IoT trends for 2017

According to Intel IoT is expected to be a multi-trillion-dollar market, with 50 billion devices creating 44 zettabytes (or 44 trillion gigabytes) of data annually by 2020. But that widely cited 50 billion IoT devices in 2020 number is clearly not correct! Forecast of 50 Billion Devices by 2020 Is Outdated. In 2017 we should be talking about about some sensible numbers. The current count is somewhere between Gartner’s estimate of 6.4 billion (which doesn’t include smartphones, tablets, and computers), International Data Corporation’s estimate of 9 billion (which also excludes those devices), and IHS’s estimate of 17.6 billion (with all such devices included). Both Ericsson and Evans have lowered their expectations from 50 billion for 2020: Evans, who is now CTO of Stringify, says he expects to see 30 billion connected devices by then, while Ericsson figures on 28 billion by 2021.

Connectivity and security will be key features for Internet of Things processors  in 2017. Microcontroller (MCU) makers will continue to target their products at the Internet of Things (IoT) in 2017 by giving more focus on battery life, more connectivity of various types, and greater security. The new architectures are almost sure to spawn a multitude of IoT MCUs in 2017 from manufacturers who adopt ARM’s core designs.

ARM will be big. Last year, ARM’s partners shipped 15 billion chips based on its architectures. The trend toward IoT processors will go well beyond ARM licensees. Intel rolled out the Intel Atom E3900 Series  for IoT applications. And do not forget MIPS an RISC-V.

FPGA manufacturers are pushing their products to IoT market. They promise that FPGAs solve challenges at the core of IoT implementation: making IoT devices power efficient, handling incompatible interfaces, and providing a processing growth path to handle the inevitable increase in device performance requirement.

Energy harvesting field will become interesting in 2017 as it is more broadly adopted. Energy harvesting is becoming the way forward to help supplement battery power or lose the need for it altogether. Generally researchers are eyeing energy-harvesting to power ultra-low-power devices, wearable technology, and other things that don’t need a lot of power or don’t come in a battery-friendly form factor.


Low power wide area networks (LPWA) networks (also known as NarrowBand IoT) will be hot in 2017. There is hope that f LPWA nets will act as a catalyst, changing the nature of the embedded and machine-to-machine markets as NB-IoT focuses specifically on indoor coverage, low cost, long battery life, and enabling a large number of connected devices. The markets will become a kind of do-it-yourselfers paradise of modules and services, blurring the lines between vendors, users and partners.  At the same time for years to come, the market for low power wide area networks (LPWA) will be as fragmented and  is already in a race to the bottom (Sigfox, said to be promising costs approaching $1 per node per year). Competing technologies include Sigfox, LoRa Alliance, LTE Cat 1, LTE Cat M1 (eMTC), LTE Cat NB1 (NB-IoT) and other sub-gigahertz options almost too numerous to enumerate.

We are starting to see a battle between different IoT technologies, and in few years to come we will see which are winners and which technologies will be lost in the fight. Sigfox and Lora are currently starting well, but telecom operators with mobile networks NB-IoT will try hit the race heavily in 2017. Vendors prep Cat M1, NB1 for 2017: The Cat M1 standard delivers up to 380 Kbits/second over a 1.4 MHz channel. NB-1 handles up to 40 Kbits/s over 200 kHz channels.  Vendors hope the 7-billion-unit installed base of cellular M2M modules expands. It’s too early to tell which technologies will be mainstream and which niche. It could be that cellular NB-IOT was too late, it will fail in the short term, it can win in the long term, and the industry will struggle to make any money from it. At $2 a year, 20 billion devices will contribute around 4% of current global mobile subscription revenues.

New versions of communication standards will be taken into use in 2017. For example Bluetooth 5 that adds more speed and IoT functionality. In 2017, we will see an increase in the number of devices with the new Bluetooth 5 standard.

Industrial IoT to gain traction in 2017. Industrial applications ultimately have the greater transformative potential than consumer products, offering users real returns on investment (ROI) rather than just enhanced convenience or “cool factor”. But the industrial sector is conservative and has been slow to embrace an industrial IoT (IIoT), but is seems that they are getting interested now. During the past year there has been considerable progress in removing many of the barriers to IIoT adoption. A global wide implementation of an IIoT is many years away, of course. The issues of standards and interoperability will most likely remain unresolved for several years to come, but progress is being made. The Industrial Internet Consortium released a framework to support development of standards and best practices for IIoT security.

The IIoT  market is certainly poised to grow. A Genpact research study, for instance, indicates that more than 80% of large companies believe that the IIoT will be essential to their future success. In a recent market analysis by Industry ARC, for instance, the projected value of the IIoT market will reach more than $120 billion by 2021. Research firm Markets and Markets is even more optimistic, pegging IIoT growth at a CAGR of 8% to more than $150 billion by 2020. And the benefits will follow. By GE’s estimate, the IIoT will stimulate an increase in the global GDP of $10 to $15 trillion over the next 20 years.

Systems integrators are seeking a quick way to enter the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) market. So expect to see many plug and play IoT sensor systems unveiled. There were many releses in 2016, and expect to see more in 2017. Expect to see device, connectivity and cloud service to be marketed as one packet.

IoT analytics will be talked a lot in 2017. Many companies will promise to turn Big Data insights into bigger solutions. For industrial customers Big Data analytics is promised to drive operational efficiencies, cut costs, boosting production, and improving worker productivity. There are many IIoT analytic solution and platform suppliers already on the market and a growing number of companies are now addressing industrial analytics use.

In 2016 it was all bout getting the IoT devices connected to cloud. In 2017 we will see increased talk about fog computing.  Fog computing is new IoT trend pushed by Cisco and many other companies. As the Internet of Things (IoT) evolves, decentralized, distributed-intelligence concepts such as “fog computing” are taking hold to address the need for lower latencies, improved security, lower power consumption, and higher reliability. The basic premise of fog computing is classic decentralization whereby some processing and storage functions are better performed locally instead of sending data all the way from the sensor, to the cloud, and back again to an actuator. This demands smarter sensors and new wireless sensor network architectures. Groups such as the Open Fog Consortium have formed to define how it should best be done. You might start to want to be able to run the same code in cloud and your IoT device.


