Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing

Ericsson bows out of IoT Accelerator; Ansys to acquire automotive simulation company; botnet attacks.


Pervasive computing

Swedish-based Ericsson is selling its IoT business platform to Aeris for an undisclosed amount. Ericsson will transfer its IoT Accelerator and Connected Vehicle Cloud businesses and assets to Aeris, a company that focuses on industrial, automotive, and medical IoT networks. The complexity and fragmentation of the IoT space requires more custom and hands on maintenance. According to Ericsson’s press announcement, Ericsson lost money on its IoT business, which consists of 9,000 enterprises using its IoT asset management software to manage more than 95 million connected devices with 22 million eSIM connections. Ericsson expects the deal to close in Q1 of 2023.  Founded in 1996, Aeris’ headquarters are in San Jose, Calif.

Fraunhofer IIS’ MPEG-H audio was used in World Cup broadcasts in South Korea and Brazil to give users immersive sound and personalization options. At a venue in the venue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, media group Grupo Globo enhanced the live immersive 5.1+4H feed received from Qatar with advanced audio interactivity and personalization options using Linear Acoustic’s Authoring and Monitoring System (AMS). By adding metadata, the media group gave its viewers the option to select different commentators or enhance the sound. The upcoming TV 3.0 standards were also showcased. South Korea has had MPEG-H on live broadcasts since 2017 under the ATSC 3.0 standard. MPEG-H Audio is an advanced audio system for UHD-TV and streaming that supports immersive sound and the ability for users to adjust audio elements to their preferences.

Dyson plans to launch noise canceling headphones that also purify the air you breath (and make you look like a futuristic helicopter pilot if you wear the detachable air purifier that goes over your mouth and nose). The headphones, called the Dyson Zone, have 11 microphones for noise cancelling and high-efficiency filtration via electrostatic filters that catch particle pollution as small as 0.1 microns and K-Carbon, potassium-enriched carbon filters that cut acidic gases of city pollution. The air is sucked in the earcups through compressors that push the air through the dual-layer filters and send two streams of purified air to the wearer’s nose and mouth using visor. The device has lithium-ion batteries and USB-C charging and will last 50 hours on audio only and 4 hours with the filter attached. The headphones will go on sale in January for $949.


Software quality issues may have held the U.S. economy back to the tune of $2.41 trillion in 2022, according to a Synopsys-sponsored CISQ report. The report also exposes existing vulnerabilities, software supply chain complexities and growing impact of technical debt as key drivers of increased cyberattacks. The findings reflect that as of 2022, the cost of poor software quality in the U.S. — which includes cyber-attacks due to existing vulnerabilities, complex issues involving the software supply chain, and the growing impact of rapidly accumulating technical debt — have led to a build-up of historic software deficiencies. “Cybercrime is predicted to cost the world $7 trillion in 2022,” said report author, Herb Krasner, retired professor of software engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. “Now is the time to turn our attention to recent developments and emerging solutions to help improve the poor software quality situation as it now exists and stabilize and reduce the growth rate of CPSQ in the near future.” Anita D’Amico, Synopsys Software Integrity Group vice president, noted that “just because a newly-added open-source component is secure today, does not mean that it will be secure tomorrow. Creating a software Bill of Materials (SBOM) allows organizations to proactively gather a comprehensive inventory of the components used to make up a piece of software. That means when a new vulnerability is identified in an existing component, organizations can quickly identify where it is in their software and take action to remedy it.”

A botnet called Zerobot has been taking advantage of multiple IoT vulnerabilities on multiple architectures to gain access and upload modules, one of which re-distribute itself. Zerobot uses the Go language to access i386, amd64, arm, arm64, mips, mips64, mips64le, mipsle, ppc64, ppc64le, riscv64, and s390x. FortiGuard Labs noticed the botnet in mid November.

A threat actor named Mustang Panda backed by China has accidently divulged its geopolitical attack playbook, showing how uses open conflicts, such as Russia’s war against Ukraine, as camouflage for its own attacks, according to BlackBerry Research and Intelligence Team. An .rar file was where the Blackberry team found the evidence.  “This file captured our interest due to the ongoing geopolitical situation in Eastern Europe,” wrote the BlackBerry Research and Intelligence Team in a blog post. “An examination of its contents revealed a decoy document matching the naming convention of the RAR, along with additional components that are often seen as part of a typical PlugX infection chain. By delving into the associated network infrastructure and pivoting off related network artifacts, additional files and infrastructure were uncovered.”

Automotive, mobility

Ansys will acquire automotive simulation company DYNAmore. “By joining with Ansys, we will provide complete software solutions for crash simulation, occupant safety, and production processes — including metal forming,” said Uli Goehner, co-founder of DYNAmore. “This acquisition will enable DYNAmore to provide our software solutions, code development, and simulation expertise to a wider customer base. As part of Ansys, we will expand our go-to-market strategy beyond the automotive industry in Europe — seeking broader market opportunities in the global biomedical, production process, and packaging industries.”

Lumissil Microsystems used Mixel’s 28nm ASIL-B compliant MIPI D-PHYSM CSI-2 RX+ IP in an automotive microcontroller that will go to production next year. “With the stringent safety requirements that come with designing automotive MCUs, we placed highest priority on the reliability and testability of the IP,” said Lumissil general manager Nadav Katsir.

Telechips integrated Arteris IP’s FlexNoC interconnect IP into several SoC products for automotive. “Arteris’ proven interconnect IP technology ensures that we meet our design requirements to facilitate safety and scalable future products, helping us to drive global innovation trends. And, it will help our new business areas, especially ADAS and MCUs, meet the highest level of OEM and Tier 1 requirements,” said Moon Soo Kim, SoC group leader and VP of Telechips.

Nio, the Chinese EV maker, is installing 20 battery-swapping stations in stations owned by utility EnBW in Germany, for Nio’s EVs. Nio installed its first battery swamping station in October in Germany and plans 120 swapping stations in Europe by the end of 2023, according to an article in Reuters.

Lexus plans to put a manual transmission in its electric supercar, according to Motor Authority.

Mercedes-Benz and Bosch now have regulatory approval to use their fully automated parking valet in a public parking lot.

U.S. EV pickup truck and SUV maker Rivian will purchase 50 MW of electricity from windpower created at Apex Clean Energy’s proposed Goose Creek Wind farm, which is due to go up in Piatt County, Illinois. The energy will power 75% of what Rivian needs to run its Normal, Illinois, plant but will also be part of its charging network.

Boeing rolled out its final 747 wide body plane off its production line in Everett, Washington.

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—Ann Steffora Mutschler contributed to this report.

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