Rethink IoT News ATW 189: Around The Web Roundup

Editor’s Note: Riot ATW is now only available to Paid and Trial subscriptions. It is no longer available to free subscribers.

// M&A, Strategies, Alliances //

  • AspenTech has acquired RtTech Software’s Cipher IIoT assets, a cloud-native software and edge connectivity offering that Aspen will use to further its asset optimization portfolio.

  • Silicon Labs is buying Sigma Designs for $282m, adding the Z-Wave creator to its IoT portfolio. At a 26% premium, should the deal fall through, SL will buy Z-Wave for $240m.

  • CVS is acquiring Aetna for $69bn, adding the health insurance company to its pharmacies – a platform that CVS is using in experiments in telehealth and digitalization.

// Laws, Regulation, and Lawsuits //

  • The US FAA has released a study regarding the risk of drone impacts on airplanes, which found a much lower risk level than a controversial UK government study.

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

  • The Smart Manufacturing market will be worth $395.2bn by 2025, according to Grand View Research, with a growing emphasis on production efficiency and improved visibility.

  • The Wi-SUN Alliance has found that half of all organizations undertaking IoT projects have a fully implemented strategy in place, with oil and gas leading the way. However, security, lack of funding, and commitment remain the biggest concerns.

// Hardware //

  • Avnet has unveiled its next-gen Trusted Platform Module (TPM), the V2.0 Pmod, aimed at providing hardware Root-of-Trust (RoT), based on the Optiga SLB9670.

  • Renesas has expanded its IoT Sandbox dev kit lineup, adding the new RX65N WiFi Cloud Connectivity Kit, based on its RX65N MCU.

  • Riot Micro has unveiled the RM1000 chip, an NB-IoT and LTE-M baseband chip that it claims has minuscule power consumption and could enable the sub-$5 modules needed.

  • Qualcomm has announced the Snapdragon 845 SoC, claiming new capabilities for on-device AI processing, and pointing to Eliptic Labs’ gesture technology as a good demonstration.

  • Dialog Semiconductor has announced two new Power Management ICs (PMICs), the DA9230 and DA9231, aimed at IoT devices, which it says are the smallest on the market.

// Networks, Protocols, & Wireless //

  • Adveez and Eleven-X have launched a LoRa pilot for GPS tracking of airport cargo, in Canada, using French company Adveez’s sensors and Eleven-X’s network.

  • Sagemcom and Ooredoo have collaborated to launch what they say is the first IoT network in Tunisia, using LoRa equipment from Sagemcom and Ooredoo’s MNO expertise.

  • Fujitsu has unveiled what it says is the world’s smallest Sigfox sensor, which eliminates the need for battery replacement via a solar cell. It has a range of 7km, when sending temperature readings every ten minutes to Fujitsu’s K5 IoT Platform PaaS.

  • Vodafone Romania has connected some of OMV Petrom’s oil and gas infrastructure using NB-IoT sensors, as part of a trial that might see strong adoption from the company.

  • Kore has launched its Kore Connect offering in Europe, for turn-key managed LTE connectivity, provided via carriage agreements and Kore gateways and routers.

  • MTN has picked Cisco Jasper to power its new IoT services, deploying the Jasper Control Center to support the African MNO’s back-end management for IoT connectivity.

  • MTS has launched an IoT device management platform, ahead of its roll out of LTE-M and NB-IoT in Russia. It says it will strengthen its presence with open source platforms too.

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

  • Google has announced that its AutoML system has created its own ‘fully functional AI child,’ called NASNet, capable of outperforming human-built AI systems.

  • Microsoft has launched IoT Central, an Azure-based ‘low code’ service for building IoT applications on its cloud platform, for connecting back-end services.

  • Solace has launched its new messaging service, Solace Cloud, aimed at microservice and IoT developers that need an enterprise messaging system but don’t want to build one.

  • Tencent warns that there are between 200k-300k AI engineers worldwide, but that the market demand is for millions of workers.

  • IBM’s Watson is on the verge of a big step forward for pharmaceutical development, with new capabilities to model organic chemistry that could one day slash research costs.

  • SoftBank and Inuitive, a fabless Israeli semiconductor developer, are collaborating on AI and 3D-sensing, planning to integrate machine vision processors with SoftBank platforms.

  • IBM has launched its Power9 server offerings, using its chips to run Linux instances for machine-learning applications, integrating with Nvidia’s GPU offerings via NVLink 2.0.

  • Baidu and Qualcomm will work to pair Baidu’s DuerOS conversational AI system with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 845 SoC, aiming for better phones and IoT applications.

  • Tesla CEO Elon Musk says the company is working on its own AI chips, for use in its self-driving vehicles, telling attendees at a Tesla party at the NIPS conference.

// Smart Homes and Buildings //

  • Ikea and Sonos have announced a partnership to develop ‘future home sound experiences,’ although there are no confirmed devices or road maps, yet.

  • Y-Cam has had to cancel its free cloud recording deal for its home cameras, after saying it has become unsustainable. There will now be a £3 per-camera monthly subscription.

// Industrial & Manufacturing //

  • Kobe Steel and Nissan Motor are both responding to data falsification scandals with investments in IoT technologies to prevent record tampering in their production lines.

// Automotive //

  • VW’s Moia division has revealed a six-seater electric minibus, with a claimed RV range of 300km (186-miles). It will be used in a ride-sharing app for Hamburg.

  • Researchers in Applied Energy have published findings that suggests EVs are cheaper to own and run than gasoline cars in the US, UK, and Japan – but subsidies still warp pricing.

  • Intel says the new Mobileye EyeQ5 machine-vision chip will provide 24 trillion operations per second, at a 10W power consumption – double both numbers previously declared.

  • GM has launched Dashboard, a new service that lets drivers make payments from their vehicles – turning GM cars into potential points-of-sale for business partners.

  • Nissan has begun self-driving tests on Tokyo’s roads, using a modified Q50 sports sedan to test its next-gen ProPilot tech that is scheduled for arrival in its 2020 portfolio.

  • GM is reportedly planning on launching a self-driving taxi fleet in the US in 2019, according to reports from the WSJ, charging as little as a dollar per-mile.

  • Qualcomm and BlackBerry have announced a partnership to optimize Qualcomm’s automotive hardware and Snapdragon modems with BlackBerry’s QNX software.

  • Lyft and nuTonomy (Delphi, now Aptiv) will begin their self-driving partnership with a pilot launch in Boston, where Lyft customers will have a chance of riding in the car.

// Security //

  • Centri’s Atonomi division has launched Atonomi Network, an Ethereum-based blockchain system for providing immutable ID and trust services for IoT devices.

  • Apple’s HomeKit was exploitable for a brief period in iOS 11.2, allowing unauthorized control of smart home devices. A server-side fix has been issued, and clients will be patched.

// Smart Grid & Utility //

  • DEPsys has been picked by Swiss utility Romande Energie, to provide its GridEye smart grid balancing and analytics software-based system for Switzerland’s first smart grid.

  • National Grid has confirmed that multiple gigawatts of battery storage assets have cleared the first hurdle in the process of bidding in upcoming Capacity Market auctions.

  • NEXTracker has unveiled a new network-edge battery design, moving away from its previous flow battery design to a container-housed Lithium-Ion design from parent Flext.

  • Nokia has been picked by Kansas City Power & Light to supply its Wavence microwave packet radio tech for KCP&L’s grid in northeast MI and eastern KS, for 800,000 customers.

// Health //

  • AliveCor has won the first US FDA clearance for the first Apple Watch accessory – its KardiaBand watch strap that can provide a 30-second ECG scan for wearers.