See what IoT movers and shakers are looking at this week
The Internet of Things World show in Silicon Valley this week is a showcase for a lot of hard-core enterprise technologies, plus some connected objects for consumers. A lot of what’s on show took two or more companies to put together, highlighting the importance of partnerships and ecosystems in IoT.
IoT takes teamwork
A lot of IoT involves one company adding features to another company’s product. Electric Imp builds chip modules with its own OS that can do things like sending out data from devices in the field and giving commands back to that equipment. Pitney Bowes offers an Electric Imp add-on for its postage meters.
Even postage meters are getting smart
Pitney Bowes fellow Rick Ryan said postage meters with a dongle made by Electric Imp can alert the manufacturer if a meter is broken, allow it to update the firmware, and notify the user – or Pitney Bowes – if the toner’s run out. Meanwhile, Pitney Bowes learns more about how the meters get used so it can make the next one better.
Data is the new black
Sometimes the “things” in IoT are really people. In a project by Analog Devices and Microsoft, they’re hurlers. Athletic shirts made by Hexoskin, which Microsoft Azure IoT marketing director Jerry Lee showed in a keynote, have sensors to measure things like heart rate, breathing volume and location. The companies plan to send this data to Microsoft’s Azure cloud for analysis.
Microsoft wants to score in ... hurling?
In a pilot, the companies collect data from players on the Irish hurling team Clare and process it using Azure IoT Suite. A dashboard for team staff shows each player’s current condition. The plan is to add gyroscopes and accelerometers for player performance and send all the data over a cell network.
The race to the cloud is heating up
Yet another joint display brought together developer Software Productivity Strategists (SPS), distributor/integrator Avnet, and general tech goliath IBM. The toy cars had telematics modules that sent real-time performance data to IBM’s BlueMix platform and Watson IoT analytics service.
Data handling is key
This miniature smart city drew crowds to Buddy Platform’s booth. The IoT data management company can take in many types of data, store it, then analyze it to provide measurements on a dashboard. It can also send the data out to public clouds or customers’ data centers, plus make it available to systems like Tableau.
How to tell if schools are making the energy grade
Companies such as Noveda Technologies use Buddy’s platform to handle the data that comes out of the devices they make. Noveda sets up power and water meters in enterprise facilities like the New York City schools to give the owners more knowledge and control of their consumption. They chose Buddy because it can handle big volumes of incoming data.
IoT means new ways to network
LinkLabs helps things like locks and water meters send data into the cloud, where it can be analyzed and used to control the devices. The data travels over an LPWAN (low-power wide area network) that’s based on the LoRA standard, but it’s strictly for private networks. It’s designed to go farther and use less power than Wi-Fi.
These modules can help track just about anything
Manufacturers of connected devices put LinkLabs wireless modules in their products and can build services that tap into the LinkLabs cloud, which stores and delivers data collected from the devices. Those services can help customers with jobs like tracking forklifts or farm animals.
A high-tech connected lock with an old-fashioned touch
An Italian IoT startup called MyClose showed off connected locks that can detect when someone’s touched them and report that to the owner. It’s looking to expand to the U.S. The locks talk a proprietary wireless protocol to a gateway that’s linked to cell networks. But to open the locks, you need an old-fashioned key.