The situation in IoT security in 2016 was already Hacking the IoT: As Bad As I Feared It’d Be and there is nothing that would indicate that the situation will not get any better in 2017.  A veritable army of Internet-connected equipment has been circumvented of late, due to vulnerabilities in its hardware, software or both … “smart” TVs, set-top boxes and PVRs, along with IP cameras, routers, DSL, fiber and cable modems, printers and standalone print servers, NASs, cellular hot spots, and probably plenty of other gear. IoT world at the moment is full of vulnerable devices, and it will take years to get then replaces with more secure devices. Those vulnerable devices can be used to make huge DDoS attacks against Internet services.  The 2016 October 21 cyberattacks on Dyn brought to light how easily many IoT devices can be compromised. I expect that kind of incidents will happen more in 2017 as DDoS botnets are pretty easy to build with tools available on-line. There’s no question that everyone in the chain – manufacturers, retailers and consumers – have to do a better job securing connected devices.When it comes to IoT, more security is needed.



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    SIL STRIKING POINT: Will all lighting become connected?

    Strategies in Light (SIL) conference co-chair and Strategies Unlimited research director PHILIP SMALLWOOD unveils the drivers and trends that led to creating an SIL track that questions the value of connected lighting and IoT in the lighting market.

    We’ve all heard a great deal about the Internet of Things (IoT) revolution that is taking place at the moment, especially since it appears that new connected products, from thermostats to tea kettles, are popping up on weekly basis. While some may trivialize connected products as nothing more than a toy or trinket that might make certain tasks easier, the lighting industry has not. Many in the industry know that lighting is in the perfect position to take advantage of this interconnectedness since it is already widely and ubiquitously distributed throughout the globe, connected to a power source, and increasingly joining the digital era. However, as with all revolutions, in order to survive and thrive in the new world, one must be able to adapt, improvise, and innovate.

    Session 3: Wireless Communication Protocols. The increased number of wirelessly connected lighting products has led to the introduction and expansion of several wireless communication protocols for use within these systems. While these systems are mostly able to compete, they each have inherent capabilities and limitations. This session will be a panel discussion covering multiple wireless technologies, including Bluetooth, ZigBee, Wi-Fi, Thread, 802.11ah, cellular, and low-frequency proprietary solutions, with panelists from Lutron Electronics, Xicato, and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL).

    Session 4: Data Analytics. One of the main interests in the IoT and connected lighting has to do with the potential data that could be gathered and analyzed in an effort to improve both the way we interact with our environment and the way our environment reacts to our behavior.

    Session 5: Network Security. In October of this year, several popular websites, including Twitter, Netflix, and Airbnb were brought to a halt with two distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks on the company that manages their servers. While the threat of this kind of attack has always been present, the fashion in which it took place was worrisome, since several common IoT devices were used to overwhelm these servers. If connected lighting devices want to become mainstream, then manufacturers need to better design and enforce security into their systems.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Street lights will learn from the bigger picture in IBM, Echelon IoT partnership

    Watson cognitive computing will combine external and streetlight data to optimize lighting for public safety, traffic, energy, you name it.

    Controls company Echelon Corp. has teamed with IBM’s Watson Internet of Things group to help optimize streetlight operations by analyzing data collected both from the lighting infrastructure as well as from external sources.

    IBM describes Watson IoT as a cognitive computing system that learns from experience. It is a type of artificial intelligence.

    The general idea is that Echelon gateways and controls will send information about streetlight operations to a Watson cloud computing system. The Echelon hardware could also deliver information gathered from sensors mounted in luminaires or on light posts. Watson would combine the Echelon information with other data — perhaps about news, weather, or historical events — to help continually adjust streetlights and provide optimal settings in the face of crime, weather, traffic conditions, big shopping days, you name it.

    Echelon provided little detail on how the system will work or on what sort of information it might pluck from outside the lighting infrastructure.

    “The IBM Watson IoT platform enables the access to external data sets and the ability to extract “intelligence,”

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    English county shows the way in smart street lighting (MAGAZINE)

    Remember when lights were for illumination? Hampshire’s 155,000 Internet-connected LED luminaires stand to do much, much more, reports MARK HALPER. They might even direct traffic, monitor air quality, and tell visitors what’s on in the cities.

    Wind your way along the highways of Hampshire, England, and chances are the street lights won’t stand out to you as anything other than, well, street lights. They might look equally innocuous

    But look closely, and something is changing. It’s not just that the luminaires no longer give off the yellowish glow of the former low-pressure sodium (LPS) lamps. No, that’s old news. Hampshire started replacing its LPS lights in 2010 with a mix of whiter light sources including LEDs, high-pressure sodium (HPS), fluorescent, and others. It was part of a huge energy-and-cost savings push that included a new wireless central management system (CMS) in which operators could not only turn lights on and off remotely, but could also dim and brighten them and monitor outages from a central point without dispatching watchmen.

    But now, with the CMS infrastructure already in place tying 155,000 street lamps into a ZigBee wireless mesh information technology network installed originally for controlling and monitoring the light levels, those same lights and the furnishings that house them are poised to become much more than sources of illumination.

    Pondering the possibilities

    Sims and Mitchell will be the first to say that they are still in the early stages of formulating and trialing ideas, none of which are yet in widespread practice across the county, but some of which are in a small pilot phase. Many of the test schemes deploy sensors from Zaragoza, Spain-based Libelium, and in some cases they are designed to feed into a cloud data system via an open-source system called Sentilo, developed primarily by the Barcelona City Council but which has other contributors.

    For example, Hampshire is equipping light poles in popular areas of Winchester with Bluetooth iBeacons that transmit information to smartphones about events in the city. Hampshire uses the existing ZigBee network to update and refresh the information, and then pushes it to users’ phones and other gadgets via Bluetooth.

