// M&A, Strategies, Alliances //
- Lantronix has acquired Maestro & Falcom Holdings, paying $4.9mn to buy the respectively named subsidiaries. The deal sees Lantronix, an IIoT data access and management specialist, snap up an industrial-focused cellular IoT provider.
- Orange has acquired SecureLink, a cybersecurity services provider in Europe that will be incorporated into Orange’s business portfolio. The price agreed is €515mn ($579mn), for a firm with revenues of €248mn and 660 staff.
- Emerson has acquired Zedi’s software and automation business, including its cloud-based SCADA platform that Emerson wants to push to oil and gas majors on digital transformation initiatives. There are 155 Zedi employees joining.
// Networks, Protocols, & Wireless //
- The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) is planning to launch 72 IoT-focused satellites, in a LEO orbit. Commsat will be launching the constellation, funded by the Xi’an Institute of Optics and Precision Mechanics, which will be finished by 2022.
- Amazon is officially filing to launch 3,236 satellites, as part of its Project Kuiper. The FCC request will put the constellation into a low-earth orbit, initially targeting ‘tens of millions of consumers.’ Again, this has strong IoT potential.
- Puloli has deployed what it says is the world’s first standalone private LTE Cat-NB network, in the upper 700MHz band in Florida. The startup is looking to entice utilities and infrastructure providers with the network-as-a-service approach.
// Big Data, Cloud, AI, and Machine-Learning //
- The Metropolitan Police are being harangued, after the Human Rights, Big Data & Technology Project published what it said were significant flaws in the Met’s live facial recognition systems. The Met has claimed an error rate of 1 in 1000, but these new claims show just 8 of 42 matches were correct ~ 19% success rate.
- Siemens Healthcare and the Cleveland Clinic have published a paper on how they are using AI-based tools to personalize radiotherapy dosages, based on patient scans and their electronic medical records (EMR). It is claimed that this approach can reduce treatment failures to less than 5%.
- Deutsche Telekom and Software AG have announced a global partnership to build an IoT platform. Called Cloud of Things, it is being led by DT’s T-Systems division, using Software AG’s Cumulocity PaaS.
// Smart Homes and Buildings //
- Wyze has integrated Xnor.ai’s Edge AI stack into its smart home cameras, via a free firmware update for the Wyze Cam v2 and Wyze Cam Pan. It enables Wyze to offer person detection capabilities in its very affordable range of cameras.
- Google has launched an SDK for its Home platform that will support Local Home features, for running some smart home functions on the Nest Home devices themselves, rather than needing the cloud at every step.
// Wearables //
- Qualcomm is reportedly testing new smaller Snapdragon CPUs that support Android’s WearOS, according to German outlet WinFuture. The codes used for the SoCs are WTP2700 and WTP429W. A ‘Snapdragon 2700’ would fall nicely between the current 2100 and 3100 variants, while Qualcomm has a smartphone SoC called the Snapdragon 429 already, and so W might denote for wearables.
// Retail, Marketing, & Supply Chain //
- CalAmp has been picked by CTTMX, to provide a telematics migration service that will update the fleet tracking and logistics capabilities of one of the largest such providers in Central America and Mexico – currently using 2G.
- Sigfox and DHL are deploying 250,000 trackers in Germany, to track parcels using devices made by ALPS Electric Europe, over the coming six months. There’s no mention of revenue or price, however.
// Automotive //
- The European Commission has reversed its V2X decision, scrapping its recently mandated ITS-G5 (802.11p) rules after a review. This opens the door to the C-V2X approach favored by the GSMA community, but with how many times this has been through the works, who knows if this is the end of it.
- Bosch has announced Battery in the Cloud, a new service that claims to reduce EV battery cell degradation by up to 20%, by analyzing charging and discharging and then optimizing the recharging of the battery on a per-vehicle basis. Bosch’s expansion will first be used by DiDi Chuxing, in China.
- Toyota and Denso have formed a joint venture to develop autonomous vehicle components, with a focus on semiconductors. Denso would hold a small majority share of the firm, which is planned to launch in April 2020 with 500 staff. Toyota holds around a 30% stake in Denso.
// Security //
- Tenable has published a report on 14 critical security errors in Industrial Control Systems (ICS), which it has found in the past two years, from Siemens, Fuji Electric, Schneider Electric, and Rockwell Automation.
// Smart Grid & Utility //
- The US Senate has passed the Securing Energy Infrastructure Act (SEIA), a bipartisan bill that wants to replace automated controls with manual redundancies, in case of malicious cyberattack.
- Siemens says that Pittsburgh could reduce its carbon emissions by 75% by 2030, using its City Performance Toll (CyPT), via solar, expanded district heating, electric buses, ridesharing, and non-residential building automation systems.
// Health //
- University of Washington researchers have demonstrated a software tool that uses Google Home and Amazon Echo speakers to monitor sleepers for signs of cardiac arrest, looking for breathing difficulties and calls for help. Amazon struck an integration deal with the UK’s Department of Health, to provide NHS advice to Alexa users.
- Omron Healthcare has also announced an Alexa-enabled tool, with a new line of blood pressure monitors that will let the user use Alexa to query their personalized blood pressure reports. They could just look at the smartphone app, but these sorts of integrations are the first step towards much more enmeshed services.
- Fitbit and Cardiogram have partnered, to combine Fitbit devices with Cardiogram’s heart-focused tracking application and backend platform, which is currently used by around a million people, to monitor their heart health. This is the latest integration from Fitbit, which seems very much focused on its healthcare portfolio expansion.