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IoT news of the week for April 2, 2021

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ProGlove’s insight software is a good next step: ProGlove is one of my favorite IoT startups. I first met up with the company at an event in 2017, where it was showing off its wearable scanner. The scanner was incredibly small, fit on the backside of a glove, and was designed for use in manufacturing and industrial settings. The idea was that the device would replace handheld scanners with the wearable alternative. The company has raised more than $ 60 million and has customers that include DHL and Kuka. Now it’s introducing software called ProGlove Insight that monitors employees’ motions to help companies improve their processes. A. Ilhan Kolko, VP of product at ProGlove, calls this a human digital twin, although that feels like a bit of a stretch. I do think this data is an excellent add-on to the hardware and services ProGlove already offers. The time and motion data that goes into the Insight software can be used for understanding how people move throughout the manufacturing or fulfillment process and could be used to prevent injuries.  It’s also data that would be hard to come by without installing new sensors such as cameras. By adding the capability to their existing hardware, ProGlove is adding an additional revenue stream and capitalizing on unique data available to it. This is how IoT companies should be thinking. (ProGlove)

Digi International acquires LoRaWAN company: Digi International sells a wide variety of embedded boards and systems used in the internet of things. Its Digi XBee ecosystem and Digi ConnectCore system-on-modules make it pretty simple to build the computing, sensor, and radio elements needed for remote sensors or even a gateway. It has purchased Dallas-based startup Haxiot for an undisclosed sum to broaden its portfolio of LoRaWAN devices in anticipation of LoRa networks going mainstream this year. Based on Amazon’s plans for its Sidewalk network (which uses a LoRa radio, but a proprietary protocol) and new economic models floated by Helium and Semtech, I tend to agree. (Digi International)

U-blox acquires Sapcorda for more accurate positioning: U-blox, a Swiss company that makes wireless location products, has acquired Sapcorda, a company whose service helps improve satellite location data. Sapcorda is a joint venture created by several companies including U-blox. The idea was to build a technology that could help deliver more precise satellite location information by taking into account the delays in sending the signal to earth. With this deal, U-blox takes over Sapcorda’s service and can now provide an additional line of business as well as layer the service on top of its own positioning hardware for more accurate results. The deal follows a trend for better positioning data that is accurate to within a few centimeters as opposed to a few meters. (Inside GNSS)

Check out this water monitoring project in India: Tata is working with Indian companies to monitor groundwater systems in six Indian villages. The press release goes into details on the parameters of the project, how the data from the sensors is provided to villagers and state water officials, as well as some of the results of the pilot projects. The deployment sounds challenging given that wired power and good cellular or Wi-Fi signals weren’t readily available in most of the areas where the sensors were installed. (Jal Jeevan Mission)

Alexa developers can now code for motion for the Echo Show 10: Amazon released a new version of its Alexa Presentation Language (APL) that lets developers take advantage of the Echo Show 10’s ability to move its screen to follow the user. This means developers can now have the screen move in a slow motion from left to right or from right to left. Developers can also make the screen move the screen back and forth more rapidly like the Echo is shaking its head. Yes, I’m anthropomorphizing a screen. If Amazon keeps this slow and steady pace of new robotics functionality and embeds them in APL it’s possible that it could end up building the OS for consumer robotics. I’m sure somewhere in Amazon HQ there’s a six-page memo describing that exact vision.  (Amazon)

Zededa gets $ 12.5 million: Industrial IoT startup Zededa has raised $ 12.5 million in funding to tack onto its $ 16 million Series A round from February 2019. To extend the terms of a series A round over such a long time frame is unusual, but these are unusual times. New investors Rockwell Automation, Juniper Networks, and EDF North American Ventures joined the round. Zededa is one of several startups making software that can containerize software to run on constrained edge devices. Others include Pixieomm (which was purchased by Siemens) and Nubix. (Zededa)

Apparently, it’s time to start thinking about IoT security in the Antarctic: I don’t usually see IoT stories on Lawfare, so this one about the need to think about the unique cybersecurity risks associated with sensor deployments and remote monitoring in the polar regions jumped out at me. It’s a coherent argument for using IoT in harsh environments, as well as a warning that the industry will have to think about the unique security risks associated with those environments. Much like an article a few weeks back focused on the unique security risks associated with smart agriculture, this one tackles the dangers of Arctic deployments and speculates that we’ll find similar issues in space. Sure. (Lawfare)

Using 5G signals to create an alternate power grid for IoT: Researchers at Georgia Tech have figured out how to build a flexible antenna array for 5G networks that can harvest the extra energy from the millimeter waves used in some 5G networks. The resulting device could be affixed to sensors as a way to provide continuous power without relying on batteries or wires. (Nature, h/t DesignBoom)

Ubiquiti has a vulnerability/credibility problem: This is a messy story involving hacked router credentials, a whistleblower, and a company whose response to a breach may have been less than open. Ubiquiti, which makes routers and other wireless gear (we recommend it often) disclosed a breach in January that led to some user credentials getting hacked. Now Brian Krebs is reporting that Ubiquiti underplayed the nature of the hack and may have falsely blamed a third-party cloud provider for its own errors. (Krebs on Security)

The post IoT news of the week for April 2, 2021 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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