IoT News Roundup

By IOT Journal

NXP Semiconductors, Kontron collaborate on edge computing for Industrial IoT ••• Gozio Health adds Acuity Brands' IoT indoor positioning solution to its wayfinding mobile platform ••• Cypress Semiconductor Corp. offers software suite to accelerate IoT product designs ••• CenTrak intros hybrid ultrasound-Gen2IR IoT location and sensing solution ••• Kerlink, Aexonis partner on testing facility for manufacturers to evaluate LoraWAN devices ••• Silicon Labs provides battery-operated Wi-Fi devices for Internet of Things.

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The following are news announcements made during the past week:

PRESS RELEASE:


NXP Semiconductors, Kontron Collaborate on Edge Computing for Industrial IoT

NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ:NXPI) and Kontron, part of technology group S&T, today announced their collaboration to couple NXP’s i.MX and Layerscape families of Arm®-based processors with Kontron/S&T’s expertise in hardware and software to create Industry 4.0 solutions. The products will leverage Microsoft Azure IoT and Time Sensitive Networking (TSN) technologies to meet the needs of next-generation Industrial IoT implementations for cloud, edge computing and factory floor innovations.

New Industry 4.0 solutions include Kontron’s i.MX 8-based SMARC 2.0 and Q7 computer-on-modules. Additionally, Kontron plans to launch modules with Layerscape SoCs including LS1028 to support its own Industry 4.0 edge gateways as well as designs by Kontron customers later in 2018.

“With these computer-on-module (COM) and edge gateway solutions, Kontron accelerates customers’ prototyping and time-to-market for projects using NXP’s newest technologies,” said Laurent Remont, CTO of Kontron and S&T. “Partnering with NXP in the early stage of product development allows us to provide exceptional technology for innovative IoT and edge computing solutions.”

Kontron has over 30 years of experience in developing industrial PCs, gateways and servers as well as computing modules and VME/VPX embedded boards and systems. The company uniquely offers the software integration services to enable the Industrial IoT with pre-integrated solutions for IoT and embedded applications as a one-stop shop. Kontron also empowers OEMs and developers to leverage the computing framework of Microsoft Azure IoT Edge to create and deploy applications for on-premise embedded cloud applications from edge to fog to cloud.

“NXP technology coupled with Kontron/S&Ts hardware and software expertise leverages the strength of both companies to reduce time-to-market for our common customers,” said Tareq Bustami, Senior Vice President of Digital Networking at NXP. “We are pleased to work with Kontron to accelerate the realization of this next-generation of technology.”

NXP is a leading provider of embedded technology serving customers across a broad spectrum of markets. The company’s comprehensive and scalable portfolio of Arm-based processors are designed to ease development and deployment of intelligence on the edge suitable for Industry 4.0 and IoT applications. In addition to its extensive experience and expertise in connected industrial applications and security, NXP also offers a robust product longevity program to help ensure a stable supply for a minimum of 10 to 15 years from product launch. Participating products are supported by standard end-of-life notification policies.

“Industry 4.0 solutions require more intelligence and efficiency at the edge, and Arm-based SoCs, such as the i.MX and Layerscape families from NXP, are designed to deliver better power and performance efficiency for these applications,” said Drew Henry, senior vice president and general manager, Infrastructure Line of Business, Arm. “Enabling Industry 4.0 stakeholders with this innovative technology integrated into system level solutions from leading suppliers such as Kontron will accelerate the realization of this vision.”

PRESS RELEASE:


Gozio Health Adds Acuity Brands’ IoT Indoor Positioning Solution to Its Wayfinding Mobile Platform

Acuity Brands, Inc. (NYSE: AYI) today announced that Gozio Health, a healthcare technology company specializing in mobile wayfinding, has joined the Atrius™ Internet of Things (IoT) partner ecosystem. Gozio Health will be expanding its mobile platform to include Atrius™ indoor positioning solutions (IPS), leveraging the Atrius™ Navigator Software Development Kit (SDK).

