The Week In Review: IoT

Distracted driving; T-Mobile’s NB-IoT network; intelligent transportation systems.

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Conferences
Artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and 5G wireless communications were the talk of this week’s Mobile World Congress Americas event at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Interesting topics, to be sure, yet they were eclipsed by a panel discussion on Wednesday afternoon about a matter of life or death. At a program put together by 151 Advisors, one of the panel sessions was titled, “Using IoT to Stop Distracted Driving.” Katasi CEO Scott Tibbits and Ready Mobile CEO Dennis Henderson discussed how they collaborated on using Katasi’s Groove application to keep drivers – especially young drivers – from texting and using mobile applications while they are behind the wheel. Rounding out the panel was Edward Catich, a deputy from the Kane County Sheriff’s Office in Illinois. He recounted how he frequently sees drivers texting while they’re on the road, and his presence on patrol doesn’t seem to deter them. He told the story of a young driver killed in a head-on collision at the top of a hill, while the driver and the passengers in the vehicle were using Snapchat. “It breaks my heart every time I go to an accident scene and see another fatality from distracted driving,” Catich said. “If we can get this into the hands to save just one family from the pain that I have seen through dozens of families in my career, then we need to do it. As a society, we need to do it, because it’s the right thing to do.”

Technology
Actility demonstrated an asset tracking offering at MWCA, using Comcast’s machineQ IoT network service and platform. The demo combined the Abeeway Master Tracker hardware with Actility’s ThingPark IoT software through the machineQ low-power wide-area network in San Francisco.

Mobike will use AT&T’s 4G LTE connectivity and Qualcomm’s LTE IoT modems to support its smart bicycle offering in the U.S. Mobike has a smartphone application for locating and renting its smart bikes. The company presently manages more than 7 million smart bikes in 160-plus cities around the world.

Products
Sierra Wireless introduced the AirLink MP70 LTE-Advanced router with AirLink Mobility Manager. The Canadian company is working with T-Mobile on a rollout of narrow-band IoT connectivity across the U.S.

Connectivity
T-Mobile US worked with Ericsson and Qualcomm on field tests of narrow-band IoT technology on its commercial LTE network in Las Vegas, Nevada. The carrier plans to deploy its NB-IoT network nationwide by mid-2018. T-Mobile also said it will deploy an LTE Cat-M network next year.

Inmarsat issued a report, The Future of IoT in Enterprise – 2017. A survey of 100 large energy companies found that more than half cited connectivity as a significant challenge, while nearly one-quarter of respondents said connectivity issues were threatening to derail their IoT projects. The report can be downloaded here.

Cybersecurity
F5 Labs has a report on cyberattack activity during 2017. One surprising fact – 83% of all attacks during the first six months of this year were launched from Spain, not China, which had previously led in such activity. An executive summary of the report can be found here, where you can download a PDF of the full report.

Deals
IoTium completed a distribution agreement with Yorkland Controls, which will offer the IoTium network-as-a-service for building automation systems in Canada. IDC estimates the Canadian IoT market will be valued at more than $4.9 billion next year.

Finance
Nikola Labs, a developer of wireless power components for the IoT, raised $2 million from European investors, bringing its total funding to $4 million. Ikove Capital Partners is the Ohio startup’s largest investor. Nikola plans to double its workforce, from 20 employees to 40 people, in the next 12 months, adding personnel in engineering and sales.

People
Drew Henry, formerly a senior executive at SanDisk and CEO of Acetti Software, has joined Arm as senior vice president and general manager for infrastructure.

Market Research
Transparency Market Research forecasts the worldwide market for intelligent transportation systems will be worth $249.84 billion by the end of 2025, compared with $41.57 billion in 2015, for a compound annual growth rate of 19.8% from 2017 to 2025. Among the companies involved in the market are Cisco Systems, Hitachi, Huawei Technologies, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, NEC, Siemens, and Verizon Communications. Find out more here.

The global IoT health-care market will have a 30% CAGR from 2016 to 2023, according to Occams Business Research & Consulting. The Asia Pacific region will be the fastest growing market during those years, the market research firm predicts. Details on the OBRC report are here.