IoT News Roundup

By Rich Handley

People Power announces home-security solution with bot-enabled AI, hacker-resistant gateway; Sengled LED bulbs connect to IoT via Silicon Labs ZigBee technology; STMicroelectronics, Sigfox offer IoT security to industrial, consumer device makers; CLX Communications provides global cellular IoT connectivity for Top Fuel; Aurora Lighting to unveil new smart IoT lighting platform; Asavie launches industrial IoT accelerator kit with Dell, EpiSensor; Libelium presents IoT solutions for environment care in green cities, flood prevention, security, golf courses.

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People Power Announces Home-Security Solution With Bot-Enabled AI, Hacker-Resistant Gateway

Internet of Things software company People Power has announce People Power Pro Security, a home-security solution designed to help digital service providers—such as utilities, telecoms, cable operators and manufacturers—bring smart-home services to their customers. The system allows businesses to employ new bot services, designed for the faster construction and implementation of smart-home intelligence and People Power's IoT Gateway.

Built for digital service providers, People Power Pro Security integrates artificial-intelligence (AI) technologies through the use of bots—micro-services that listen to and understand real-time data streams from a user's life to learn patterns and produce more intelligent outcomes. The solution includes an array of expandable hardware products and sensors to accelerate time-to-market delivery of consumer IoT programs. Pro Security is designed to be easy to install for consumers with iOS- or Android-based smartphone apps, and offers optional 24-7 professional monitoring.

People Power is providing developer access to the new People Power Bot Lab and Bot Server to explore the creation of new services for smart homes and buildings. Bot Lab is an environment for adding new micro-services to existing devices or data sources. The service is complemented by People Power's IoT connectivity software, Presto, which provides free hosting to cloud-enable any IoT device from concept through commercial development. This allows businesses and manufacturers to integrate new features and services into legacy or in-market products. Bot Server lives in a cloud-computing environment to run bots that consumers can operate 24-7 in the background.

"Our announcement today identifies the moment when artificial intelligence for IoT systems moves from the theoretical to the everyday practical," said Gene Wang, People Power's CEO, in a prepared statement. "An industry first, our bots are on the job learning and producing highly-imaginative and valuable IoT outcomes. If a smart home isn't learning constantly with bot-enabled AI, then consider it outdated."

Included in the Pro Security solution is the new People Power IoT Gateway. The gateway incorporates NewSky Security's hacker-resistant device security technology, the company reports. The technology applies an AI-based solution that actively learns and enforces expected patterns of network traffic, identifying and remedying suspicious and potentially overwhelming network activities and anomalies. The People Power gateway is capable of protecting against both small and lethal IoT security threats.

The gateway is a ZigBee 3.0 hyper-compatible gateway for intelligent homes that provides simplified IoT deployments with an array of connected-device possibilities. Integrating with Pro Security to drive recurring service revenues, the gateway incorporates multiple home-networking technologies, including ZigBee 3.0, BLE 4.1, WLAN 2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n, and optional Z-Wave and cellular. Designed to incorporate emerging technologies, the gateway features both local Micro SD storage and USB 2.0 for expansion. The gateway is currently deployed in several IoT programs and is available for deployments under partner brands.

"Smart homes are dumb compared to what they need to be—conscious homes," said David Moss, People Power's president and CTO, in the prepared statement. "In the same way mobile app developers create new features for smartphones, now bot developers can create new features, services and experiences for every internet-connected device. Our IoT software suite and People Power IoT Gateway allows developers, manufacturers and digital service providers to deliver valuable new services and experiences for homes and buildings."

Sengled LED Bulbs Connect to IoT via Silicon Labs Zigbee Technology

Silicon Labs is providing ZigBee technology for the Element connected light bulb from Sengled. Silicon Labs' wireless systems-on-chip and ZigBee stack enable Element bulbs to connect easily to multi-node mesh networks deployed in smart homes, the company reports. Sengled creates intelligent lighting products that integrate consumer electronics with energy-saving LED bulbs. Using iOS and Android apps or popular smart-home ecosystems, consumers can control Element bulbs individually or as groups, customize an array of smart lighting features, and schedule lights to turn on automatically in the evening or off during daylight hours to conserve energy.

"Simple, reliable wireless connectivity is critical to the market success of the Element bulb," said Charles Sun, Sengled's VP of research and development, in a prepared statement. "That's why we chose to implement Silicon Labs' robust ZigBee stack, market-proven wireless SoCs and easy-to-use software development tools. Silicon Labs' global applications engineering team also provides unparalleled expertise in mesh networking design and worldwide RF certification."

According to the company, the Element bulb's sleek, modern design fits into existing light sockets and complements contemporary home decor. It combines the energy efficiency of an LED bulb with such features as customizable scheduling, color temperature tuning (soft white 2700K to daylight 6500K) and energy tracking, all controlled via cloud-connected wireless technology. An Element bulb uses 80 percent less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs, offers a 60-watt output equivalent while using only 9.8 watts, and is rated to last approximately 22 years.

