Week in Review: IoT, Security, Autos

Arm SIM survey; Intel chip flaw; Q2 results.


Arm released a survey of 650 industry representatives about eSIM and iSIM technology. Ninety percent of the respondents were aware of eSIM, while 43% were unaware of iSIM. Vincent Korstanje, vice president and general manager, Emerging Businesses at Arm, cites the leading three obstacles to large commercial deployments: Resistance from traditional stakeholders (69% of respondents), complexity to deliver (40%), and lock-in concerns (40%). “As we drive towards our vision of a trillion connected devices by 2035, one of the most critical steps towards enabling IoT connectivity is the evolution of the underlying SIM technology, primarily embedded SIM (eSIM) and integrated SIM (iSIM), for authenticating users on mobile networks, both existing and future 5G networks,” he writes in this blog post.

Students from Columbia University, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, and the University of Rochester received awards for their entries in the 2019 Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition, according to Synopsys.

Palo Alto, Calif.-based One Concern uses artificial intelligence, machine learning, catastrophe modeling, and seismology to provide insights in advance on disasters, such as earthquakes, hurricanes, and wildfires. The startup has $22.6 million in private funding from New Enterprise Associates and other investors. This analysis raises concerns about the company’s technology, especially how it claims to calculate financial damages arising from a disaster.

Semtech’s Smart Buildings Reference Kit is a collection of tools meant to accelerate the development of smart buildings using LoRa devices and the LoRaWAN protocol. The kit includes more than 20 sensors, two gateways, and a global 4G hotspot.

Internet of Things
Business Insider forecasts there will be more than 64 billion Internet of Things devices by 2025, compared with about 10 billion last year. Rohit Goyal of Nutanix offers advice on implementing IoT projects. The three top considerations: Begin with design thinking; prioritize the pilot; and prepare for scale.

Researchers at BitDefender report discovering a flaw in modern Intel processors that leaves the chips open to exploitation through the speculative execution features that are part of the chip. These Intel processors support the SWAPGS system call, which enables the processor to swap between the kernel mode and user mode memory rings. During the past year, BitDefender worked with Intel, Microsoft, the Linux Foundation, and other stakeholders to develop a fix for this vulnerability.

CipherTrace, a cryptocurrency intelligence firm, estimates cryptocurrency fraud, scams, and theft will cause $4.3 billion in losses this year, after ringing up a total of $1.2 billion during the first quarter. The company estimates $125 million in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other digital assets were stolen from exchanges during the second quarter of 2019.

This week in Huawei – senior management of Huawei Technologies sees a significant overhaul of the company that will be necessary to guide Huawei through its problems created by the Trump administration. This process will take three to five years to complete, resulting in an “invincible iron army,” according to a recent letter by Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei, an engineer who once served as a researcher in the People’s Liberation Army. Meanwhile, Huawei is reportedly refreshing its MateBook line of notebook computers, specifically with a 5G-connected notebook, according to Huawei component suppliers in Taiwan. With the possible use of Advanced Micro Devices or Intel processors, the 5G MateBook would be based upon an x86-64 chip. Finally, The Wall Street Journal reports that Huawei helped two African governments spy on dissidents. The Chinese firm also reportedly helped shut down opposition news websites in Zambia.

Paige Thompson, the software engineer and former Amazon Web Services employee accused of hacking into AWS-hosted Capital One accounts, reportedly acquired data from more than 30 companies, educational institutions, and other organizations, federal prosecutors alleged in a filing with the U.S. District Court in Western Washington, seeking to deny bail being granted for the suspect.

ForeScout Technologies and Duo Security report that health care suffers from several cybersecurity issues, principally the use of outdated Windows platforms and medical devices that operate on legacy systems. Leon Lerman, founder and CEO of Cynerio, and Jonathan Tanner, senior security researcher for Barracuda Networks, provide their perspectives on the situation in this analysis.

Government agencies and the military were the victims of 99 data breaches last year, and those breaches continue into 2019. When it comes to ransomware, law enforcement advises government entities to not pay the ransoms, while security consultants advocate for paying ransom for the quick return of critical systems.

Cyberattacks continue to beleaguer American school districts. Earlier this month, the Broken Arrow Public Schools in Oklahoma were hit with ransomware, while the school district in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, was besieged with email scams, which also targeted the county government.

