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Are we enter the era of Wearables-as-a-Service?

By Zenobia Hegde

At this week’s CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas Omate will unveil its Wearable-as-a-Service (WaaS) exclusive partnership with Medical Guardian designed to protect senior citizens in North America.

Omate announces new Wearable-as-a-Service solution to protect lone workers.

The new, next generation Omate 4G O5LW smartwatch is powered by Arkea on Life secure location-based services.

This can be seen at Booth 43855 in the Health & Wellness Marketplace. Demo will be available later at ShowStoppers at Wynn Hotel Las Vegas, in the Lafite Ballroom on Tuesday January 9, 2018 from 6.00 to 10.00p.m.

On Sunday Omate announced its newest 4G enabled smartwatch, the Omate O5LW – wearable platform powered by Arkea on Life.

Introducing the O5LW

“We are excited to work with Arkea On Life to offer consumers the opportunity to protect their family through the most secure platform to date. Using Arkea insurance and banking background, guarantees the safety of the data of the end users.

This relationship opens up possibilities for new Wearable-as-a-Services for enterprise segments through Arkea On Life services such as lone workers in the security, public utilities, transportation and many other industries,” says Laurent Le Pen, founder & CEO at Omate.

The O5LW is a low power 4G always-on standalone wearable and GPS tracker packaged in a robust IP67 case and is ideal for companies looking for connected services tailored to their industries.

WaaS: Wearable-as-a-Service

Omate has strategically invested in IoT for smart connected wearables to offer tailored services to companies evolving in the kids, elderly and enterprise segments. Modules powered by Omate are used in wearable devices for people who need protection from kids to seniors to lone workers

Yvon Le Bihan

“We are delighted that Omate selected Arkea On Life services for its next generation platform,” said Yvon Le Bihan, CEO at Arkea On Life. “Our services are designed to meet the needs of tomorrow’s wearable devices for both consumer and enterprise segments.”

Always-on connectivity for tailored services

The Omate O5LW powered wearable is designed to deliver an always connected experience with the latest 4G modem, integrated GPS, low power Wi-Fi® and Bluetooth®.

The O5LW can last up to three days on a single charge and triangulates location using GPS, 4G cellular networks and Wi-Fi hotspots, for a more accurate positioning.

The O5LW will be available from June 2018 exclusively through Arkea On Life; associated services will be accessible through several mobile network operators and insurance companies starting Q3 2018.

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Loyalty or lock-in? Most smart speaker users won’t budge from Amazon or Google

By Zenobia Hegde

More than two thirds of current owners of Amazon Echo and Google Home smart speakers are planning to buy another smart speaker within the next six months, according to the latest research from Strategy Analytics.

The report, Smart Speaker User Survey: Brand Awareness and Ownership, also found that 75% of Amazon smart speaker owners would choose another Amazon speaker, and 69% of Google owners would choose another Google product. The report concludes that “this may simply suggest high levels of satisfaction, or a recognition that the technical platforms are different and that switching would involve unwanted complexity”.

Other key findings from the research include:

24% of respondents already own at least one smart speaker
Amazon and Google account for 94% of all smart speakers in use
More than a quarter of all respondents intend to buy a smart speaker in the next 6 months

“The early runners in the fast-growing smart speaker market look set to dominate for some time,” says David Mercer, principal analyst and the report’s author. “High customer satisfaction levels and the possibility of platform ‘lock-in’ will make it challenging for competitor platforms to carve out significant market share in the near term.”

“At this early stage it appears that Amazon and Google are successfully meeting customer needs, in spite of adopting contrasting strategies,” comments David Watkins, director of Strategy Analytics’ Smart Speakers service. “This is good and bad news for competitors: it will be tough to dislodge Amazon and Google; but new approaches to smart speaker design and user experience can help win over new customers.”

Strategy Analytics will be attending CES in Las Vegas January 9-12 where analysts will be available to discuss the company’s smart speaker research in more detail.

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One small step for 5G, one giant step for wireless

By Zenobia Hegde

Today marks a momentous milestone for the wireless industry: the finalisation of the 3GPP Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) Standard. The formalisation of the NSA standard anchors the coming Standalone (SA) version and represents a remarkable step forward for the industry.

With NSA 5G NR, players across the ecosystem for the first time have rallied around a single internationally recognised specification for 5G radio systems. It provides the technological foundation for the industry to begin testing and commercialising the next generation of wireless services and devices, says Asha Keddy of Intel.

I’d like to congratulate the parties that contributed to the development of this standard, setting the foundation for an interoperable global marketplace ripe with economic opportunity and technological possibility. As I commented in the related news release, Intel participated in the process, working closely with mobile industry leaders to support the standard and accelerate the first NR trials.

