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22 Jan, 2018

Episode 3 - Weekly IoT News Update

Emma Fenton-WellsEmma Fenton-Wells

AI’s beating humans at comprehension tests, unusual applications of IoT tech, and chips that connect IoT and blockchain – there’s a lot to talk about in our weekly IoT news update:

Filament announce chip that enables industrial IoT devices communicate with blockchain

Filament, a Reno, Nevada based startup claims that its Blocklet chip will enable a container to "engage in secure microtransactions: selling data about its location and cargo, negotiating connectivity to communicate with its owner, signing off on delivery to its final destination, perhaps someday even clearing customs.” Filament was founded in 2012 and its initial business model revolved around the common IoT applications such as developing sensor packages. 

Renfrewshire tackles fuel poverty with IoT technology

An IoT initiative underway in Renfrewishire is helping to tackle fuel poverty in social housing and could save local authorities millions of pounds on property management and repair bills. Working with Renfrewshire council, smart asset management company iOpt Assets has been detecting temperature, humidity and carbon dioxide levels at 50 social homes around Paisley over the course of the project. the pilot scheme, which has been running since 2016 is monitoring a range of property types including high rises, cottages and terraced houses.   

AT&T and Arrow Electronics to collaborate in IoT drive

Arrow will work with the telco at its AT&T Internet of Things (IoT) Foundry located in Plano, Texas, to help companies innovate with connected IoT solutions. The facility serves as a collaborative workspace and incubation facility for smart devices and their makers. As part of the Foundry experience, Arrow will use its full suite of ‘sensor-to-sunset’ technology solutions, including on-site engineering and production resources, to help customers get their products to market quickly. 

Machines just beat humans on a Stanford reading comprehension test

Chinese retail giant Alibaba has developed an artificial intelligence model that's managed to outdo human participants in a reading and comprehension test designed by Stanford University. Alibaba claims that its accomplishment is the first time that humans have been outmatched on this particular test, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Companies will spend $3.7 trillion on IT in 2018, led by trendy new tech like blockchain, IoT and AI

The IT industry is expected to be a $3.7 trillion market in 2018, according to market research firm Gartner. Businesses plan to increase spending in all areas including enterprise software, devices (PCs, tablets, phones), IT services, and communications services (telcom, networking). Companies even plan to increase spending on their data centers in 2018, although that's the area slated for the least amount of growth as companies continue to shift towards cloud computing where they rent infrastructure tech from others, paying only for what they use. 

IBM, shipping giant Maersk partner on blockchain into secure international trade

IBM and Maersk announced a new joint company to create a more efficient and secure process for conducting global trade by leveraging blockchain technology. The move comes just as hype around blockchain and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have reached a peak. The new global trade from IBM and Maersk could provide more transparency and simplicity to the global shipping process. 

Renault, Nissan, Mitsubishi alliance to invest in automotive technologies

In the automotive technologies sector, Renault, Nissan, Mitsubishi Alliance Ventures launched a new corporate venture capital fund, planned to invest up to $1 billion to support open innovation over the next five years, co-located in Tel Aviv, Silicon Valley, Paris, Yokohama and Beijing. In its first year, the fund expects to invest up to $200 million in start-ups and open innovation partnerships with technology entrepreneurs focused on new mobility, including vehicle electrification, autonomous systems, connectivity and artificial intelligence. 

PTT seeks digital advantage

PTT Digital Solutions is exploring strategic technologies as it prepares to spin off innovative start-ups by 2020. The company is teaming up with Rise, the regional corporate innovation accelerator to lure Asean start-ups and encourage innovation. These digital solutions are predicted to enable the company to diversify its revenue sources. 

Ministry of Education announces first of its kind Industrial Revolution X programme

The programme is designed to equip UAE nationals with the knowledge, skills and hands-on expertise required to keep apace with modern technologies and scientific advancements occurring globally. The vision of the programme is for it to evolve with time and adapt its content to gear UAE nationals for upcoming industrial revolutions, hence the ‘X’ in the name, which represents the future eras. 

Facebook invests in French centre for artificial intelligence

Facebook has committed itself to invest €10 million in its French artificial intelligence centre in the latest sign of optimism in the country's tech sector following Emmanuel Macron's election last year. The US social media giant said the five-year investment would be used to double the number of AI scientists at its research base in Paris to 60 and increase its funding of PhD candidates from 10 to 40. It will also donate money to the French government’s Open Data Initiative to share information with the public.

Orcale opens first innovation hub with focus on AI

Oracle opened its first innovation hub in the region on Sunday in a bid to cash in on the growing implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions in the UAE. They named the new facility the ‘Zayed Innovation Hub’ and it was inaugurated by Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence

Buildings should behave like humans

Artificial intelligence, along with real-time IoT, must be incorporated into buildings to make them smarter and healthier, says major construction firm, Site 1001. One must be able to walk into a room, including those in data centers, and not only access information about every facet of it, but also importantly, have it automatically solve all of its problems on its own.

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