Glasswall Solutions, a cybersecurity firm in the U.K., issued the August 2019 Threat Intelligence Bulletin, saying cyberattackers and hackers targeting the technology industry are going after software developers. The technology sector accounts for nearly half of malicious phishing campaigns, the firm notes.

Chief financial officers at large enterprises often fail to realize that their cyber insurance policies may not cover all the losses involved in a data breach or other cyberattacks, reports FM Global, a commercial property insurer. In a survey of 105 CFOs and other senior financial executives, 45% said they expected their insurer will cover “most” related losses from a cybersecurity event, and 26% said they expected the carrier to cover “all” related losses.

Here we go again – enterprise printers are proving vulnerable to cyberattacks, according to the NCC Group. Researchers at the cybersecurity and risk remediation firm identified six mid-range office printers that are particularly vulnerable. The manufacturers are Brother, HP, Kyocera, Lexmark International, Ricoh, and Xerox.

The Brennan Center for Justice at the NYU Law School released a study revealing that 12% of American voters will be using paperless voting systems in the 2020 elections. About one-third of local voting jurisdictions are using voting machines that are at least a decade old, despite recommendations that such machines should be replaced after 10 years of use.

SYNNEX of Greenville, S.C., teamed with Sophos Group, a specialist in network and endpoint security, to bolster its cybersecurity portfolio. SYNNEX provides business process services.

Uber Technologies reported a net loss of $5.2 billion during the second quarter, three-quarters of which was from stock-based compensation paid to employees after the company’s initial public offering in May. An operating loss of $1.3 billion compared with a loss of $878 million in the same period of 2018. Uber said it expected to lose $3 billion to $3.2 billion in 2019. Q2 revenue was $3.1 billion, a 14% gain from a year earlier, and the slowest quarterly growth rate the company has ever reported. Lyft, the ride-hailing rival, reported a net loss of $644.2 million for Q2, up from $178.9 million a year ago. Almost half of that loss stemmed from stock compensation paid to employees following the company’s IPO in March. Q2 revenue increased 72% to $867.3 million. Lyft now expects its 2019 revenue will come in at $3.47 billion to $3.5 billion, lowering its expected adjusted losses for the year to about $875 million, down from an earlier projection of $1.17 billion. “We anticipate 2019 losses to be better than previously expected, and we are pleased to have updated our outlook,” Logan Green, a co-founder and the CEO of Lyft, said in a statement. Following Uber’s financial results, the company imposed a freeze on hiring engineers in Canada and the U.S., Yahoo Finance reports, while also laying off 400 employees in its corporate marketing team. “Both companies held eye-catching initial public offerings this year and have invested billions to expand markets. The question investors have asked from the beginning is: When will they turn a profit? Analysts wrestle with the business models, but see a big opportunity long term,” Brian Deagon writes in this analysis. “With Uber and Lyft both announcing large quarterly losses last week, it’s clear they have a long way to go to reach profitability, and analysts are increasingly focused on the long-term viability of the industry,” this analysis notes. “One potential pathway is the advent and utilization of autonomous vehicles (AVs), which could reduce the single largest expense incurred by the ride-hailing networks: compensation to human drivers. However, just adding AVs to lower costs won’t be a silver bullet.”

Autonomy technology in vehicles dates to the introduction of cruise control in the 1958 Chrysler Imperial, this analysis notes. It was almost four decades before basic Level One autonomy was ushered in with the debut of Distronic adaptive cruise control in the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Progress has since been made on several fronts, from Honda Motor, Subaru, Ford Motor, Nissan Motor, Kia Motors, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, and Volvo Cars.

General Motors and Volkswagen Group are cutting their investments in hybrid electric vehicles in favor of all-electric vehicles, this analysis notes.

Revel deployed a fleet of 1,000 Vespa-style mopeds in the outer boroughs of New York City, where there are often long distances between subway stops, especially compared with subway routes in Manhattan. The company makes its headquarters in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn, which has seen significant gentrification in recent years, despite the presence of the heavily polluted Gowanus Canal. Revel provides a pair of helmets with each scooter rental. The company is offering an attractive alternative to the CitiBike bicycle-sharing service.

Velodyne Lidar brought out the Puck 32MR sensor, meant for low-speed autonomous products, such as robotics, and for unmanned aerial vehicles, also known as drones. The sensor can detect bicycles, crosswalks, curbs, pedestrians, obstacles, and vehicles, the manufacturer says.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Advisory Committee on Automation in Transportation was formed in early 2017, in the final days of the Obama administration. The White House apparently has no use for the committee, which has been quietly terminated, The Verge reports.

