Rethink IoT News ATW 191: 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 //

  • Zurich Insurance has acquired Bright Box, a Hong Kong-based telematics provider that has a number of OEM and aftermarket automotive telematics customers.
  • Amazon has acquired Blink, a smart home vendor that sells connected video doorbells and security cameras. Blink promises that nothing will change for existing customers.
  • Hubbell has acquired Aclara, a VC-owned smart grid infrastructure provider, for $1.1bn in cash, including its 1,200 staff. Aclara reported $500m revenues in FY2017. Seems fast.
  • Softbank has led a consortium that has bought 17.5% of Uber at $33 per share, valuing the company at $48bn – a painful 30% drop from its $70bn height.

// Laws, Regulation, and Lawsuits //

  • The ECJ has ruled that Uber is a transportation firm, not an information society service, in a decision that is going to have a Europe-wide impact on the way it is regulated.

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

// Hardware //

  • Monnit has announced that its Alta sub-GHz wireless IoT sensors now have global regulatory approval, claiming thousand-foot ranges and ten-year battery lives.
  • Samsung has announced the first OCF 1.3 certified System on Module (SoM), its Artik 05x series of WiFi-enabled chips that Samsung is pushing to IoT developers.
  • Energous has secured an FCC certification for its OTA wireless charging, claiming it as an industry first for its WattUp tech – which is aimed at IoT and mobile devices.
  • Qualcomm has picked Qorvo to supply a front-end power amplifier (PA) for Qualcomm’s Cellular-V2X (C-V2X) automotive chipset – the GaAs HBT PA.

// Networks, Protocols, & Wireless //

  • The 3GPP has completed its first 5G New Radio (NR) spec as part of its Release 15 specification. This should mean developers can begin radio designs.
  • Kerlink has sold Proximus an additional 800 LoRa base stations, as the Belgian MNO expands its LoRa network from an initial deployment of 130 Wirnet units.

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

  • Rigetti Computing has shown off a new quantum computing chip that can perform clustering algorithms, part of the machine-learning process for data organization.

// Smart Homes and Buildings //

  • Qorvo and Humax have unveiled the new Humax Chorus Voice Assistant, a turn-key Zigbee-powered smart home assistant for use in set top boxes – using the GP712 SoC.
  • Xiaomi has unveiled a new smart home speaker, under its Yeelight subsidiary, which uses Microsoft’s Cortana digital assistant to provide Amazon Echo Dot-like capabilities.

// Retail, Marketing, & Supply Chain //

  • Here has launched Here Tracking, a new asset tracking PaaS offering for indoor and outdoor location tracking, built on Here’s Open Location Platform, with Airoha (MediaTek’s IoT unit) and Concox (a designer of telematics and wireless systems) as first partners.
  • Thinfilm has published a case study with Oskar Blues, a US craft beer brewer, covering the release of 200,000 smart coaster that used Thinfilm’s NFC tags – for brand interaction.

// Automotive //

  • Honeywell and Karamba have partnered to showcase a new end-to-end automotive cybersecurity system at CES, to protect data and monitor ECU intrusion attempts.
  • Here and LG have partnered to combine LG’s telematics tech with Here’s Open Location Platform, aiming to provide automakers with a secure data communications hub.

// Smart Grid & Utility //

  • EDMI has picked SingTel to provide LTE-M (LTE Cat-M1) connectivity for its smart meters in Singapore’s nationwide smart metering deployment.
  • Fathom has published a preliminary assessment of its smart grid deployment with Phoenix Water, where it says it has reduced water loss by 5% annually after a 19km retrofit.
  • mPrest has been picked by NYPA to deploy mPrest’s monitoring and control software for the New York power provider’s critical assets infrastructure – to boost uptime and health.
  • The Wi-SUN Alliance and the DLMS User Association have announced a collaboration to carry DLMS/COSEM (a metering protocol) applications over Wi-SUN networks.