Rethink IoT News ATW 197: 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 //

  • Breed Reply continues its hunt for IoT investment opportunities, launching the Best in Breed 7 program for European startups.

  • Xylem has acquired EmNet, a US provider of smart water systems that sold its wares to municipalities looking to manage urban and wastewater deployments.

  • ISSI is acquiring Sigma Design’s wired connectivity business, as Sigma shuts up shop. The Sigma Designs Israel SDI business focuses PLC, and lines up well with Smart Grid.

// Laws, Regulation, and Lawsuits //

  • The Uber-Waymo lawsuit has kicked off, with Judge Alsup saying that it was ‘unconscionable’ that there were 9 lawyers on each side – a record, and indicative of the potential scale of what is expected to be a 3-week trial. Update: it was settled for what seems like a bargain – $245m in Uber stock.

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

  • The number of connected IoT devices in the world in 2018 will hit 31bn, according to IHS Markit. Commercial and Industrial will account for half of new devices through 2030.

  • CIRP reports that the home automation device market has grown to 27m in the US, with Amazon’s Echo range holding 73% (20m) of the market.

  • Smarter homes for older people could save the UK’s NHS and social care systems around £2.5bn a year, according to a new report from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

// Hardware //

  • Tokyo Tech has announced a Bluetooth Low Energy transceiver with what they claim is the lowest ever power consumption, consuming 2.9mW when sending, and 2.3mW receiving.

// Networks, Protocols, & Wireless //

  • Verizon and Ericsson say they have completed their first successful NB-IoT Guard Band data session, in a trial in Texas – ahead of a promised national roll-out this year.

  • Actility’s CEO Mike Mulica has left the company, moving on to head Digital Services Exchange (DSX), an LPWAN-focused interoperability and monetization services exchange.

  • Mozilla has released its Project Things gateway code, its implementation of the W3C’s Web of Things standard that would give devices connected to the gateway an IoT URL.

  • Sigfox is now in 45 countries, saying it has added Malaysia (Xperanti), South Korea (Amotech), Switzerland (Heliot), Hungary (Omnicell IoTnet), and the UAE (iWire).

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

  • Super Micro is expanding its edge-compute options with a new set of server and embedded motherboards for the Intel Xeon D-2100 – aimed at providing powerful compute at the edge.

  • Doxel has unveiled a new AI-based visual inspection system for the construction industry, which aims to help builders spot errors in the construction process.

// Smart Homes and Buildings //

  • Control4 has released its new CA-1 Automation Controller, a $350 smart home hub and gateway that it hopes will enable new reseller and installer opportunities and offerings.

  • Google has confirmed it is bringing Nest back in-house, folding it back into the fold as it hopes to ramp up competition against Amazon and its Echo line – via the strong Nest brand.

  • Crestron and Google have partnered to integrate Google Assistant into Crestron’s professional smart home installations and devices.

  • Nest’s last remaining co-founder, Matt Rogers, is leaving Google following the in-housing, with former Nest CEO, Tony Fadell, commenting that spinning it our was a poor decision.

  • Netgear is apparently planning on spinning out its Arlo smart home platform into a separate company, which center around home security cameras.

// Wearables //

  • Amazfit’s Bip boasts around 6-weeks of battery life, to power its GPS-enabled Apple Watch clone. Costing just $99, it’s proof of just how quickly the wearables market has settled.

  • Intel has unveiled Vaunt, its new retinal-projection smart glasses, which look very much like conventional frames. They do not yet feature a speaker or microphone – key features.

  • Chinese rail police officers are using smart glasses with a connection to a facial recognition cloud system to screen passengers in Zhengzhou, Henan Province.

  • Zeiss and Deutsche Telekom have launched a joint-venture, called Tooz Technology, which will develop smart glasses tech, including optics and connectivity systems.

// Industrial & Manufacturing //

  • Odfjell Drilling has picked IFS’ IoT Business Connector software platform to help it digitize data collected from its North Sea oil business, and present it in IFS Applications.

  • Amalto and ConsenSys have formed a joint-venture called Ondiflo, to provide an Ethereum-based blockchain platform for IIoT and Oil & Gas customers.

// Retail, Marketing, & Supply Chain //

  • Ocado has posted a loss of £500k in 2017, down from profits of £12m in 2016, as it overhauls its warehousing systems with new robotics and automation technology.

  • Rotterdam has picked IBM to help supply it with a digital transformation platform to pave the way for autonomous ships, which the Port of Rotterdam hopes to support by 2025.

  • Sercom and 30MHz have announced a partnership to develop improved real-time remote monitoring systems for cold storage and greenhouses, using sensor hardware.

// Automotive //

  • Continental and Nvidia have announced that the Continental Autonomous Vehicle System will use Nvidia’s Drive platform, due for launch in 2021, with SAE Level 5 support.

  • The EU has funded the next stage of its EU Truck Platooning project, with the new Ensemble Consortium aiming to demo multi-brand platooning in the next 3-years.

  • Didi Chuxing has announced plans to launch an electric vehicle car sharing system, enabling users to rent EVs through a smartphone app.

  • Tesla has announced its largest ever quarterly loss, of $675.4m. Compared to 2016’s Q4 of $121m, the Model 3 production delays seem to have taken their toll.

  • Embark Trucks has completed a coast-to-coast test drive of its autonomous truck system, retrofitted to Peterbilt semis. It did not rely on a human driver on the freeways – impressive.

// Smart Cities //

  • Verizon and ShotSpotter have partnered to add gunshot detection features to Verizon’s Light Sensory Network streetlight offerings. The tech has had mixed reactions from adopters.

// Smart Grid & Utility //

  • Landis+Gyr’s intelliHUB subsidiary will deploy 500k smart meters in Australia for Simply Energy, partly in response to new pro-consumer legislation in the country.

  • Tesla will sell its Powerwall home battery systems in 800 Home Depots in the USA, as well as its Solar Roof PV system, in a very significant expansion of its smart grid strategy.

  • Tesla has secured another win in South Australia, with the state announcing a plan to create a 50k-unit virtual power plant (VPP) using Tesla Powerwall’s in consumer homes.

  • Nokia and EDF have announced a testbed to explore LPWAN technologies in utility applications, incorporating Nokia’s TestHub service, focused on LTE-M and NB-IoT.

  • Nordic Automation Systems has picked SenRa to help provide it with LoRa-based connectivity in India, where SenRa is building out a national network.