Read Next

Cognitive IoT: How Artificial Intelligence is remoulding Industrial and Consumer IoT

Windows 10 IoT Core: What you need to know

5 reasons to choose AWS IoT Core for your next IoT project

 


Subscribe to the weekly Packt Hub newsletter. We'll send you the results of our AI Now Survey, featuring data and insights from across the tech landscape.

* indicates required