    And in Southampton, the city council is trialing a system that uses Libelium sensors to detect air quality, taking note of CO2 emissions and various pollutants such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide.

    “The sensors can attach to anything,” said Sims. “They happen to be attached to the light posts at the moment, because it’s a relatively sensible place to put them. You can effectively deploy them wherever there’s a Mayflower radio network, which is pretty much everywhere there’s a main road in Hampshire.”

    Mulling the monetization

    “The capturing of the data is in some ways the easy part,” said Sims. “We’re trying to work out how to monetize this. There’s no point in capturing the data for the sake of it. It has to be giving something useful.”

    For instance, he noted that the pollutant system might not be an easy sell, because the UK government’s Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) already operates elaborate environmental monitoring stations. But, he said, those cost on the order of £200,000 (about $246,000), while sensors from Libelium cost less than £1000 (about $1229) and can potentially provide a useful, if not as complete, set of readings.

    “There’s a compelling financial argument there,” said Sims. “There is a kind of ongoing process to try to work out whether the environmental data is accurate enough to supplement or replace the high-end DEFRA stuff.”

    “Predominantly, it’s mainly trials at the moment, in part because local councils don’t seem to know what they require,”

    “We just don’t necessarily understand yet what information councils find useful and are willing to pay for,”

    Data dilemma

    The list of possibilities is as big as the imagination. One issue, though: To what extent should any data that the systems collect be for sale versus free and open to the public?

    “It depends a bit on the local authority,” noted Sims. “There’s a big move to ‘open data,’ which I think is a good thing. But there’s an obvious conflict there between open data and monetizing the information. It depends on the local authority. Local authorities might make available aggregate data or time-delayed data for free. The way things seem to be going is if the council is paying for the installation of the infrastructure, they make the data free. I think that seems to be the sensible way of doing it. If you’re a local authority, you’ve fundamentally paid for this stuff with public money. It’s different if a private company is coming in and paying to install the network.”

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The Week In Review: IoT
    Gartner forecast; Android Wear 2.0; IoT World.

    There will be 8.4 billion connected things in use this year, a 31% gain from 2016, and leading up to 20.4 billion connected devices in 2020, according to Gartner. The market research firm estimates worldwide spending on endpoints and services will hit nearly $2 trillion in 2017. Greater China, North America, and Western Europe account for two-thirds of the IoT installed base this year. Consumer IoT represents 63% of all applications, Gartner said, with smart televisions and digital set-top boxes leading the consumer side, while smart electric meters and commercial security cameras are topping business IoT applications.

    The Internet of Things in Healthcare Market report anticipates spending of $136.8 billion in 2021

    Grand View Research forecasts the retail IoT market will be worth $94.44 billion by 2025, up from $13.51 billion in 2015.

    The IoT Cybersecurity Alliance has been established by AT&T, IBM, Nokia, Palo Alto Networks, Symantec, and Trustonic. AT&T reports there has been a 3,198% increase in attackers looking for IoT device vulnerabilities in the last three years. In a 2016 survey of business leaders, 58% of respondents said they weren’t confident in the security of their IoT devices, AT&T adds.

    Google on Wednesday introduced Android Wear 2.0

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    $10 Smart Home

    Hacking available cheap home automation components to make smart home with open source software

    This project uses cheap hacked off-the-shelf RC switches as smart home relays by hacking remotes and connecting them to Raspberry Pi computer running smart home software such as OpenHAB, Calaos, Domoticz, Home Assistant or OpenMotics.

    One of the most complex parts of doing home automation is controlling mains devices such as lights. Specialised modules are expensive, while open source / DIY solutions take a bit of time to assemble and are dangerous to debug.

    At the same time 4-way remote controlled light switches are available online for under $10 delivered on Amazon and even cheaper on Aliexpress or eBay.

    Remote controls of these switches operate at 12v rather than mains supply, making them perfect candidates for hacking and connecting to fully-featured home automation software.

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IBM Watson: How it Works

    Learn how IBM Watson works and has similar thought processes to a human.

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Smart locks for Scandinavian Doors

    locks for the Scandinavian marked has not been the best when compared to other countries of the world. The smart lock for my front door has been a missing item in my goal to reach total control. This post will cover some of my experiences. I will in particular cover the Norwegian Smart Lock IDLock and also how it plays in a Fibaro smart home system.

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Home appliances control using SONOFF TH10

    Sonoff TH10/TH16 is a smart switch version of Sonoff which can monitor and set temperature and humidity through the iOS/Android APP eWeLink.

    Sonoff TH10/TH16 is a smart switch version of Sonoff which can monitor and set temperature and humidity through the iOS/Android APP eWeLink. Just as the name indicates, the Sonoff TH device supports two current supply specifications: 10A or 16A. It features presetting the range for temperature or humidity. When the temperature or humidity of the environment fall within the range, it will automatically turn on or off the connected devices. It supports three kinds of temperature and humidity sensors


  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Forgot About Valentine’s Day? A Quick IoT Valentine

    Did you forget about Valentine’s Day? Do you need a quick project to get ready for Valentine’s Day? [Becky Stern] has you covered. She’s whipped up a neat Internet-enabled Valentine project which should be pretty quick to put together.

    At its heart (pun intended) is an ESP8266 microcontroller, in this case an Adafruit Feather Huzzah.

    Internet Valentine

    Send your valentine a note through the net! This DIY electronics project uses a small vibrating motor to gently wave a tissue paper heart and flash an LED when it receives instructions over the internet from another device. I built two versions of the ESP8266 wifi circuit, also equipped with two buttons for triggering the two commands. The devices talk over the Adafruit IO cloud data service to communicate with each other from anywhere with wifi, and I’ll show you how to activate your valentine with the API gateway service IFTTT as well, in case you only want to build one valentine circuit.

    This is a pretty easy Internet of Things project!

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    WiFi Pioneer Cees Links Sets His Sights on the Smart Home
    Winner of Design News’ 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award says the IoT will be much bigger than the WiFi revolution.