Many of the early use cases will fall into the realms of enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), the Internet of Things (IoT), as well as Vehicle-to-Everything Communications (V2X). Intel has already been innovating in many of these segments, conducting field trials with the Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform (MTP) and the Intel GO 5G Automotive Platform. To prepare for the specification finalisation, we have to be two to three years ahead of the standards when it comes to gathering key learnings about use cases and their related performance requirements.

Intel is proud to have contributed to the development of NSA 5G NR with proprietary research, reference designs and insights from a range of trials. Intel’s many contributions spanned the specification, including coding, error correction, modulation, spatial sub-channelisation, beamforming, reference symbol designs, radio link adaptation and more. Intel also produced prototypes for use in the testing of pre-5G standards, including 5GTF.

Those system stacks were, in essence, the parents of NSA and SA 5G NR – providing evidence of what was possible and informing the standard’s specifications. During this process, we collaborated with industry innovators like Ericsson and Nokia, and leading operators like AT&T, Korea Telecom, NTT Docomo and Verizon.

We’ve rapidly evolved our MTP in lockstep with progress of the NR specification, preparing it for the finalisation of the standard. It’s NSA 5G NR-ready, giving equipment manufacturers the platform they need to test interoperability and operators the ability to simulate real-world use cases. Powered by high-performance Intel FPGAs and Intel® Core™ processors, the MTP will have a key role in informing the pending SA standard within Release 15 in June 2018.

We already have several NSA 5G NR trials lined up using the MTP alongside our 5G RFIC supporting sub-6 GHz and mmWave, and our 5G RFFE for operations in the 28 GHz and 39 GHz bands. The learnings from our interoperability testing and real-world trials are foundational for our first commercial NSA/SA 5G NR-capable multimode solutions, the Intel® XMM™ 8000 series modem, with customer devices expected in 2019. These solutions will support a variety of use cases, including PCs, mobile phones, fixed wireless CPE and even vehicles.

Of course, it’s important to remember that as momentous as this occasion is, it’s really just […]

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Thai start-up ‘DRVR’ partners with Tata Communications to revolutionise Asia’s smart fleet network

By Zenobia Hegde

International fleet management application provider, DRVR has selected Tata Communications as its global IoT connectivity partner to help achieve its objective of making Asia’s vehicle fleets the smartest and most cost-efficient in the world.

Leveraging Tata Communications’ mobility solution- MOVE™, DRVR can convert information collected from vehicles across Thailand, Myanmar, Philippines and Indonesia into actionable insights to help drive efficiencies and improve cost savings through smarter fleet management.

The advent of connected vehicles has led to an exponential increase in consumption and creation of human to machine interface applications and solutions. A Forrester report on the Internet of Things states that fleet management and its applications in transportation and logistics across retail and wholesale will be the hottest areas for IoT growth. The Asia Pacific automotive telematics market is expected to reach a value of US$ 15,248 million by 2020 at an estimated CAGR of 11.6% during the forecast period.

Vehicles in fleets using DRVR technology have been fitted with Tata Communications’ MOVE-IOT Connect™ SIM technology. The sensors transmit data collected in real-time using Tata Communications’ MOVE, which seamlessly connects services using the best available local cellular network. The DRVR application then processes and analyses this data, turning it into actionable intelligence further illustrating fleet performance metrics on any device, mobile or laptop.

This means that faster and better informed decisions can be made as fleet managers have a more holistic view of everything that is happening across the fleet, communicating updates in real time; on a highly secure infrastructure ultimately leading to more effective and robust operations on the ground.

David Henderson, co-founder and CEO, DRVR said: “Our partnership with Tata Communications enables us to overcome two major challenges in our quest to create smarter fleets across our entire geographical footprint. First, rather than negotiate multiple contracts with individual service providers, our entire international IoT network is managed through Tata Communications.

As a result, we get valuable visibility of data collected across borders so that we can realise the benefits of smarter fleet management. Second, it allows us a holistic view on a singular dashboard allowing us to respond with improved accuracy and eliminating downtime almost entirely.”

Tata Communications’ MOVE service will be rolled out to DRVR customers through its smart fleet management applications. Tata Communications MOVE is part of the company’s long-term strategy for its mobility services portfolio and its vision of creating an access and usage agnostic, cross-border mobile experience for people and things.

The platform is underpinned by Tata Communications’ global network and partnerships with several hundred mobile communications service providers globally. The service enables DRVR to roam across different service providers in any of its covered regions without having to negotiate agreements with multiple providers or pay extra fees.

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BOE Put into Production the World’s First G10.5 TFT-LCD Line Creating New Milestone in Global Display Industry

By IoT – Internet of Things

Recently, the global highest generation line, BOE Gen 10.5 TFT-LCD production line, has put into production ahead of schedule in Hefei. It hasn’t been long after the mass production of China’s first BOE Chengdu Gen 6 flexible AMOLED production line, marking another new milestone in the global display industry. Not only does this mean that […]

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