IoT News Roundup

National Institute on Aging awards People Power grant for caregiver study with UC Berkeley ••• ADLINK smart gateway selected for Michelin-SoftBank tire-control system ••• STMicroelectronics unveils solutions for cellular IoT connectivity ••• Smart city, smart energy, IoT companies partner to launch uCIFI Alliance ••• GlobalSign launches platform to address IoT device security.
Published: July 19, 2018

The following are IoT-related news announcements recently released.


National Institute on Aging Awards People Power Grant for Caregiver Study With UC Berkeley

People Power, Internet of Things (IoT) software company providing white-label IoT solutions for energy, security and care services, has announced it has received first year funding of a research grant expected to total $4.5 million over three years from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) focused on in-home supportive solutions for dementia caregivers.

The results of the collaborative research with University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley) will produce critical information about how connected in-home services can best administer assistance and peace of mind to caregivers actively involved in providing care for a family member with dementia. Additionally, these findings will improve quality of life to help aging adults live more independently. The grant is funded through the National Institute on Aging whose mission is to improve the health and wellness of older Americans through biomedical, social and behavioral research focused on aging processes and age-related diseases.

People Power, an industry leader in the development and delivery of smart home solutions with artificial intelligence-based (AI) microservices for the energy and security industries, will leverage the company’s technical and human interface expertise to develop commercial care solutions based on collaborative research with UC Berkeley’s Professor Dr. Robert W. Levenson, a 2018 inductee into the American Academy of Arts and Science.

A recognized expert in the fields of emotional functioning and neurodegenerative diseases, Dr. Levenson will utilize state-of-the-art research methodologies to assess emotional functioning in persons with dementia and their caregivers and to evaluate the effects of People Power’s connected in-home services at the Berkeley Psychophysiology Laboratory, one of the world’s leading research laboratories for the study of human aging.

“We can help people care for their loved ones using smart home services that reduce stress, anxiety and loneliness,” said Gene Wang, CEO of People Power. “Receiving this grant and our collaboration with Professor Levenson at UC Berkeley is the first step in providing desperately needed support for caregivers through carefully designed connected services.”

To address a large and expanding global market opportunity, the goal of the initiative is the development of an affordable commercial service to increase safety and quality of life for both caregivers and persons with dementia. Building upon the foundation of People Power’s low cost, easy-to-install intelligent home security solutions, the customized service will target the critical needs of family caregivers including personal safety, health, daily activity monitoring and social integration.

“Caregiving for persons with dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases can be extremely stressful, and many caregivers experience marked declines in mental and physical health,” said Dr. Robert W. Levenson, Professor of Psychology at UC Berkeley. “Our participation in this collaborative research with People Power will address the profound intertwining of the lives and well-being of caregivers and persons with dementia as they engage in one of life’s most challenging and intimate relationships.”

This Small Business Innovation Research Project has been wholly funded by National Institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health under award number R44AG059458.


ADLINK Smart Gateway Selected for Michelin-SoftBank Tire-Control System

ADLINK Technology, Inc., a global provider of leading edge computing solutions, announced that its intelligent, industrial gateway has been selected for the Nihon Michelin-Softbank IoT tire control system. The first launch of an IoT tire monitoring system in Japan by a tire maker, the Michelin Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) Cloud Service provides improved safety and efficiency, as well as cost savings benefits, for industries such as fleet management and construction.

The TPMS system contains sensors that measure a tire’s air pressure and temperature, sending out alerts when these deviate from their standard levels. ADLINK’s industrial IoT gateway, the MXE-110i, provides an extremely compact form factor with versatile RF connectivity and fanless rugged construction to serve as the vehicle-mounted communications device. Softbank provides the IoT platform within the Michelin infrastructure and overall system. The versatility of the TPMS allows it to handle vehicles of all classes, including camper vans, light trucks, heavy vehicles, trailers and buses.

When factors within the tire are outside of normal tolerance levels, the ADLINK MXE-110i will send an email over-the-cloud to the end customer’s operations manager and the Michelin tire vendor. An alert will also go out automatically to the Michelin Rescue Network, which can dispatch a vehicle to provide assistance.

“The beauty of this system is that both the driver of the vehicle and the operations manager can monitor all of the vehicle’s data right on a smartphone, tablet, or personal computer,” said Vincent Tseng, general manager of ADLINK’s Asia Pacific region. “This information is invaluable for preventing blowouts and other problems. It increases safety and saves both human and monetary resources “

“Japan faces societal issues such as reduction in the working population and the aging of society. Particularly serious is the lack of staffing in the transportation, construction and agriculture industries. The improvement of productivity and reduction of workload are matters of great urgency,” said Paul Perriniaux, Managing & Representative Director of Nihon Michelin Tire Co., Ltd. “At Michelin we believe it our duty to contribute through our tire and related services, such as our TPMS.”

SoftBank anticipates business growth not just in communications infrastructure and services but also in the IoT field for mobility such as ride-sharing and automatic driving. “In facing the coming future of 5G and IoT, we support the development of new services for our customers as an IoT service platform for the further ‘value-fication’ of data,” said Yasuyuki Imai, representative director & COO of SoftBank Corp.