    Cees Links believes the Internet of Things (IoT) is waiting for the next “Steve Jobs moment.”

    Links, winner of the Design News 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award, knows about Steve Jobs moments. While making a presentation on an old-fashioned overhead projector at Apple Inc.’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. in 1998, Links learned how quickly Jobs could change the course of history. “He knew what he wanted,” Links told Design News recently. “As I put foils on the projector, he talked. After two or three foils, he said, ‘Is it clear what I want?’ I said yes, and he stood up and walked out of the room.”

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ken Yeung / VentureBeat:
    Nest adds automatic door activity detection and animated push notifications for Aware subscribers, adding to 24/7 video recording, more

    Nest adds automatic door detection and animated push notifications for subscribers

    Nest has updated its mobile app with additional features designed specifically for subscribers of its Aware program. Today, the Google-owned company announced that automatic door detection and animated push notifications are available for premium customers. The goal is to reduce the number of irrelevant alerts while getting you to the important ones faster.

    Nest Aware, a premium service available through the Nest app, initially offered 24-hour a day, 7-day a week continuous high-definition recording, up to 30-day video history, and more across all the company’s products, including the Nest Cam Outdoor. Eventually, the program evolved to include a feature called Sightline, which showcases key moments from available devices.

    When you receive an alert, you don’t want to waste seconds unlocking your phone and opening up the Nest app. So now the company’s app will show important info on your lock screen so if it’s a false alarm, you can move on with your day, and if there’s a delivery person, friend, or stranger at your door, you can take care of them right away. This offering is available to those with Android 7 or iOS 10.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Test More Complex For Cars, IoT

    Safety-critical markets add new challenges for testing methodology, which can affect functionality, reliability and yield.

    With increasing focus on safety-critical semiconductors—driven by ADAS, IoT, and security—functional safety concerns are going through the roof. Engineering teams are scrambling to determine how to conduct better in-field or online testing because test no longer can be an afterthought.

    This has been a common theme across the automotive ecosystem for the past few years, and as the automotive electronics market continues to ramp it has taken on a new sense of urgency. But along with that, the methodologies for conducting those tests and the ramifications of the power involved in those tests are coming under increased scrutiny because of their impact on yield, quality, and the long-term reliability of systems.

    But the actual test modes can be so complex that to test in situ, or to do a full system emulation, is difficult. So test modes are put into a chip to be able to take advantage of whatever internal BiST is possible, such as subsystem that does not require the full stack of the protocol or of the algorithms to verify its existence.

    There is some overhead associated with test, however. Compared with functional mode, for example, test mode adds power challenges.

    Finally, it is important to perform specific design and simulation checks to verify testing on low power designs including:

    Low power verification of the DFT structures and power-aware test patterns;
    Static checks after DFT implementation, and
    Validation of correct power behavior during Verilog simulation of generated test patterns.

    Test has always been the bogeyman where the worst pathological situations are created on the tester.

    “Even more interesting isn’t scan, but it’s things like LBiST and MBiST where it’s not sitting on the tester but now it’s in the product,”

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Is 2017 the year of the smart meter?

    Imagine how far we’ve come in the last few years. At first we just talked about machine to machine (M2M) applications, then we started talking more broadly about the Internet of Things (IoT). Today, with the number of devices forecasted to be connected to the internet, alternate networks need to be considered to anticipate how we can manage and track all the new assets that will be interconnected.

    High data rate networks like 3G or 4G not required

    Ultra-low-power and low data rate applications make up one domain that is particularly well suited for this discussion. For example, devices that address the smart meter domain, building or home control as well as asset tracking and monitoring do not need to run over traditional high data rate telecommunications networks such as 3G or 4G. There are a number of good reasons to seek alternative solutions reaching from cost per connection, handling of SIM cards

    Countries, especially China, are embracing the adoption of smart meters

    by the end of 2016 there were an estimated 700 million smart meters installed worldwide. Of these, half of them are in China. In Europe, new EU standards are driving massive adoption

    According to EC Europa, figures for the European Union show that there are aims to replace 80% of electricity meters with smart meters by 2020, or 200 million smart meters for electricity.

    Also, with the increased adoption of renewable energy such as solar or wind energy many households have become energy producers over the past few years instead of being consumers only, so the grid needs to communicate in two ways now.

    Alternative sub GHz RF networks cut through the noise of crowded urban networks

    Typically, these types of applications could be moved to alternative networks that use sub GHz RF technology. Sub GHz can cover a wide range of frequency bands

    Sigfox and NXP provide industry with low-power device-to-cloud smart metering solution that works around the world

    NXP’s multi-standard RF Sub-GHz transceiver platform offers a turnkey solution that provides flexibility and scalability for these types of integrated solutions for low-power IoT applications.

    Sigfox has built a global network to listen to billions of devices broadcasting data. This network can pick-up very small signals sent by IoT devices using the lowest amount of energy. Because of this network, the lack of standardization is overcome and the same end-to-end solution is used across different geographies

    Smart grids and meters

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A Circuit for Sensors that Never Stop Listening

    With the addition of a tiny circuit that consumes little more than the power of a human cell, the batteries inside sensors could last for years sniffing out chemicals, listening for voice control keywords, or feeling for earthquakes.

    The circuit, recently unveiled by researchers at the University of Bristol in England, is a new spin on the voltage detector, a device that monitors the health of power supplies inside things like cars and factory equipment. But while these devices normally chew through battery power to work, the new circuit can remain asleep until woken up by an electrical pinch from sensors.

    The invention of the circuit is one of the latest attempts to improve sensors so that they can run for years without needing to be frequently recalibrated or recharged.

    The UB20M, as the patent-pending circuit is called, only wakes up an electronic device when something like an accelerometer feels movement or a microphone hears a sound, generating a voltage. That allows a sensor to keep watching its surroundings, consuming so little standby power it might as well be asleep, the researchers said.