Deliveroo, the British food delivery service, is backing out of the German market. The move reduces competition in that market for Takeaway.com, which recently agreed to merge with Just Eat. Deliveroo is focusing on growth in France and the U.K., said a company spokesman. In May, Amazon led Series G funding of $575 million for Deliveroo.

San Francisco-based Skip introduced its S3 electric scooter, a new model with larger wheels, a longer and wider riding deck, brighter lighting, and a swappable battery. The new e-scooter boasts a 60% improvement in range, it was said.

AMS is bidding to acquire Osram for €4.3 billion (nearly $4.8 billion), topping a €4 billion takeover offer by Bain Capital and The Carlyle Group. This backgrounder looks at the Austrian sensor supplier and the German lighting company which has diversified into photonics technology.

VMware is negotiating to acquire Pivotal Software for about $4 billion, according to a regulatory filing by Dell Technologies, which controls both companies.

BC Partners, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire New York-based Presidio for $2 billion in cash. Publicly-traded Presidio, a provider of IT services, has a 40-day “go-shop” period to seek other offers. BC plans to complete the transaction during the fourth quarter.

Thoma Bravo agreed to sell iPipeline to Roper Technologies for $1.625 billion in cash. Exton, Pa.-based iPipeline provides cloud-based software for financial services companies and insurance firms. Roper expects to close the transaction during the third quarter.

Barracuda Networks of Campbell, Calif., acquired InfiSecure Technologies of Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. Financial terms were not disclosed. InfiSecure offers a bot mitigation technology platform, which will be integrated into Barracuda’s cloud-based cybersecurity offerings.

Extreme Networks completed its $272 million cash acquisition of Aerohive, which provides cloud management and edge networking technology. The transaction has an enterprise value of $210 million, considering Aerohive’s $62 million in net cash.

Amdocs purchased TTS Wireless of Pleasanton, Calif., for about $50 million in cash. TTS provides mobile network engineering services.

Accenture acquisitions of the week: The Dublin-based professional services company agreed to acquire Insitum, a service design and strategic research firm in Mexico. It also plans to purchase Australia’s Analytics8, a big data analytics consultancy.

Converged Security Solutions of Reston, Va., is buying Maverick Cyber-Defense, a cybersecurity specialist, also located in Virginia.

Cloudflare released its S-1 filing on Thursday. The Internet security and content delivery firm posted a net loss of $36.8 million on revenue of $129.2 million for the first half of 2019. Revenue was up 48% from a year earlier, while the net loss increased by 13%. Customers include Baidu Group, DigitalOcean, Discord, IBM, Marketo, and Zendesk. Among its competitors are Akamai Technologies, Amazon, Cisco Systems, Fastly, Microsoft, and Zscaler. Fidelity Management & Research, NEA, Pelion Ventures, and Venrock are investors in the company. Cloudflare co-founder and CEO Matthew Prince owns 20.2% of the Class B shares, while co-founder and chief operating officer Michelle Zatlyn holds 6.8%.

Cloudera reached an agreement with activist investor Carl Icahn, giving him the power to designate two directors for the Cloudera board. Icahn has an equity stake of 12.6% in Cloudera and has agreed to limit his stake-holding to 20%.

TechCrunch reports that Postmates, the San Francisco-based delivery platform, plans to publicly file an IPO prospectus next month. The startup has raised $681.5 million in private funding, according to Crunchbase.

LitePoint, a Teradyne subsidiary, joined the FiRa Consortium, which fosters the development of an Ultra-Wideband ecosystem for fine-ranging capabilities. Other consortium members include The ASSA ABLOY Group, Bosch, NXP Semiconductors, Samsung Electronics, Sony Imaging Products & Solutions, and the Telecommunications Technology Association.

Market Research
Juniper Research forecasts mobile operators will see more than $7 billion in revenue in 2024 for the use of unique mobile identifier services, providing identity verification through SIMs. That market will be worth $859 million this year, Juniper estimates. The firm’s new research, Digital Identity: Technology Evolution, Regulatory Analysis & Forecasts 2019-2024, is available here. You may also obtain a free whitepaper, Three Trends Accelerating the Growth of Digital Identity.

The Forrester Wave: Strategic iPaaS and Hybrid Integration Platforms, 2019, is available for download here.

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