There can be a lot of confusing information about the Internet of Things. It's a big topic for sure, and there are plenty of varying predictions and definitions.

So to understand the topic just a little bit better, let's take quick look at four main areas of this technology: the total amount of devices, market size, industries being affected, and which areas of the world are incorporating Internet of Things, or IoT, technologies.

One of the biggest proponents of the Internet of Things, Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO), says that in the next five years we could see a total of 50 billion IoT connections, with a potential market size reaching $19 trillion in the next decade.

Not everyone agrees with those predictions, but that doesn't mean the opportunity isn't huge. General Electric (NYSE:GE) says that just a 1% increase in Industrial Internet (part of the Internet of Things) efficiencies will bring massive cost savings in the healthcare, transportation, and oil and gas industries.

Click through the slide show below to get a better picture of where the Internet of Things is now -- and where it's headed in a just a few short years.

Chris Neiger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Cisco Systems. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and General Electric Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.