    UB20M voltage detector increases battery life

    UB20M voltage detector IC

    The new UB20M voltage detector IC in Fig. 1 enables zero-power sensing and listening. It allows circuit designers to eliminate standby power, to develop circuits that perform continuous monitoring without using battery power, and to implement wireless wake-up with zero receive power. The device is a sensor-driven circuit that requires no power supply, instead it uses power from a sensor signal to wake up. Suitable sensors are wireless antennas, infrared diodes, piezoelectric accelerometers, and other voltage-generating sensors.

    A sensor circuit is used to generate a small voltage, 650 mV is sufficient, and the voltage detector is then able to trigger an open-drain output, which activates a switch

    Its input is rugged and survives 20 V without using traditional protection circuits that would clamp the signal

    We have demonstrated, using the UB20M voltage detector, an IR receiver circuit that uses no power during listening
    This could be applied to TVs or any IR remote control or triggering mechanism. The extremely low quiescent current of the detector of 5.4 pA (at 1 V), allows the detector to be powered up from photodiodes that are illuminated by an infrared TV remote controller.

    The UB20M voltage detector makes continuous sensing possible without use of a power source. Its power requirements are a few picowatts, and therefore conventional voltage-generating sensors, such as photodiodes, piezoelectric accelerometers, acoustic sensors, and RF receiving antennas can power the device up.

    the input current of the voltage detector to be below 10 pA while the sensor is being monitored. Once the sensor output reaches the detector threshold of 0.5 V, the input current rises temporarily to just over 1 nA, returning back to below 10 pA once the detector has triggered. At 2.4 V there is another jump to just above 100 pA.

  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Outdoor lighting control

    The latest outdoor lighting control systems must be equipped to meet today’s growing demands for lower energy consumption and reduced costs. Fitted with occupancy sensors, a lighting control system can help save energy by dimming the light level of streetlights during off-peak times, such as the middle of the night. In this case, a streetlight only brightens when there is traffic. Further, a sophisticated outdoor lighting control system simplifies lighting infrastructure maintenance for outdoor lighting operators, such as municipalities, by notifying the operator when a lamp fails. This saves the cost of manpower verifying in person that lamps still work. Similarly, a lighting control system can precisely measure power consumption of outdoor light poles, which increases billing accuracy of the utilities.

    Smart cities require outdoor lighting control

    With cities today becoming smarter and smarter, operators are interested in equipping outdoor lighting control systems with a growing number of capabilities that reach far beyond providing light to an area. They include:

    Parking lot management
    Speed detection
    Air quality control
    Safety monitoring

    However, as outdoor lighting control systems are equipped with greater capabilities and become integrated in smart cities, they grow more vulnerable to attacks. By protecting an outdoor lighting control system with the right security measures from the get-go, hackers are unable to manipulate lighting systems or access transmitted data.

    Infineon has teamed up with the Munich-based start up eluminocity and Intel® to drive today’s smart cities into the future.

  16. Tomi Engdahl says:


    eluminocity, Infineon and Intel® have teamed up to enable
    tomorrow’s smart, globally connected cities. The three compa
    nies are combining leading assets to deliver precise sensing
    capabilities, secure data transmission and ready-to-use
    systems for multiple street applications.

    The jointly developed End-to-End solution includes street
    lights designed and developed by eluminocity, which act as a
    hub for smart applications. These street lights of the future
    are being equipped with radar sensors, power semiconductors,
    microcontrollers and security chips – all from Infineon.

    Furthermore, they will
    connect to the Internet via an Intel® modem to support new
    cloud-based business models. As a provider of advanced
    connectivity and cloud computing, Intel® enables smart end-to-
    end cellular technology for smart city applications supporting
    everything from real-time monitoring and control to over-the-
    air updates. These cloud solutions also feature security chips
    from Infineon to ensure trusted functionality in globally
    networked cities.

    he smart street light can detect if a parking
    spot is free and transmit this information to the cloud to inform
    nearby drivers. These connected capabilities are paving the
    way for intelligent traffic management in cities.

    Infineon’s industrial radar solutions are key components in
    many IoT motion sensing applications ranging from smart
    home security and automation through lighting control to
    touch-free switches.

    Intel® drives Cellular Connectivity for IoT on the path to 5G
    by supporting low power, high coverage use cases with LTE
    Cat.1/ LTE Cat.M1/ Cat.NB1 / 5G-IoT modules.
    Leveraging this power, the end-to-end solution will be
    independent of existing infrastructure, e.g. WLAN routers.
    By offering standardized technology and an open – not
    proprietary – solution, we can ensure high scalability, global
    availability and a vibrant ecosystem

  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Low-power voice recognition

    MIT researchers built a low-power chip specialized for automatic speech recognition. Whereas a cellphone running speech-recognition software might require about 1 watt of power, the new chip requires between 0.2 and 10 milliwatts, depending on the number of words it has to recognize.

    In a real-world application, that probably translates to a power savings of 90% to 99%, which could make voice control practical for relatively simple electronic devices. That includes power-constrained devices that have to harvest energy from their environments or go months between battery charges.


    Voice control everywhere
    Low-power special-purpose chip could make speech recognition ubiquitous in electronics.

    The butt of jokes as little as 10 years ago, automatic speech recognition is now on the verge of becoming people’s chief means of interacting with their principal computing devices.

    In anticipation of the age of voice-controlled electronics, MIT researchers have built a low-power chip specialized for automatic speech recognition. Whereas a cellphone running speech-recognition software might require about 1 watt of power, the new chip requires between 0.2 and 10 milliwatts, depending on the number of words it has to recognize.

    In a real-world application, that probably translates to a power savings of 90 to 99 percent, which could make voice control practical for relatively simple electronic devices. That includes power-constrained devices that have to harvest energy from their environments or go months between battery charges. Such devices form the technological backbone of what’s called the “internet of things,” or IoT,

    “Speech input will become a natural interface for many wearable applications and intelligent devices,”

    Today, the best-performing speech recognizers are, like many other state-of-the-art artificial-intelligence systems, based on neural networks, virtual networks of simple information processors roughly modeled on the human brain. Much of the new chip’s circuitry is concerned with implementing speech-recognition networks as efficiently as possible.