"We applaud Sengled for winning awards and consumer loyalty in today's competitive, fast-growing connected lighting market," said Daniel Cooley, the senior VP and general manager of Silicon Labs' IoT products, in the prepared statement. "We're proud to provide application-critical wireless technology for Sengled's innovative smart lighting products, which are making a positive difference in the lives of consumers and for the environment."

ZigBee is a wireless mesh=networking protocol for connected-lighting applications. Based on the widely adopted IEEE 802.15.4 standard and operating in the 2.4 GHz band, ZigBee provides the scalability, interoperability, reliability, energy efficiency and security features required for wireless smart-lighting control. Silicon Labs is a supplier of such technology for IoT applications, including connected lighting.

STMicroelectronics, Sigfox Offer IoT Security to Industrial, Consumer Device Makers

STMicroelectronics, a global semiconductor company serving customers in electronics, has announced the expansion of its STSAFE family of secure elements with the introduction of a plug-and-play solution that provides security features to devices connected to the Sigfox low-power wide-area network (LPWAN).

The new STSAFE-A1SX secure element (SE) is based on a tamper-resistant Common Criteria EAL5+ -certified SE technology that enhances the integrity and confidentiality of transmissions to and from the IoT device over the Sigfox network, the company reports. The secure element runs an optimized secure application that combines ST's expertise in electronic security for applications in banking, e-commerce, and identity with Sigfox's expertise in networking and data communications for the emerging IoT world.

STSAFE-A1SX is a tiny, secure IC solution that connects to the microcontroller of an IoT application or module via an Intelligent Interface Controller (I2C) connection. The chips are provisioned in ST's secure-personalization center with device ID and keys that allow a secure connection to the Sigfox cloud, and further ensure data-exchange integrity and confidentiality. Whether the frame is an uplink or downlink message, the STSAFE-A1SX secure element generates or verifies payload proof of integrity, as well as optional encryption or decryption. Keys and other secrets are always protected inside the secure element during manufacturing and throughout the end device's full life, the company notes.

"By executing Sigfox security services within our certified tamper-proof STSAFE-A1SX, we support Sigfox Ready device makers and Sigfox application providers to implement state-of-the-art end-to-end security," said Laurent Degauque, STMicroelectronics' secure microcontroller marketing director, in a prepared statement. "The STSAFE-A1SX makes security over the Sigfox network even stronger and more straightforward. Our customers simply attach this secure element to their general-purpose MCU, such as an STM32, and focus on application development."

"It's more important than ever to consider and plan the security architecture at the very beginning of the design and development of an IoT solution," said Laetitia Jay, Sigfox's CMO, in the prepared statement. "Working closely with STMicroelectronics has been fundamental to offering state-of-the-art certified tamper-resistant security to our ecosystem of partners and customers. The integration of the ST secure element with the Sigfox libraries, the STM32, and the S2-LP sub-1GHz transceiver, provides an ultra-low power, high performance turn-key solution that brings end-to-end security in IoT and Sensor-to-Cloud applications to the next level."

The STSAFE-A1SX will come with tools and software to speed up its adoption by developers with or without expertise in secure designs. The device is available on expansion boards directly compliant with the STM32 Open Development Environment.

CLX Communications Provides Global Cellular IoT Connectivity for Top Fuel

Cloud-based communications provider CLX Communications has announced the deployment of a global cellular IoT connectivity solution for Top Fuel, a European fuel cistern, tank-monitoring and supply chain optimization specialist. Designed for enterprises that bring Internet of Things and machine-to-machine applications, products and services to market, the CLX IoT connectivity service provides a network connection anywhere in the world, the company reports.

The system is based on re-programmable SIM card technology. Enterprise customers need only insert the physical SIM card into an IoT device once, as the operator can be changed at any point during the device's lifecycle without replacing the SIM. Using the same over-the-air functionality, the SIM's can be automatically updated to use the best current network based on coverage or cost.

"When a business wants to deliver IoT products or services in multiple countries," said Kjell Arvidsson, CLX Communications' VP of corporate and business development, in a prepared statement, "a need for one global SIM card with coverage in all networks, at reasonable price-points, is a commercial and operational imperative."

The implementation of CLX's reprogrammable SIM will enable Top Fuel to offer its network of European customers, in thousands of sites, the ability to fully automate its fuel tank monitoring, tracking and order handling-process. This improves fuel and chemical deliveries based on real-time data from sensors in each tank site, the company explains, resulting in increased efficiencies and cost-savings in the complex logistics associated with the petrochemical industries.

