Rethink IoT News ATW 178: Around The Web Roundup

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// M&A, Strategies, Alliances //

  • Itron is buying Silver Spring Networks for $830m, net of some $118m (!) that Silver Spring had in the bank, adding the Wi-SUN advocate to Itron’s extensive smart grid portfolio.

  • The Trusted IoT Alliance has launched, focused on blockchain-enabled IoT apps – founded by Bosch, BNY Mellon, Cisco, Gemalto, and US Bank, and smaller blockchain companies.

  • Hitachi has combined its Data Systems, Insight Group, and Pentaho divisions into a new subsidiary – called Vantara, which will broadly tackle IoT and IT-OT projects.

  • Comcast has acquired Stringify, the developer that built its xFI service. Stringify provides a rival to the IFTTT automation platform, and Comcast will be using it in its Xfinity Home.

  • Canyon Bridge is acquiring Imagination Technologies for $743.2m, a 42% premium. It follows Canyon Bridge being blocked from acquiring Lattice Semi by the US.

// Laws, Regulation, and Lawsuits //

  • Uber will not get a new operations license from TfL. The statement says that the private hire operator license will not be renewed on Sep-30 – following allegations of poor standards.

// Forecasts, Surveys. Reports, and Blue-Sky Thinking //

  • Vehicle analytics will be worth $3.64bn by 2022, according to MarketsandMarkets, growing from around $1.1bn in 2017 at a CAGR of 26.5%.

  • The Embedded Systems Market will hit $110.46bn by 2023, growing at a CAGR of just 4.05% between 2017 and 2023, according to MarketsandMarkets.

// Hardware //

  • Synopsys has launched its new DesignWare ARC IoT dev kit, for ARC-based SoC designs, as well as a deal with Brite Semi to build ultra low power chips with low power leakage.

// Networks, Protocols, & Wireless //

  • Kerlink says it will deploy the largest LoRa network, through a partnership with Tata Communications in India, using 10,000 gateways to reach 400m people.

  • Telstra has switched on its Australian LTE-M (Cat-M1) network, which was upgraded by Ericsson. It has 99% population coverage, but covers around 3m square-kilometers.

  • Orange and EBV Elektronik have partnered to launch Orange’s ‘Live Booster’ program, which ships a prepaid cellular IoT module to developers looking to launch projects.

// Big Data, Cloud, AI, and Machine-Learning //

  • Intel says it is investing $1bn in its AI ecosystem and capital portfolio, including in startups Mighty AI, Data Robot, and Lumiata. The newly defined Nervana portfolio is key to this, and now includes its core Xeon CPUs, FPGAs, and its Mobileye and Movidius silicon.

  • SAS and GE have signed a deal that sees GE Transportation integrate SAS for locomotive IoT data analytics – something we thought GE’s Predix would have been tasked with.

  • Unity has announced that its cross-platform video game physics engine is being opened up for AI and ML developers, with the new Unity Machine Learning Agents.

  • Essity (Tork, TENA) has picked Microsoft’s Azure to power a new IoT platform that the health and hygiene products and solutions provider aims to use for its global operations.

  • Imagination Technologies has unveiled a new Neural Network Accelerator (NNA), called the PowerVR Series2NX, a tech that it thinks will become standard in SoC designs.

  • Deutsche Telekom says it has hit cost savings akin to 800 full-time staff, since pursuing its Robotic Process Automation (RPA) project in 2014, to use software to automate tasks.

// Smart Homes and Buildings //

  • Google has possibly suffered a leak of the design for an upcoming Google Home Mini, a rival to Amazon’s Echo Dot. The $50 puck will probably be launched alongside the Pixel 2.

  • August has launched two new connected door locks, as well as a new video doorbell that has WiFi, Bluetooth, and Z-Wave. The designs are basically updates on its core designs.

  • Nest has launched a security alarm system (Nest Secure), a video doorbell (Nest Hello), and a new outdoor security camera (Nest Cam IQ), in a major product update.

  • Apple’s HomeKit platform is booming, according to the Verge, in a roundup feature.

// Wearables //

  • Amazon is developing Alexa-enabled smart glasses, according to a report from the Financial Times, which will use bone-conduction tech to convey audio to the wearer.

// Industrial & Manufacturing //

  • Sentera has updated its DJI-based Omni quadcopter drone to capture new crop-monitoring data, for agricultural deployments, including thermal, high-res RGB, and NVDI readings.

  • Siemens and QuEST have partnered to create a new digital-twin manufacturing solutions for a bunch of vertical industries, with two new innovation labs in India.

// Retail, Marketing, & Supply Chain //

  • Fleet Complete has picked BlackBerry to provide it with BlackBerry Radar, a transport and logistics management platform, which Fleet Complete will use in its supply chain services.

  • Walmart and August have announced a test program that will see August’s smart door locks admit Walmart delivery persons, to allow packages to be delivered inside an empty home.

// Automotive //

  • Here and Pioneer have invested in each other, in a capital alliance that sees Here acquire around 3% of Pioneer for €17.3m, and Pioneer spending that same amount for <1% of Here.

  • Delphi has picked QNX for its autonomous driving systems, in a commercial agreement to power Delphi’s upcoming Centralized Sensing Localization and Planning (CSLP) tech.

  • has been showing off its new Traffic Jam Pilot feature, in its upcoming A8 saloon.

  • Baidu has announced a new $1bn fund for autonomous driving projects, as well as updating its Apollo open source software platform that it hopes will power some of them.

// Smart Grid & Utility //

  • A trio of YouTubers have shown off the feasibility of DIY alternatives to Tesla’s Powerwall, suggesting that there’s a lot of room in the market for SMB-scale rivals.

  • eMotorWerks and EDF have partnered to deploy eMotorWerks’ JuiceNet V2G charging stations, for charging up EV batteries – another whitelabel win for eMotorWerks. EDF sees the EV market growing rapidly, with its Sodetrel subsidiary’s results impressing.

  • Cyan Connode has won a 1m-unit smart meter deal in Ukraine, working with its partner NIK to supply its narrowband mesh network tech in a $29m deal.

  • Duke Energy is building its first utility-scale battery storage projects in North Carolina, investing some $30m in two projects – a 9MW and 4MW system.

  • Ireland’s Commission for Energy Regulation has announced that 2.3m smart meters will be deployed, covering every home and business, in a €1.2bn scheme, by 2024.

  • Panasonic and Japan’s METI have announced a solar-power microgrid project that will connect 117 homes using PV panels, storage batteries, and control systems from PanaHome.

// Health //

  • Adtran and Ting have announced a partnership that sees them supply gigabit broadband for a smart home, designed to assist individuals living with disabilities, via integrated sensors for analysis and alerts, as well as telehealth (remote healthcare) capabilities.