Using the wayfinding technology developed by Gozio Health, patients can navigate from their home, to the correct parking area, and on to their point-of-care inside a healthcare system’s facility via their smartphone. Gozio Health provides an app that is branded for each healthcare facility and can be further customized with access to additional services such as the MYChart® patient portal and physician directory, allowing patients to meet their medical care needs. Gozio has earned an exclusive endorsement from the American Hospital Association for its wayfinding solution.

Gozio Health’s mobile platform will leverage the Bluetooth® low energy and Visible Light Communication technologies embedded in LED luminaires enabled with Atrius. The reliability and position-location precision offered through this solution will enhance Gozio Health’s current capabilities for wayfinding in indoor and adjacent outdoor spaces. By leveraging these embedded technologies within LED luminaires enabled with Atrius rather than stand-alone beacons, healthcare facilities can more cost effectively implement IPS technology while realizing the energy saving benefits of LED luminaires.

“We chose the Atrius IoT solution to expand our current mobile application development offering for our hospital partners,” said Joshua Titus, CEO of Gozio Health. “When we tap into the smart LED lighting technologies enabled with Atrius, patients at healthcare facilities will experience world class mobile wayfinding.”

PRESS RELEASE:


Cypress Semiconductor Corp. Offers Software Suite to Accelerate IoT Product Designs

Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NASDAQ:CY), the leader in advanced embedded solutions, today announced a unified software tool suite that streamlines product designs for the Internet of Things (IoT). The new ModusToolbox suite delivers the rich design resources of Cypress’ WICED IoT connectivity libraries and the analog and digital peripherals libraries of its PSoCmicrocontrollers (MCUs) within the familiar, widely-deployed open-source Eclipse Integrated Design Environments (IDEs).

The software enables IoT developers to design in the connectivity, processing, sensing and security functionality they need, leveraging the superb performance of Cypress’ Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and combo solutions, as well as its low-power, flexible and secure PSoC MCUs. Developers can personalize their user experience in the software to meet the unique requirements of their specific development with plug-ins, libraries and solutions from Cypress partners, as well as from the open source community. More information on ModusToolbox is available at www.cypress.com/modustoolbox.

“The Internet of Things cuts across a diverse range of markets and applications—from smart factory automation equipment to connected toothbrushes—but these smart products all share common, basic building blocks: connectivity, processing, sensing and security,” said Sudhir Gopalswamy, senior vice president of the Microcontrollers and Connectivity Division at Cypress. “Cypress’ ModusToolbox provides a single, easy-to-use software suite that enables our customers to integrate these building blocks while leveraging the differentiating features of Cypress’ industry-leading IoT connectivity and MCU solutions. ModusToolbox gives developers the familiar design experience of Eclipse IDEs and the flexibility to choose partners from Cypress’ IoT ecosystem that fit the specific needs of their designs.”

Cypress’ WICED (Wireless Internet Connectivity for Embedded Devices) is an integrated and interoperable wireless software development kit (SDK) supported in ModusToolbox. The SDK includes the industry’s most broadly deployed and rigorously tested Wi-Fi and Bluetooth protocol stacks, as well as simplified application programming interfaces (APIs) that free developers from needing to learn complex wireless technologies. In line with the IoT trend toward dual-mode connectivity, the WICED SDK supports Cypress’ Wi-Fi and Bluetooth combo solutions and its Bluetooth and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices. Cypress’ wireless connectivity solutions integrate an advanced coexistence engine that enables optimal combined performance for dual-band 2.4- and 5-GHz Wi-Fi and dual-mode Bluetooth/BLE 5.0 applications simultaneously. ModusToolbox enhances the WICED design flow with the latest Eclipse IDE features and makes it easy for other environments to incorporate designs.