"Previously, enterprises that wanted to build cellular IoT connectivity into their products had to deal with the complexity of managing multiple operator agreements," Arvidsson said in the prepared statement. "That's a problem if you are producing something that is shipped internationally or depends on the free movement of a vehicle for example. Our reprogrammable SIMs massively reduce this complexity by offering a single point of entry to a global network of mobile operators.'

Aurora Lighting to Unveil New Smart IoT Lighting Platform

Global lighting and technology business Aurora Lighting has announced that it will demonstrate its new connected IoT platform, known as AXiO, at EuroShop, a retail trade fair taking place on Mar. 5-9, 2017. Retailers will be able to learn about the benefits of IoT lighting with an exclusive preview of the platform, which incorporates Gooee technology.

AXiO has been developed in conjunction with Gooee Inside, an IoT enabling technology that enhances business intelligence and revenues by providing data regarding energy efficiency, human engagement and space optimization, the company reports. The platform offers users a range of toolsets and man-machine interface (MMI) features to manage the system from a single location.

"Our IoT integrated lighting platform enables retailers to harmonize their customers 'click and brick' experience across a wide range of application and installation scale, from convenience to targeted brand promotion and enterprise initiatives," said Neil Salt, the managing director of Aurora's IoT Division, in a prepared statement. "By designing and creating a lighting platform with Gooee Inside, an Aurora network of lighting is not only generating incredible visual and stimulating displays but valuable data and consumer insights for the retailer. Now decision makers have the ability in real-time to enjoy clear information based on timely trends that they can use to create even more value and advantage for example, creating special offers to enhance a product's sales."

Salt added in the statement, "As Gooee has tested and verified double encryption across all our platforms, retailers are able to get more of an understanding of the volume, velocity and flow of customers as well as staff within a store. This allows proximity marketing to enhance sales and employee management, while safe in the knowledge that customer and employee data, as well as their own, is protected at all times."

EuroShop will bring together 2,300 exhibitors in retail technology, POP marketing, expositio and event marketing, shop fitting and store design, visual merchandising and energy management. Aurora Lighting will be exhibiting in Hall 9, Stand C40.

Asavie Launches Industrial IoT Accelerator Kit With Dell, EpiSensor

Asavie, a provider of enterprise mobility management and Internet of Things connectivity solutions, has announced the availability of an Industrial IoT (IIoT) accelerator kit. The solution offers secure connectivity from the edge to the cloud, the company reports, enabling enterprises to jump-start their IIoT projects, get to market faster and generate revenues sooner.

Asavie's Industrial IoT Accelerator Kit comprises the Asavie PassBridge IoT Connectivity management platform, as well as the Dell Edge Gateway and EpiSensor industrial sensors. The solution enables companies to innovate, iterate and deploy IoT projects without changing their network infrastructure, from prototyping to final production. The offering is suitable for a variety of applications and industries, the firm notes, including energy management, predictive maintenance, asset monitoring, precision agriculture and utilities, with deployment capabilities suitable for interior and exterior, maximum-security and mission-critical environments.

The Industrial IoT requires the collaboration of multiple vendors, and Asavie offers a bundled solution to connect to the AWS cloud. The Asavie IIoT Accelerator Kit includes PassBridge cellular connectivity, a Dell Edge gateway and an EpiSensor IIoT platform.

"Asavie's Industrial IoT Accelerator Kit offers enterprises a one-stop-shop to securely, expedite their IoT implementations," said Ralph Shaw, Asavie's CEO, in a prepared statement. "The combined strengths of Asavie, Dell and EpiSensor are now available in one offering to enable the acceleration of industrial IoT innovation, reducing time to revenue and removing sales cycle delays. Finally, companies can quickly scale their IoT projects from the lab to global deployments, using the same architecture."

Libelium Presents IoT Solutions for Environment Care in Green Cities, Flood Prevention, Security, Golf Courses

Libelium has announced new Internet of Things solutions for smart-environment scenarios, for use in developing projects for green cities, flood prevention, security and golf courses. The company has launched a new program providing business opportunities, technical support and marketing benefits to the cloud. The new Cloud Partner Program focuses on offering interoperability with Libelium's Meshlium IoT Gateway to build successful cloud-based services and better market positioning.

"The best way to speed up the IoT adoption is offering our partners special services and benefits to create new business development opportunities together and to gain visibility and wider presence in a very fragmented market," said Alicia Asín, Libelium's CEO, in a prepared statement. "Now we have a complete program that meets our partners' needs." The company presented the Cloud Program at this week's Mobile World Congress event, held in Barcelona, Spain.

In order to expand the Libelium IoT Ecosystem, three new cloud partners have been integrated with Meshlium: Haibu, a South American platform; Arrow, an IoT distributor; and Labeeb IoT, a Qatar-based company. These businesses have been integrated with the Meshlium gateway, offering customers the possibility of deploying new projects based on these cloud services.