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Predicting the maintenance

By Zenobia Hegde

It happens at the worst of times – late for a meeting, on the way to the rugby and even when you’re desperate for the bathroom. When your car breaks down, you can moan in retrospect, acknowledging the signs that it needed urgent maintenance. Thanks to technology, more specifically the evolution and application of cognitive learning, these frustrating occurrences will become a thing of the past.

Connecting the things

Analyst house Gartner forecasts that there will be 20.8 billion connected ‘things’ worldwide by 2020. Enterprises that stick to an old ‘preventive’ data methodology, says Mark Armstrong, managing director and vice-president International Operations, EMEA & APJ at Progress, are going to be left behind, as this approach accounts for a mere 20% of failures.

Predictive maintenance brings a proactive and resource saving opportunity. Predictive software can alert the manufacturer or user when equipment failure is imminent, but also carry out the maintenance process automatically ahead of time. This is calculated based on real time data, via metrics including pressure, noise, temperature, lubrication and corrosion to name a few.

Considering degradation patterns to illustrate the wear and tear of the vehicle in question, the production process is not subject to as high levels of interruption without the technology. By monitoring systems ‘as live’, breakdowns can be avoided prior to them happening.

It’s no longer a technological fantasy. Due to data in cars being collected for decades, researchers and manufacturers can gather insights that could be used to prepare predictive analytics. This will assist in predicting which individual cars will break down and need maintenance.

Now that the Internet of Things (IoT) is a reality, car manufacturers can use this information to offer timely and relevant additional customer services based on sophisticated software that can truly interrogate, interpret and use data. So who is going to be responsible for taking advantage of this technology?

Bolts and screws

Key management figures in the transport industry must commit to a maintenance management approach to implement a long-term technological solution. As described by R.Mobley, run-to-failure management sees an organisation refrain from spending money in advance, only reacting to machine or system failure. This reactive method may result in high overtime labour costs, high machine downtime and low productivity.

Similarly reactive, preventive maintenance monitors the mean-time-to-failure (MTTF), based on the principle that new equipment will be at its most vulnerable during the first few weeks of operation, as well as the longer it is used for. This can manifest itself in various guises, such as engine lubrication or major structural adjustments. However, predicting the time frame in which a machine will need to be reconditioned may be unnecessary and costly.

As an alternative option, predictive maintenance allows proactivity, ensuring lengthier time between scheduled repairs, whilst reducing the significant amount of crises that will have to be addressed due to mechanical faults. With a cognitive predictive model, meaning applications are able to teach themselves as they function, organisations will be able to foresee exactly why and when a machine will break down, allowing them to act […]

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Shipments of cellular M2M terminals to reach 13.7 million by 2022, says Berg Insight

By Zenobia Hegde

Berg Insight, the M2M/IoT market research provider, released new findings about the market for cellular M2M terminals. About 4.9 million cellular M2M terminals were shipped globally during 2016, an increase of 28.0% from the previous year.

Growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.8%, this number is expected to reach 13.7 million in 2022. Berg Insight defines cellular terminals as standalone devices intended for connecting M2M applications to a cellular network. These include primarily general-purpose cellular routers, gateways and modems that are enclosed in a chassis and have at least one input/output port. Trackers, telematics devices and other specialised devices are excluded from this report.

North American and Asian vendors dominate the global cellular M2M terminal market. Cradlepoint, Sierra Wireless and Digi International are the largest vendors in North America, whilst SIMCom is the main manufacturer on the Asian market. Combined, these four vendors generated close to US$ 415 million (€349.15 million) in revenues from M2M terminal sales during 2016. This is equivalent to nearly 50% of the global market.

Other noteworthy vendors include CalAmp, Multitech Systems and Encore Networks in the US, Xiamen Four-Faith, Maestro Wireless and InHand Networks in Asia, Teltonika, HMS Networks, Advantech B+B SmartWorx, NetModule, Matrix Electrónica, Eurotech, Gemalto, Dr. Neuhaus and Option in Europe and NetComm Wireless in Australia.

A large number of small and medium sized vendors are active on the European market, whilst the North American market is dominated by a handful of major vendors, largely due to barriers in the form of carrier certifications required for cellular devices in the region.

“Adoption of 4G LTE in cellular routers, gateways and modems have increased rapidly in recent time due to increased focus on product life cycle costs and decommissioning of 2G networks”, said Fredrik Stålbrand, IoT analyst, Berg Insight. He adds that two thirds of the cellular M2M terminals sold globally during 2017 used 4G LTE as the main standard.

“LPWA technologies such as LTE Cat M1 and NB-IoT are expected to ease the transition from 2G to LTE networks further”, continued Mr. Stålbrand. In 2017, introductions of cellular M2M terminals featuring LTE Cat M1 and NB-IoT technologies were made by Encore Networks, Maestro Wireless and MultiTech Systems and several vendors plan to launch new products with LPWA connectivity during 2018.

Download report brochure here.

