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IoT news of the week for Oct. 23, 2020

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Cognizant to acquire Bright Wolf for IIoT consulting: Professional services giant Cognizant has acquired Bright Wolf LLC for an undisclosed amount, its eighth acquisition this year. Bright Wolf has helped customers including Caterpillar and ITW Hartness connect their manufacturing equipment, pull data in for analysis, and figure out how to map insights derived from connected machines to workflow. With most digital transformations ending up as a highly customized job, even after years of efforts to standardize aspects of it, an acquisition like this makes sense. The need for customized consulting in the industrial IoT isn’t going away anytime soon. (Bright Wolf)

The Green Bay Packers are interested in synthetic data? Synthetaic, one of a few startups trying to use synthetic data to help train machine learning algorithms, has raised $ 4.5 million. The announced amount includes $ 1 million in pre-seed funding and a $ 3.5 million seed round led by Lupa Systems, with participation from Betaworks Ventures and TitletownTech, a Wisconsin-based fund formed out of a partnership between Microsoft and the Green Bay Packers. Synthetic data is poised to become a big deal when it comes to training machines because it’s much faster and can offer more varied examples than real data. Microsoft has trained drones to spot leaks on oil pipelines using simulations, and I wrote about another startup doing something similar. My real question is why the Packers are interested. I’m trying to imagine using “Madden NFL 2020” data to spot trends ahead of actual games. (Synthetaic)

Renesas and Sequans are teaming up for cellular IoT modules: Renesas, which makes chips used to power sensors and other connected devices, has worked with Sequans to integrate Sequans’ NB-IoT and LTE-M radios onto complete modules for use in IoT applications. Much like Qualcomm made it easier to develop cellphones in the early aughts with an integrated modem and applications process, Renesas and Sequans are trying to do the same thing for companies that want to build connected devices. (Renesas)

Amazon will pay you for your data: Earlier in the newsletter, we talked about closing the loop between sensor-based insights and a worker taking action so companies can optimize their operations. Amazon plans to close a different loop by asking consumers to participate in its online Shopper Panel and send 10 receipts from non-Amazon-owned stores. In exchange, consumers get a $ 10 Amazon credit. One reason Amazon wants this data is to find out what people are buying so it can beef up its own selection, but a bigger reason is that Amazon wants to close the loop between online advertising and the purchases that people actually make. (TechCrunch)

Tuya is now an Alexa Voice Services systems integrator: Tuya Smart, the Chinese company that’s building a connectivity and cloud platform to help manufacturers build connected devices, can now help its customers add Alexa capabilities to their devices. It offers a pre-certified module that manufacturers can include with their products to quickly add Alexa. (Tuya Smart)

The Konnected security alarm retrofit now works with SmartThings: Konnected, which makes a device that attaches to an existing “dumb” alarm system security panel, has finished its integration with SmartThings. That means users can link their Konnected panels and older alarm sensors back into the SmartThings apps and services. It’s a nice integration, tying your old security gear into your smart home. You have to be a wee bit handy to install the Konnected alarm (you will swap out your old security system’s motherboard and replace it with the Konnected board), but it’s a project that a lot of y’all would find worth doing. (Konnected)

Wemo has a new outdoor plug: If you plan on solving your pandemic stress by going all-in on your holiday lighting, grab a few of these new Wemo Wi-Fi outlets. The new outdoor-capable outlets are IP44-compliant; support HomeKit, Alexa, and Google’s Assistant; and cost $ 39.99. Smart outdoor outlets are great because they let you plug in your lights and control your display without ever having to leave your cozy spot on the couch. (HomeKit News)

June’s evolving its oven and its business model: June has launched pre-orders for its third-generation smart oven. It’s worth noting that there are three buying options, which range in price from $ 599 to $ 999. The priciest oven comes with a longer warranty, a year’s subscription to the recipe app, and more accessories. Customers who pay more will also get their oven in early December, while those paying the least will get theirs in early January. The second item of note is that the latest oven can control each of the six heating elements individually, which lets the oven cook meat in a rotisserie style. Fun. My four-and-a-half-year-old June is slowly dying, so I think it might be time to upgrade. My only question is, how do I recycle the old oven? (The Spoon)

Augury raised $ 55 million: One of my favorite companies in the industrial IoT, Augury has raised $ 55 million in a Series D round of financing led by Qumra Capital. Augury makes software and devices that use sound, temperature, and vibration to analyze the health of machines. It has been expanding in part because its customers are scaling up their orders and because COVID-19 has increased the demand for remote monitoring of factory conditions. Augury has a bright future based on the conversation I had with CEO Saar Yoskovitz last July. He told me about how predictive maintenance can help change the role of insurance, and also how manufacturing firms are using Augury’s software as a sort of Slack for manufacturing workers during the pandemic. (CTech)

The post IoT news of the week for Oct. 23, 2020 appeared first on Stacey on IoT | Internet of Things news and analysis.

Stacey on IoT | Internet of Things news and analysis


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