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Forgot About Valentine’s Day? A Quick IoT Valentine

    Did you forget about Valentine’s Day? Do you need a quick project to get ready for Valentine’s Day? [Becky Stern] has you covered. She’s whipped up a neat Internet-enabled Valentine project which should be pretty quick to put together.

    At its heart (pun intended) is an ESP8266 microcontroller, in this case an Adafruit Feather Huzzah. Several layers of tissue paper heart are stitched together and cut out into a heart shape and then attached to a spring. A vibrating pager motor is used to shake the it when a signal comes in. Two buttons are used to send the message and a red LED is used to light the heart up

    Internet Valentine

    Send your valentine a note through the net! This DIY electronics project uses a small vibrating motor to gently wave a tissue paper heart and flash an LED when it receives instructions over the internet from another device

  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Omega2: $5 Linux Computer with Wi-Fi, Made for IoT

    World’s smallest Linux server, with Wi-Fi built-in. Building for the Internet of Things doesn’t get easier than this!

    Introducing the Omega2, the $5 IoT computer.

    What the heck is an IoT computer? It is a Linux computer designed specifically for building connected hardware applications. It combines the tiny form factor and power-efficiency of the Arduino, with the power and flexibilities of the Raspberry Pi.

    The Omega2 is simple, even for people who are just getting started with building hardware.
    The Omega2 is affordable, starting at just $5.

    With the Omega2, we want to lower the barrier of entry, and allow everyone to take the leap into hardware development.

    Using the Omega2 is just like using a desktop computer. We’ve built simple and intuitive apps for you to interact with the Omega2. We also have an App Store where you can discover even more apps!For the more adventurous, you can even build apps with our SDK and publish them on the Onion App Store to share with the world :)

  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Companies need to change focus, mindset on IIoT security

    There are ways for companies to get an Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) project focused while overcoming the security challenges, but it requires a culture change and a different mindset.

    The trendy industrial technology for the past year is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). You can’t go to a trade show or read an industry magazine without getting overwhelmed with new IIoT products or services that promise to completely revolutionize your business.

    But what exactly is the IIoT? Can it really help your company? And will it expose your plant floor to new security risks?

    If you can’t answer those questions, you are not alone.

    It turns out most business executives don’t understand what IIoT is either. Many don’t understand what it can (or can’t) do for their company. And even fewer have a plan detailing how they might deploy IIoT effectively. According to a 2015 Accenture survey, 36% of 1,400 business leaders admitted their senior managers have fully grasped the implications of IIoT. Added to that, 7% developed a comprehensive strategy for IIoT with matching investments.

    Like all new technologies, IIoT is not without its challenges. According to a survey of IIoT experts conducted by Convetit, a company that organizes on-line advisory boards and think-tanks for Fortune 500 companies, the top four challenges of IIoT are:

    - The interoperability of different silos and systems
    - The resistance to organizational change
    - Problems implementing IIoT into existing processes, and
    - Increased security risks.

    Manage any of these poorly and an IIoT project can hinder rather than help a company.

    Rethinking IIoT

    The Internet of Things (IoT) is a term first coined in 1999, and it defines our era of connected devices. It has most recently been characterized by the explosive rate of the interconnectivity between intelligent objects that are “network-connected” in order to enable information sharing.

    It isn’t a revolutionary concept in and of itself

    In the industrial world we have been connecting smart devices for decades—network connected remote terminal units (RTUs), programmable logic controllers (PLCs), and human-machine interfaces (HMIs)—are nothing new. What has changed is the depth of integration, its complexity, and the range of devices available. Until recently, most plant data stayed on the plant floor.

    What has changed with the IIoT is massive amounts of industrial data can now flow either up into the corporation and “the cloud” or down into increasingly “smart” field devices. Information previously locked into proprietary databases on a plant floor server can now end up accessed by corporate applications around the world.

    It can simultaneously flow in multiple directions from multiple sources to different “data consumers.”

    “IIoT is the new label for something which has actually been developing for decades: The growing interconnectivity of ‘cyber’ devices which control physical systems,” said Steven C. Venema, chief security architect, Polyverse Group.

    Fear of change

    The unprecedented scale of information exchange means IIoT is often a transformative process for businesses. Unfortunately, transformations of the workplace often result in deep-seated concerns in staff at all levels.

    Not the Field of Dreams

    “If you build it, they will come” is not a model for successful IIoT rollouts—but it’s a frequent stumbling block for many companies. When creating an IIoT infrastructure, companies gain the most value by creating it with the end in the mind.

    As the foundation of such a strategy, it’s often wise to find a platform for alliances.

    It’s essential to interact with IIoT experts whose successes are relevant to your industry; these experts demonstrate by example, explaining their own pitfalls and triumphs to ensure you make the right decisions

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to implement wireless sensor networks for difficult industrial settings

    Pairing low-power wide area network (LPWAN) and Bluetooth low energy (BLE) networks allows the enterprise Internet of Things (EIoT) to connect wirelessly to remote locations.

    Some of the most interesting and impactful implementations of Enterprise Internet of Things (EIoT) technology are in industrial settings, where wireless sensor networks and controls enable organizations to monitor and manage machinery in ways that have never been possible before. Wireless sensors that operate on a small battery—free from hardwiring—can be located within industrial settings in spots that were not feasible with prior generations of industrial sensors and controls.

    An enterprise-class version of Internet of Things (IoT) technology-EIoT-has enhanced reliability, security, and comprehensive interoperability to address the stringent requirements of wireless implementations for industries such as manufacturing, health care, financial services and others. EIoT addresses these needs with technical features and design elements that far surpass those of traditional IoT used for less stringent consumer or commercial applications.

    Industrial EIoT challenges

    EIoT-enabled sensors and controls can go nearly anywhere within a given industrial environment, but until now there has been a catch. Not every industrial application has been ideal for going wireless because IoT deployments have two basic elements:

    Wirelessly-connected network of devices, which is installed with a series of sensors and controls linked with a short-range, low-power technology
    The network of IoT sensors needs to collectively communicate with other machines, controllers, and other parts of the network over a longer range of distance.