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Cloud Competition Intensifies – Rapid Growth Ahead for Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform

By A.R. Guess

by Angela Guess According to a recent press release, “A new LogicMonitor® survey of nearly 300 industry influencers predicts that enterprises will migrate the majority of their IT workloads from the data center to the cloud by 2020. Fueling this transition will be the 20.8 billion IoT devices Gartner predicts will come online, and the […]

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Europe and North America will reach 65.2m active insurance telematics policies in 2021, Berg forecasts

By Zenobia Hegde

According to a new research report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight, the number of insurance telematics policies in force on the European market reached 6.8 million in Q4-2016. Growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 34.8%, this number is expected to reach 30.0 million by 2021. In North America, the number of insurance telematics policies in force is expected to grow at a CAGR of 38.2% from 6.9 million in Q4-2016 to reach 35.2 million in 2021.

The European insurance telematics market is largely dominated by hardwired aftermarket black boxes while self-install OBD devices represent the vast majority of the active policies in North America. Several major US insurers have however recently shifted to solutions based on smartphones. Berg Insight expects a rapid increase in the uptake of smartphone-based solutions in all markets in the upcoming years.

“The US, Italy, the UK and Canada are still the largest markets in terms of insurance telematics policies”, said Martin Svegander, M2M/IoT analyst at Berg Insight. In North America, the market is dominated by US-based Progressive, Allstate, Liberty Mutual and State Farm as well as Intact Financial Corporation and Desjardins in Canada.

The Italian insurers UnipolSai and Generali together accounted for around 50% of the telematics-enabled policies in Europe. Insurers with a strong adoption of telematics-enabled policies in the UK moreover include Admiral Group, Insure The Box and Direct Line. Several insurers in the rest of Europe have also shown a substantial uptake of telematics in 2016–2017.

“Insurers are increasingly expected to embrace every aspect of telematics to reduce the cost of claims, improve the underwriting process and add services to increase the customer value through differentiated telematics offerings”, continued Mr. Svegander.

He added that several attempts to reduce distracted driving and increase consumer engagement using smartphone-based insurance telematics have been seen in both Europe and North America. “Consumer engagement is now the focus for most insurance telematics programmes and will continue to be an important topic in the near term”, concluded Svegander.

The insurance telematics value chain spans multiple industries including a large ecosystem of companies extending far beyond the insurance industry players. Automotive OEMs are showing an increasing interest in insurance telematics. Examples include General Motors, Ford, BMW, Daimler, PSA Group and Fiat. The vehicle manufacturers are expected to drive the long-term development of insurance telematics by offering the possibility to utilise connected car OEM data in pay-how-you-drive offers.

Notable aftermarket telematics service providers with a focus on insurance telematics include Octo Telematics with over 5.3 million active devices in Q4-2017 and other end-to-end solution providers such as Vodafone Automotive and Viasat Group. LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Intelligent Mechatronic Systems, Cambridge Mobile Telematics, Modus, The Floow, Scope Technologies and TrueMotion are also important players on the insurance telematics market.

Download the report brochure here: Insurance Telematics in Europe and North America.

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Face authentication and the future of security

By Zenobia Hegde

Apple’s iPhone X has given us a glimpse into the future of personal data security. By 2020 we’ll see billions of smart devices being used as mobile face authentication systems, albeit with varying degrees of security. The stuff of science fiction for years, face recognition will surpass other legacy biometric login solutions,such as fingerprint and iris scans, because of a new generation of AI-driven algorithms, says Kevin Alan Tussy, CEO of FaceTec.

The face recognition space had never received more attention than after the launch of Face ID, but with the internet now home to dozens of spoof videos fooling Face ID with twins, relatives and even olives for eyes, the expensive hardware solution has left many questioning if this is just another missed opportunity to replace passwords.

Face Recognition is a biometric method of identifying an authorised user by comparing the user’s face to the biometric data stored in the original enrolment. Once a positive match is made and the user’s liveness is confirmed the system grants account access.

A step up in security, Face Authentication (Identification + Liveness Detection), offers important and distinct security benefits: no PIN or password memorisation is required, there is no shared secret that can be stolen from a server, and the certainty the correct user is logging in is very high.

Apple’s embrace of Face ID has elevated face recognition into the public consciousness, and when compared to mobile fingerprint recognition, face recognition is far superior in terms of accuracy. According to Apple, their new face scanning technology is 20-times more secure than the fingerprint recognition currently used in the iPhone 8 (Touch ID) and Samsung S8. Using your face to unlock your phone is, of course, a great step forward, but is that all a face biometric can do? Not by a long shot.

While the goal of every new biometric has been to replace passwords, none have succeeded because most rely on special hardware that lacks liveness detection. Liveness detection, the key attribute of Authentication, verifies the correct user is actually present and alive at the time of login.

True 3D face authentication requires: identity verification plus depth sensing plus liveness detection. This means photos or videos cannot spoof the system, nor animated images like those created by CrazyTalk; and even 3D representations of a user like projections on foam heads, custom masks, and wax figures are rebuffed.

With the average price of a smartphone hovering around £150 (€170.58), expensive hardware-based solutions, no matter how good they get, won’t ever see widespread adoption. For a face authentication solution to be universally adopted it must be a 100% software solution that runs on the billions of devices with standard cameras that are already in use, and it must be be more secure than current legacy options (like fingerprint and 2D face).

A software solution like ZoOm from FaceTec can be quickly and easily integrated into nearly any app on just about any existing smart device. ZoOm can be deployed to millions of mobile users literally overnight, and provides […]

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