The Internet of Things has received plenty of hype over the past few years but we’re yet to see any solid evidence of it making its way into real life. That could be set to change from later this year if a UK and Switzerland-based startup called Evrythng has its way,

The Internet of Things refers to the idea that any physical object could have a connection to the Internet. Imagine streetlights that are able to tell you the current temperature of the part of the city you want to visit, park benches that tell you from afar if there’s a spot free to eat your lunch, or secondhand bikes with their complete ownership and service histories stored in the cloud and updated in real-time.

Backed by Niklas Zennström’s Atomico Ventures, Evrythng is set to launch a platform that allows any object to have an online presence. As co-founders Niall Murphy and Andy Hobsbawm put it, the company is in the business of “Digital augmentation that activates digital identities for physical objects.”

“The Internet of Things is well understood but overwhelming,” says CMO Hobsbawm. “How do you build a secure engine where people can give digital identities to products?” If you’re Evrythng, you allow manufacturers or other third parties the ability to create unique identifiers for physical objects that are tied to online ‘profiles’.

What will you be able to do with it?

Via their online presences, Evrythng-enabled objects will be able to have all sorts of data associated with them, whether entered manually or updated automatically via sensors attached to the objects themselves.

Examples? As Evrythng’s own site suggests:

“Your Nikon D90 might, with your permission, suggest times and place to get the best photos: “19th November looks like a clear night with a full moon– go to the foot of Tate Britain at 7.15 for the perfect night shot of St. Paul’s Cathedral…

“Perhaps your sunburst Gibson Custom ES-330L (not just that type of guitar, but yours specifically) could let you specify the band you’d like to form and then connect you with other musicians near you who are at the same level of ability and play the other instruments in that band’s line-up.

“This data could also integrate with 3rd party apps – like a special deal with a bus company to do a tour of Devon for a group of Muse fans with Manson guitars like Matt Bellamy.”

While this kind of real-world augmentation has been discussed by futurists for years, Evythng wants to be the platform that enables it all to happen by providing a trusted system for identities for objects.

At present, the startup is talking to a range of manufacturers of consumer goods with the aim to bring Evrythng-enabled products to market later this year. There’s also a closed beta developer program in progress. For now, you can read more about what it has planned on its website.

➤ Evrythng