Based on the Intel Quark SoC X1021 and integrating Wind River Intelligent Device Platform XT 3.1, ADLINK’s MXE-110i industrial IoT gateway delivers manageability and security critical to industrial IoT applications. The IoT gateway presents an intelligent and robust embedded system supporting wide application development and easy service deployment, delivering outstanding performance in industrial applications such as smart city, facility management and industrial automation applications.


STMicroelectronics Unveils Solutions for Cellular IoT Connectivity

STMicroelectronics’ STM32 Discovery Packs for cellular IoT connectivity, which premiered at Embedded World and IoT Asia earlier this year, are ready to order through ST’s global distribution network.

Two variants are available, each containing an STM32L496 Discovery Board and STMod+ cellular expansion board with Quectel modem, ST Incard embedded SIM (eSIM) with EMnify profile supporting 2G/3G connectivity, and a microSIM socket for users wishing to use another MNO. The P-L496G-CELL01 pack is for connecting to current worldwide 2G/3G networks. The P-L496G-CELL02supports 3GPP LTE Cat M1/NB-IoT Release 13 with 2G fallback.

Connecting an STM32-powered device using 2G/3G or emerging LTE Cat M1/NB-IoT is fast and easy, leveraging the out-of-the-box simplicity of these packs. Sample scripts are included, which are ready to run in the Espruino JavaScript engine already ported on the STM32 microcontroller. The scripts can be freely customized to meet individual application demands.

To help streamline the transition to full C coding for optimum performance, each pack is supported in the X-CUBE-CLD-GENSTM32Cube software expansion package available online. This will soon be followed by the X-CUBE-CELLULAR package, which is based on FreeRTOS and includes a reference implementation of a cellular connectivity driver, a BSD-like (Berkeley Sockets) standard C API that eases integration of the application, and a simple API for seamless control of the cellular expansion boards.

In addition, ST has arranged with leading IoT-solution providers to let users trial important services such as cellular connectivity and related SIM management, Cloud Platform Services, and device management when evaluating their prototypes. Both P-L496G-CELL01 2G/3G and P-L496G-CELL02 LTE Packs are available now from distributors, priced $110.00 excluding local sales tax.


Smart City, Smart Energy, IoT Companies Partner to Launch uCIFI Alliance

An international alliance of market leaders from across the smart city, smart energy and IoT network sectors joined cities and utilities in announcing they will develop an open source, multi-transport wireless networking technology and data model that will unlock these markets by eliminating the dependency on proprietary solutions.

Meeting during the IoT Tech Expo Europe in Amsterdam, the uCIFI Alliance said that smart Internet of Things (IoT) projects for managing streetlights, parking, traffic, waste collection, power grids, metering and other applications are launched continuously by cities or utilities around the world. Despite this proliferation of projects, network owners face a hurdle to either integrate multiple proprietary systems and APIs or deal with a dependence on single-source suppliers for network hardware or software layers.

The uCIFI Alliance’s goal is to free end customers of their dependence on single-source suppliers and to drastically reduce the complexity for device suppliers and integrators to deliver data and services in a consistent manner regardless of the underlying network.

Founding industrial members of the uCIFI Alliance include Kerlink, a global leader in end-to-end network solutions dedicated to the IoT; EDMI, a worldwide leader in smart energy solutions, and Schréder, a global leader in smart street lighting. They were joined in the alliance launch by Engie and ST Engineering Electronics and pioneering end-customers, such as Sibelga (Belgium), the Brussels utility, Auckland Transport (New Zealand), and Nantes Metropole (France).

“Bringing smart technologies to the world’s municipalities and power-and-water suppliers allows tremendous efficiency in delivery of services, while dramatically increasing convenience for end users,” said Yannick Delibie, co-founder and CTIO of Kerlink. “But cities and utilities often have to untangle a host of unnecessarily complicated technical details to deploy their smart networks, which delays launch and adds cost. The uCIFI Alliance is committed to promoting simple, cost-efficient, open source wireless networking references to unlock the full potential of these smart networks.”

With LPWAN networks, each device supplier has its own data format, cloud and API. In addition, only proprietary solutions exist with sub-GHz long-range mesh networks. The founding companies of the uCIFI Alliance, and the cities and utilities that support this open initiative, share a common vision that these markets will be opened up if cities and utilities have the choice among competing but interoperable vendor products based on an open source code base.

Based in Beaverton, Oregon, USA, the non-profit alliance will specify a unified data model and interface across multiple IoT networks, including LoRaWANTM, NB-IoT and an open-source sub-GHz long-distance mesh network that shall also be specified by the alliance. This will provide both device-to-device and device-to-cloud IoT communication to cities and utilities independently from any proprietary vendor. In order to provide a truly open source implementation of the uCIFI specification, the alliance has chartered the Newticity project under the auspices of the Linux Foundation. Runtime, a global IoT networking provider, is leading the implementation of this free and open source wireless reference stack.

The standardized open source, sub-GHz long-range Wi-SUN-compliant meshing networking technology specified by uCIFI will complement existing transports, such as LoRaWAN, NB-IoT, and Bluetooth 5/Mesh creating a rich toolkit for solutions providers and their customers. This will provide higher network performance and allow device-to-device communication for use cases such as dynamic outdoor lighting and energy demand response.

