- iot news week - IoT news of the week for August 31, 2018 – Stacey on IoT
Huawei bucks the wireless trend with PLC: Whenever we talk about IoT device connectivity, it’s generally a conversation about wireless technologies such as 5G or NB-IoT. Admittedly, we tend to overlook wired options. Huawei isn’t doing that, though. Instead, the company is committing to the new IEEE 1901.1 standard for Power Line Communications (PLC). The new standard supports 4Mbps, which is more than enough for bursts of device data. (TelecomTV)

Speaking of IoT networks, Verizon adds voice to Cat-M1: This might sound crazy, since Verizon already has cellular voice networks, but adding voice capabilities to its IoT network makes some sense. Think of smart alarm panels using Cat-M1 for connectivity: Aside from alerts of a break-in, a voice call to local authorities would be useful. Or perhaps a field worker notices some machinery isn’t working effectively based on sensor data she sees; a voice command to a central station could ask for a manual adjustment. Voice over IoT networks isn’t something I had previously considered, but with the right strategic vision, there’s potential here, and Verizon is smartly positioning itself to support whatever services IoT devices and users need. (Enterprise IoT Insights)

Electrolux bakes Google Assistant into more ovens: Stacey and I were early smart oven adapters; we both purchased a June Oven more than a year ago. Now it seems like every appliance maker wants to make their ovens smart. Electrolux announced that in early 2019 it will add Google Assistant into some of the ovens it sells in Europe. Cooks will be able to use voice commands to turn the ovens on or off, select a cooking program, or set the temperature. (Electrolux)

The battle for IoT may have new soldiers: Microsoft, Amazon, and Google are the big three when it comes to large-scale IoT solutions, but are they going to be the eventual winners? With GE dropping out of this market, you might think so. But the real concern is how industrial giants such as ABB, Schneider Electric, and Siemens will fare against new industrial players that want to grab data from every maker of industrial machinery and glue it together. The Uptakes and C3s of the world might be the real competitors to watch. (Which-50)

Dell is living on the IoT edge: This , Dell introduced its IoT Solution for Surveillance and IoT Connected Bundles for various industrial scenarios. The idea here is to use the open EdgeX framework for gathering and reporting data on the edge because “[t]he holy grail of digital transformation is selling data, services, and resources to people that you don’t know,” according to Dell’s CTO of IoT solutions, Jason Shepherd. I’d say he’s spot on, and if Dell can offer this as a framework, it stands to be a player in this space. (ZDNet)

Google Assistant gets multilingual: Great news for households with people that speak different languages: You can now select two tongues for the Google Assistant. Google will respond in the same language used for the query, so there’s no need to buy a Rosetta Stone course or keep switching the language settings. Watch this great video demo here. Even more interesting is how Google did it—with recurrent neural networks, of course! (Google AI)

Fibaro adds a quartet of integration partners: This week at IFA 2018, Fibaro announced new partnerships with IFTTT, CoolAutomation, Hunter Douglas, and Samsung. I love to see news like this because it provides more device choices for consumers. Owners of either a Fibaro Home Center 2 or Home Center Lite can now create IFTTT recipes for custom automations, while Samsung smart home appliance owners will be able to control them through Fibaro’s hubs and sensors. After all, your pet might not appreciate your Samsung robot vacuum cleaning the house when you’re not home. Got Hunter Douglas blinds? You can now integrate pre-defined blind and curtain scenes within the Hunter Douglas PowerView with your Fibaro hub. And CoolAutomation’s gain Fibaro support for managing HVAC systems as of this week. (Fibaro)

AWS adds over-the-air updates to Amazon FreeRTOS: One of the biggest challenges in IoT is efficiently updating devices. From a consumer perspective, it’s not terrible because at least there are often mobile apps to alert and install such updates in the home. But what about an IoT device deployment spanning large areas or with thousands of devices? Amazon is tackling that problem with over-the-air (OTA) support for its FreeRTOS platform. The updates are securely transmitted and are fault-tolerant, reducing the potential for a useless, bricked device. (eWeek)

Lenovo is expanding into more smart devices. A few weeks ago I found an FCC filing for a Lenovo smart bulb, which left us on the podcast wondering about its ultimate purpose. I’m still not quite sure, but this week, Lenovo officially announced a color-changing bulb, though it provided few details. I suspect it uses Wi-Fi or Bluetooth because there’s no mention of a required hub. The company also outed a smart outlet and a camera. Maybe this is a suite of products that first started with the Lenovo Smart Display? (Lenovo)

I took the Philips Hue Lily Outdoor spots for a spin: If you missed my review of these color-changing outdoor spotlights, you probably don’t know that each spotlight can be a different color. Or that they are IP65-rated for water and dust. And you missed the reason one of these lights costs $79 while the three-pack I tested costs you $280. Actually, there’s a really good reason, so check out the review. (StaceyOnIoT)

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