ModusToolbox supports Cypress’ PSoC 6 MCU, which is purpose-built for the IoT. PSoC 6 leverages ultra-low power 40-nanometer process technology, low-power design techniques, a dual-core Arm Cortex-M4 and Cortex-M0+ architecture and configurable analog and digital resources to provide the industry’s lowest power, most flexible MCU with integrated hardware-based security in a single device. Cypress’ Peripheral Driver Library (PDL) provides a simple, consistent design approach for developers to maximize the ultra-low power, dual-core PSoC 6 architecture to extend battery life and provide efficient processing capacity.

The library includes easy-to-use proximity- and touch-sensing solutions based on Cypress’ industry-leading CapSense capacitive-sensing technology. ModusToolbox also enables developers to protect sensitive data in their applications with the PSoC 6 MCU’s hardware-based security features such as its isolated execution environment, integrated secure element functionality and crypto accelerators.

Cypress’ new PSoC 6 Wi-Fi Pioneer Kit works with ModusToolbox’s unified design flow to improve design cycle times for IoT device applications. The kit features a PSoC 62 MCU and a module based on Cypress’ CYW4343W Wi-Fi and Bluetooth combo chip. With the PSoC 6 MCU’s low-power, secure processing and the flexibility of its internal digital and analog resources, the kit allows IoT developers to easily implement robust wireless connectivity to support cloud ecosystem providers and enables longer battery life and small form factors. Cypress is demonstrating the ModusToolbox and the PSoC 6 Wi-Fi Pioneer Kit, along with its complete embedded systems solution portfolio, at the Embedded World trade show in hall 4A, stand 148 of the Nuremberg Exhibition Center from February 27 to March 1.

PRESS RELEASE:


CenTrak Intros Hybrid Ultrasound-Gen2IR IoT Location and Sensing Solution

CenTrak, the 2017 and 2018 KLAS Research Category Leader for Real-Time Location Systems (RTLS), announced today the addition of IRUS hybrid locating technology to its Internet of Things (IoT) location and sensing offering.

IRUS was specifically developed for use cases requiring Clinical-Grade Locating in open spaces, such as infusion areas, preoperative and post-anesthesia care units, and emergency departments. IRUS supplements an already diverse Enterprise Location Services platform, and brings increased flexibility with highly accurate sub-room location segmentation, at update speeds measured in seconds. The combination of technologies drives the most demanding location-enabled clinical solutions, including: hand hygiene monitoring, rounding compliance, contact tracing and nurse call automation.

The patented blend of Gen2IR and Advanced Ultrasound provides the accuracy and speed necessary for automating clinical workflow and improving patient care. IRUS reduces total cost of ownership, requiring less infrastructure compared to legacy systems. The synthesis of the technologies also overcomes interference challenges experienced using ultrasound locating in buildings with commercial lighting control systems.

IRUS is interoperable with CenTrak’s extensive line of waterproof tags, including the 31-day patient tag designed without seams, screw holes, or crevices for easy sterilization. IRUS infrastructure may be wired or battery-powered with a 5-year battery guarantee and are supervised and configurable using Connect, CenTrak’s configuration, system-health monitoring and advanced battery management platform. The technology can be deployed in conjunction with other native CenTrak technologies including Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), Wi-Fi, Low Frequency (LF), active UHF and passive RFID.

“The development of IRUS was driven by CenTrak’s continued commitment to transform patient care using the most advanced Internet of Things (IoT) technologies,” said Ari Naim, President and CEO of CenTrak. “We continue to invest significantly in R&D to expand our breadth of supported location and sensory technology, ensuring CenTrak meets the industry’s ongoing challenge to improve the patient experience.”

PRESS RELEASE:


Kerlink, Aexonis Partner on Testing Facility for Manufacturers to Evaluate LoraWAN Devices

Kerlink (ALKLK – FR0013156007), a specialist and global leader in solutions dedicated to the Internet of Things (IoT), and Aexonis, the category innovator of IoT mediation and management software, today announced their collaboration to simplify IoT deployment and open the market to companies and organizations that can manage their own IoT networks.

Kerlink is helping Aexonis build a live air IoT interoperability center of excellence at Aexonis’ offices in the city of Les Ulis, near Paris. The facility is designed to enable manufacturers, developers and other solution providers to come together to test, integrate and experiment with solutions and to demonstrate the high value of common IoT propositions.