    The ability to reliably communicate over a long distance is often a significant obstacle in industrial settings

    EIoT-enabled sensors and controls are equally rare in remote settings, and in these settings low-power wide area networks (LPWAN) can help.

    Wireless EIoT: BLE, LPWAN

    The most widely used, short-range wireless technology in EIoT deployments is Bluetooth low energy (BLE; also known as Bluetooth Smart). The biggest reason for BLE’s popularity for EIoT is its power efficiency, which allows sensors and controls to operate for extended periods on a small battery.

    BLE is the core short-range technology for many industrial EIoT projects that are implemented or in the design phase, but a network of BLE-enabled devices must have a way to relay data and receive instructions over distance. The reliance on traditional telecommunications infrastructure (which enables that bi-directional communication via Wi-Fi or cell signal) has put growth limitations on these sensor and control networks, which is why a complementary, long-range technology is so important. By combining BLE with the ultra-long range and low-energy capabilities of LoRa (from the LoRa Alliance, which announced plans to form in January), companies no longer have to limit EIoT deployments to locations where telecommunications and power infrastructure is immediately available. This opens up an entirely new geography for IoT implementations.

    Using LoRa, BLE technologies for EIoT networks

    LoRa’s potential becomes apparent once it is paired with a technology like BLE. Together, they provide a set of short-range and long-range ultra-low-power wireless capabilities that expand the possibilities for EIoT networks. In urban areas, for example, an entire metropolitan area could be covered with just a few LoRaWAN gateways that serve as the backbone for BLE sensor networks that do not rely on traditional telecommunications infrastructure. In this way, LoRa and BLE lowers a number of barriers to expand IoT in populated areas like cities and towns, which would be significant because it provides a foundation for waves of creative IoT applications. However, the most dramatic impact of LoRA and BLE is giving wireless sensors and controls and other devices the ability to be installed anywhere.

    BLE makes that possible by allowing wireless devices to be squeezed in any physical location. BLE also allows those devices to work together in an integrated, short-range network that is controllable from, for example, smartphones or tablets that serve as remote wireless displays. LoRa builds on BLE’s mobile capabilities by serving as a relay that can send and receive data over very long ranges that can be extended with simple gateways to pass the signals along. BLE makes EIoT possible in even the smallest corner of a facility, and LoRa makes EIoT possible on any spot on the map. This will significantly speed up the IoT revolution.

  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Wireless takes control for industrial applications

    Wireless transmitters are being widely used for monitoring, but recent developments such as energy harvesting and legacy connections show wireless is also suitable for real-time control for any application.

    Wireless sensing is being used worldwide in tens of thousands of process industry applications, and manufacturers are reporting that wireless networks are in high demand and a growing segment within the industry. For connecting instrumentation to control and monitoring systems in the process industries WirelessHART from the FieldComm Group and ISA100 from The Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society (ISA) are widely used.

    A primary reason for using wireless is low cost. In comparison, a wireless transmitter can be installed and connected to the control system at a fraction of the cost of using a wired transmitter. For about one fifth to one third of the cost of a wired transmitter, a wireless transmitter can be installed and connected to the control system.

    Another major reason for using wireless is due to easy installation, particularly for battery-powered wireless transmitters. Wireless transmitters don’t need signal wiring back to a corresponding wireless gateway

    Wireless works in truly remote locations, such as offshore platforms, wellheads, lift stations, pumping stations, pipelines, tank farms, and oil terminals. In these situations, the wireless instruments are connected to a gateway, which can be hardwired to a local control and monitoring system. The gateway also can be hardwired to a long-range wireless transmission system.

    Despite the update rate, wireless control has already started for fast processes.

    Various advances and developments are coming together to make wireless control more feasible.

    Energy harvesting converts energy found in a process plant to electrical power that can be used by wireless devices

    The next trend is the increasing availability of wireless adapters that allow legacy instrumentation and plant equipment to connect to a wireless network. Several instrument vendors offer adapters that convert a standard 4-20mA transmitter to WirelessHART or ISA100.

    Hundreds of thousands of 4-20 mA instruments enabled with HART communications are installed in process plants worldwide, but many plants have yet to exploit all of HART capabilities for each instrument. Many plants use handheld HART interfaces to detect the instrument’s status and diagnostic information manually, but this information is unavailable to the control room.

    Wireless adapters also can be installed on control devices.

    Wireless transmitters can operate with an update rate of 1 to 2 seconds, which is fast enough for most process control applications. The wireless system’s network manager can schedule whatever measurement update rates are needed from the wireless sensors, so critical sensor data can get to the control system quickly.

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Newsletter – IoT is easy to pilot

    The 3 biggest concerns around IoT, accroding to a recent Bain IoT customer survey, are security, high price or unclear economic benefit and difficulty integrating IT with operational technology. At the same time as these concerns slow down some, the fast movers are already gaining significant competitive advantage from IoT. According to an Industry-Week/Genpact study, leaders are seeing significant returns in areas such as operational improvement, business agility, supply chain, optimisation, asset utilisation and regulatory compliance. The difference between leaders and those striving to implement IoT is significant. According to the same study 53% of those who have an IoT budget are increasing it from last year. Those who have seen the light, are increasing their speed and reaping in the benefits. Security is tackled seriously at several levels, both fysical and logical, in the way things are done and using the best and most advanced technology to do so. High price is a myth. With the cost of sensors coming down and the competition between platforms, making an asset intelligent can see pay back times measured in months.

    Distence Condence. No one likes too many clouds in the sky, nor is it typically a sustainable situation in the long term. Condence capsulizes the key features of needed features of an IIOT cloud for remote use- and condition monitoring solutions.

    Ease of use, Flexibility, Reliability, Scalability and of course Security – covering all levels from user identification, signed certifications in applications to bi-direcional communications. It also has the capability to adopt customer specific encryptions.