“We are really excited about uCIFI. It will enable EDMI to offer a new generation of smart energy solutions, providing our customers with an alternative option for connecting their smart devices both in the utility and IoT space,” said How New Seng, CEO at EDMI. “With more bandwidth and an even more reliable network, we will provide more data and more services to our customers. Joining forces in the uCIFI Alliance with other IoT market leaders makes it possible to develop the only open and interoperable sub-GHz mesh network, requested by many of our customers”.

“With uCIFI, Schréder will provide the first truly open and interoperable smart streetlight solution, supporting both LoRaWAN and sub-GHz mesh with uCIFI-compliant interfaces, while existing solutions are proprietary and make cities depend on a single network or device supplier. The uCIFI Alliance is a real opportunity for Schréder to continue being the most innovative company in our field and to provide a new generation of smart city applications to our customers around the world”, said Nicolas Keutgen, Chief Innovation Officer at Schréder.

“Kerlink’s existing outdoor and indoor LoRaWAN gateways will soon be upgradable to also support uCIFI open mesh networks”, said Delibie, who also is CEO of Kerlink’s U.S. subsidiary, Kerlink Inc. “This will provide our customers’ end users with the ability to control, command and monitor millions of both constantly powered and battery-powered devices, thanks to the native combination of uCIFI mesh and LoRaWAN networking technologies, without the need to deploy extra infrastructure”.

“Joining the uCIFI Alliance reinforces ST Engineering Electronics’ efforts to ensure our WISX IoT solutions continue to adopt an open standard approach, delivering greater benefits to our customers and industry partners,” said Yao Shih Jih, General Manager, Info-Comm Systems, ST Engineering Electronics. “Our IoT solutions can be deployed across domains and industries, allowing seamless data exchange, analytics and sharing of software and tools for multiple applications on a common IoT platform. This will lead to the adoption of IoT with a shorter market cycle, enabling our customers to fully embrace the benefits of IoT interoperability.”

Together, the uCIFI Alliance members connect millions of devices every year. The alliance partners will conduct field tests of the uCIFI unified data model and the uCIFI open-source mesh sub-GHz networking technology prior to September 2018 and release a first open source version to member companies by end of the year.


GlobalSign Launches Platform to Address IoT Device Security

GMO GlobalSign (, a global Certificate Authority and leading provider of identity and security solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT), have announced the launch of its IoT Identity Platform addressing critical IoT device security requirements. GlobalSign’s next-generation IoT Identity Platform is a set of products and services flexible and scalable enough to issue and manage billions of identities for IoT devices of all types. Using Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) as the core identity mechanism, the IoT Identify Platform can serve the varied security use-cases of the IoT across all verticals, including manufacturing, agriculture, smart grid, payments, IoT gateways, healthcare, other industrial ecosystems and more.

The Platform supports the full device identity lifecycle, from initial certificate provisioning (both greenfield and brownfield deployments) to lifetime maintenance through to final sunsetting, decommissioning or transfer of ownership. Giving each device or endpoint a unique identity allows them to get authenticated when they come online and then throughout their lifetime, prove their integrity, and securely communicate with other devices, services and users.

The central feature of the Platform is IoT Edge Enroll, a full-fledged enrollment client used to provision and manage PKI-based identities to IoT devices of all types. Providing these unique identities to all devices enables trust within the ecosystem, allowing for mutual authentication between devices and systems as well as protecting communications from eavesdropping or tampering. IoT Edge Enroll provides a flexible and scalable way to deploy these identities and maintain them throughout the full device lifecycle, with added features such as device Registration Authority (RA), certificate lifecycle management, and expanded protocol support. The cloud-based IoT Identity Platform needs a way to communicate with end devices to deliver, validate and revoke identities, and IoT Edge Enroll acts as the enrollment mechanism.

GlobalSign can issue certificates at unprecedented speed and volume – more than 3,000 per second. There are three integration options and a combination of these can be used depending on a user’s environment.

IoT Edge Enroll – Delivering a comprehensive enrollment client with enhanced features that include device RA, certificate lifecycle management and expanded protocol support.

IoT CA Direct – Created for environments that only require a device identity issuance engine. In-house systems are able to communicate with GlobalSign’s services via a modern RESTful API, and handle device enrollment and lifecycle management.

IoT CA Connect – Ideal for environments using a third-party device and identity management solution which handles device enrollment and lifecycle management. In addition, it enables developers to issue certificates to devices directly from their own platforms.

“The GlobalSign IoT Identity Platform greatly improves the process of identity lifecycle management, from enabling customers to use our highly scalable managed PKI solution as an identity issuing engine to full-fledged enrollment and flexible API integrations with other application and platforms,” said Lancen LaChance, Vice President, IoT Solutions, GlobalSign. “The Platform meets a tremendous need in the marketplace as security is essential to IoT ecosystems, and is well-suited to low-cost IoT device implementations. Currently, we have a number of early adopter companies using the IoT Identity Platform with very positive results.”