Kerlink provided the IoT interoperability for the testing facility and environment of excellence with Wirnet iBTS LoRaWAN gateways to build a low power wide area (LPWA) network for manufacturers to test their LoRaWAN devices. Aexonis provided a virtualized mediation-and-management software suite to bring together a variety of IoT protocols, technologies, devices and applications and make them work together intelligently as one comprehensive holistic deployment.

“Aexonis is dedicated to simplifying IoT network deployments and bridging the gap between the growing list of disparate IoT applications, network access technologies and connected devices,” said Benjamin Maury, Global Head of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships at Kerlink. “Kerlink wholeheartedly supports this mission, which helps the entire IoT ecosystem.”

“Kerlink has been instrumental in the launch of our Live Air Interoperability Environment,” said Luis Alves, vice president of strategic alliances at Aexonis. “With the installation of Kerlink’s LoraWAN gateways, we now have a variety of LoRaWAN IoT devices turned up and controlled through the Aexonis CemTore mediation and management software, and we will be working aggressively to expand our LoRaWAN device interoperability in the future.”

PRESS RELEASE:


Silicon Labs Provides Battery-Operated Wi-Fi Devices for Internet of Things

Silicon Labs(NASDAQ: SLAB) has introduced a new Wi-Fi portfolio to simplify the design of power-sensitive, battery-operated Wi-Fi products including IP security cameras, point-of-sale (PoS) terminals and consumer health care devices. Optimized for exceptional energy efficiency, the WF200 transceivers and WFM200 modules support 2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi while delivering the high performance and reliable connectivity necessary as the number of connected devices increases in home and commercial networks.

“We’ve delivered the first low-power Wi-Fi portfolio designed specifically for the IoT, enabling breakthroughs in secure, battery-powered connected device designs that simply weren’t possible until now,” said Daniel Cooley, Senior Vice President and General Manager of IoT products at Silicon Labs. “It’s no surprise we’re seeing strong customer demand for Wi-Fi technology that fits within the tight power and space budgets of battery-operated devices, freeing end users from the need to connect to ac power sources.”

“The market for Wi-Fi devices in low-power IoT end node applications is forecast to grow from 128 million units per year in 2016 to 584 million units per year by 2021,” said Christian Kim, Senior Analyst for IHS Markit, a global business information provider.

Developers can speed time to market and miniaturize battery-operated Wi-Fi products with the WFM200, the world’s smallest pre-certified system-in-package (SiP) module with an integrated antenna. Silicon Labs’ WF200 transceiver provides a cost-effective option for high-volume applications and gives developers the flexibility to meet unique system design requirements, such as using external antennas.

The energy-efficient WF200 transceiver and WFM200 module provide an array of benefits for Wi-Fi enabled IoT applications: exceptionally low transmit (TX: 138 mA) and receive (RX: 48 mA) power 200 µA average Wi-Fi power consumption (DTIM = 3) contributing to ultra-low system power; superior link budget of 115 dBm for long-range Wi-Fi transmissions; small-footprint 4 mm x 4 mm QFN32 transceiver and 6.5 mm x 6.5 mm LGA52 SiP module, ideal for space-constrained applications; excellent antenna diversity and wireless coexistence in crowded 2.4 GHz environments; advanced security technology: secure boot and host interface, hardware cryptography acceleration supporting AES, PKE and TRNG; pre-certification by the FCC, CE, IC, South Korea and Japan to minimize development time, effort and risk; and comprehensive development tools and wireless starter kit including embedded and Linux host drivers, enabling developers to get started in minutes

Silicon Labs is sampling WF200 transceivers and WFM200 SiP modules to selected customers, and production parts are planned for Q4 2018. Contact your local Silicon Labs sales representative or authorized distributor for WF200 and WFM200 product pricing. For additional information, visit www.silabs.com/low-power-wi-fi.