    Typical Distence pilot implementation project costs approx. 5.000eur and takes only 2 weeks.

    Those who sail, know, that it is impossible to steer a sail boat unless it is moving. It needs momentum. So does an IoT project. An IoT-strategy necessitates piloting. It is critical to pilot, experiment, iterate and learn from trial and error. What information is availabe and how can it be used.

    At Distence, we often start from one application, say condition monitoring, move to condition and operations monitoring, from monitoring to management. We keep bringing information users to ther table.

    Most of the pilots can be done at around 5000 euros, and can be kicked off in a matter of days. Using mobile technology, very little to no integration work is needed with IT-systems, making it extremely low cost and low risk to pilot.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    SmartEverything and the rise of the microphone array

    Arrays and the human ear

    Like most mammals, we have two ears. Their shape and position allow us to find the origin of sounds in our surroundings. This is so natural that we will spin around when we hear unexpected sounds, to help us locate their source. These stereo-acoustic abilities are a constant aid and help to protect our lives. They are a testament to the power of directional audio.

    Advanced MEMS microphones improve on nature. We can build very large microphone arrays with sophisticated processing algorithms to pinpoint the origin of sounds, hone in on a specific source (such as one person’s voice) or pointedly ignore unwanted sounds (such as the roar of a ventilator duct). These microphone arrays give us a much richer set of acoustic experiences, a greater understanding of our surroundings and more control over our environment.

    We can scale this principle to much larger arrays, from the seven microphones in the Amazon Echo to the 300+ microphones in Squarehead Technology’s AudioScope.

    The use of microphone arrays goes far beyond improving our listening. Every major technology company is now deeply invested in the field of computational linguistics – teaching our connected devices to understand natural human speech. But to understand speech the way we can, they must also hear as clearly as we do. They must emulate the directional, long-ranged hearing that we do instinctively.

  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IIC Releases Updated IIoT Reference Architecture

    The Industrial Internet Consortium has developed and released IIRA Version 1.8, an update of its reference architecture.

    Using the internet for industrial purposes has just become a tad easier. The Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) – the member-driven global organization that promotes the accelerated growth of the IIoT – has published version 1.8 of the Industrial Internet Reference Architecture (IIRA). The new version builds on version 1.7, which was originally published in June 2015. Version 1.8 incorporates emerging new IIoT technologies, concepts, and applications.

    The update was created by studying the deployment of IIoT systems that used the earlier version of the IIRA. “We’re trying to capture cross-industry use cases and refine the architecture we released in 2015,” Mark Crawford, open standards strategist at SAP, told Design News.

    Not Just for Industrial Internet Systems

    Crawford explained that those multiple industries include consumer IoT as well as industrial IoT. “While we have a partnership with Industry 4.0 for manufacturing, people need to understand that the IIC is dealing with a broader scope,” said Crawford. “Even within the consumer IoT, there are forms of industrial internet. We’re going to see more and more of those relationships between the consumer IoT and the IIoT, so the reference architecture and the security need to be available for both the industrial and consumer sides.”

    The new version of IIRA focuses on the process of developing IIoT system rather than the actual technology involved. “The hurdles with 1.7 were not technical. There was no cry from members on the concepts needed to architect an IIoT system. We were getting praise from systems architects,” said Crawford. “We’ve improved the architecture so that each viewpoint leads into the next viewpoint and as systems architects move through it. It helps to validate and revise the previous viewpoints.”


    Why a New Version of the IIRA?

    Like all Industrial Internet Consortium publications, the IIRA is a living document that will continually represent the latest thinking of the Industrial Internet Consortium and the IIoT community. Industrial Internet Consortium publications are addressing every aspect of the emerging IIoT and our Working Groups are committed to delivering practical, implementable deliverables that reflect new technologies, new concepts, and new applications as they emerge.

  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Germany Bans Internet-connected ‘Spy’ Doll Cayla

    German regulators have banned an internet-connected doll called “My Friend Cayla” that can chat with children, warning Friday that it was a de facto “spying device”.

    Parents were urged to disable the interactive toy by the Federal Network Agency which enforces bans on surveillance devices.

    “Items that conceal cameras or microphones and that are capable of transmitting a signal, and therefore can transmit data without detection, compromise people’s privacy,” said the agency’s head, Jochen Homann.

    “This applies in particular to children’s toys. The Cayla doll has been banned in Germany. This is also to protect the most vulnerable in our society.”

    The doll works by sending a child’s audio question wirelessly to an app on a digital device, which translates it into text and searches the internet for an answer, then sends back a response that is voiced by the doll.

    The German regulators in a statement warned that anything a child says, or other people’s conversations, could be recorded and transmitted without parents’ knowledge.

    “A company could also use the toy to advertise directly to the child or the parents,”

    “Moreover, if the manufacturer has not adequately protected the wireless connection, the toy can be used by anyone in the vicinity to listen in on conversations undetected.”

    Its head Monique Goyens said that “if connected toys, such as this speaking doll, can be hacked to spy on or talk to children, they must be banned.”

    She added that “EU product laws need to catch up with digital developments to deal with threats such as hacking, data fraud or spying”.

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Anybus CompactCom™ gives you multi-network connectivity with just one development project. Available in chip, brick or module format.

    What is Anybus?
    Just as the name suggests, Anybus products enable industrial devices to communicate with any fieldbus or industial Ethernet network — wired or wirelessly. Anybus is manufactured and marketed by HMS Industrial Networks and is today the world’s most widely used product family for industrial network connectivity.

    Where is Anybus used?

    Factory automation remains the main market for Anybus. Today, millions of robots, drives, sensors, HMIs, weight scales, etc. rely on Anybus communication

    Anybus solutions for manufacturers of machines and devices
    The Internet of Things means that more and more devices need to be connected to industrial networks and IT systems. Anybus gets machines and devices connected.

    Anybus solutions for system integrators
    As a system integrator, you need to connect industrial devices to different networks, retro-fit old equipment with new systems and connect to wireless networks and the cloud. Anybus can help.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *