Fredric Paul

Author Archives: Fredric Paul

The Traffic Jam Whopper project may be the coolest/dumbest IoT idea ever

People love to eat in their cars. That’s why we invented the drive-in and the drive-thru.But despite a fast-food outlet on the corner of every major intersection, it turns out we were only scratching the surface of this idea. Burger King is taking this concept to the next logical step with its new IoT-powered Traffic Jam Whopper project.I have to admit, when I first heard about this, I thought it was a joke, but apparently the Traffic Jam Whopper project is totally real and has already passed a month-long test in Mexico City. While the company hasn’t specified a timeline, it plans to roll out the Traffic Jam Whopper project in Los Angeles (where else?) and other traffic-plagued megacities such as São Paulo and Shanghai.To read this article in full, please click here

Enterprise IoT: Companies want solutions in these 4 areas

Internet of things (IoT) vendors and pundits like to crow about the billions and billions of connected devices that make the IoT so ubiquitous and powerful. But how much of that installed base is really relevant to the enterprise?To find out, I traded emails with Rob Mesirow, principal at PwC’s Connected Solutions, the firm’s new one-stop-shop of IoT solutions, who suggests that consumer adoption may not paint a true picture of the enterprise opportunities. If you remove the health trackers and the smart thermostats from the market, he suggested, there are very few connected devices left.To read this article in full, please click here

The state of enterprise IoT: Companies want solutions for these 4 areas

Internet of things (IoT) vendors and pundits like to crow about the billions and billions of connected devices that make the IoT so ubiquitous and powerful. But how much of that installed base is really relevant to the enterprise?To find out, I traded emails with Rob Mesirow, principal at PwC’s Connected Solutions, the firm’s new one-stop-shop of IoT solutions, who suggests that consumer adoption may not paint a true picture of the enterprise opportunities. If you remove the health trackers and the smart thermostats from the market, he suggested, there are very few connected devices left.To read this article in full, please click here

When IoT systems fail: The risk of having bad IoT data

No matter what numbers you look at, it’s clear that the internet of things (IoT) continues to worm its way into more and more areas of personal and private life. That growth brings many benefits, but it also poses new risks. A big question is who takes responsibility when things go wrong.Perhaps the biggest issue surrounds the use of IoT-generated data to personalize the offering and pricing of various products and services. Insurance companies have long struggled with how best to use IoT data, but last year I wrote about how IoT sensors are beginning to be used to help home insurers reduce water damage losses. And some companies are looking into the potential for insurers to bid for consumers: business based on the risks (or lack thereof) revealed by their smart-home data.To read this article in full, please click here

Yet another killer cloud quarter puts pressure on data centers

You’d almost think I’d get tired of writing this story over and over and over… but the ongoing growth of cloud computing is too big a trend to ignore.Critically, the impressive growth numbers of the three leading cloud infrastructure providers—Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform—doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It’s not just about new workloads being run in the cloud; it’s also about more and more enterprises moving existing workloads to the cloud from on-premises data centers.To read this article in full, please click here

Yet another killer cloud quarter puts pressure on data centers

You’d almost think I’d get tired of writing this story over and over and over… but the ongoing growth of cloud computing is too big a trend to ignore.Critically, the impressive growth numbers of the three leading cloud infrastructure providers—Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform—doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It’s not just about new workloads being run in the cloud; it’s also about more and more enterprises moving existing workloads to the cloud from on-premises data centers.To read this article in full, please click here

No, drone delivery still isn’t ready for prime time

April has a been a big month for drone delivery. First, Alphabet’s Wing Aviation drones got approval from Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), for public deliveries in the country, and this week Wing earned Air Carrier Certification from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. These two regulatory wins got lot of people got very excited. Finally, the conventional wisdom exulted, drone delivery is actually becoming a reality.To read this article in full, please click here

Want to the know future of IoT? Ask the developers!

It may be a cliché that software developers rule the world, but if you want to know the future of an important technology, it pays to look at what the developers are doing. With that in mind, there are some real, on-the-ground insights for the entire internet of things (IoT) community to be gained in a new survey of more than 1,700 IoT developers (pdf) conducted by the Eclipse Foundation.IoT connectivity concerns Perhaps not surprisingly, security topped the list of concerns, easily outpacing other IoT worries. But that's where things begin to get interesting. More than a fifth (21%) of IoT developers cited connectivity as a challenge, followed by data collection and analysis (19%), performance (18%), privacy (18%), and standards (16%).To read this article in full, please click here

The Microsoft/BMW IoT Open Manufacturing Platform might not be so open

Last week at Hannover Messe, Microsoft and German carmaker BMW announced a partnership to build a hardware and software technology framework and reference architecture for the industrial internet of things (IoT), and foster a community to spread these smart-factory solutions across the automotive and manufacturing industries.The stated goal of the Open Manufacturing Platform (OMP)? According to the press release, it's “to drive open industrial IoT development and help grow a community to build future Industry 4.0 solutions.” To make that a reality, the companies said that by the end of 2019, they plan to attract four to six partners — including manufacturers and suppliers from both inside and outside the automotive industry — and to have rolled out at least 15 use cases operating in actual production environments.To read this article in full, please click here

Elizabeth Warren’s right-to-repair plan fails to consider data from IoT equipment

There’s a surprising battle being fought on America’s farms, between farmers and the companies that sell them tractors, combines, and other farm equipment. Surprisingly, the outcome of that war could have far-reaching implications for the internet of things (IoT) — and now Massachusetts senator and Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has weighed in with a proposal that could shift the balance of power in this largely under-the-radar struggle.Right to repair farm equipment Here’s the story: As part of a new plan to support family farms, Warren came out in support of a national right-to-repair law for farm equipment. That might not sound like a big deal, but it raises the stakes in a long-simmering fight between farmers and equipment makers over who really controls access to the equipment — and to the increasingly critical data gathered by the IoT capabilities built into it.To read this article in full, please click here

Elizabeth Warren’s Right to Repair plan fails to consider data from IoT equipment

There’s a surprising battle being fought on America’s farms, between farmers and the companies that sell them tractors, combines, and other farm equipment. Surprisingly, the outcome of that war could have far-reaching implications for the internet of things (IoT) — and now Massachusetts senator and Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has weighed in with a proposal that could shift the balance of power in this largely under-the-radar struggle.Right to repair farm equipment Here’s the story: As part of a new plan to support family farms, Warren came out in support of a national right-to-repair law for farm equipment. That might not sound like a big deal, but it raises the stakes in a long-simmering fight between farmers and equipment makers over who really controls access to the equipment — and to the increasingly critical data gathered by the IoT capabilities built into it.To read this article in full, please click here

An inside look at an IIoT-powered smart factory

As someone who’s spent his whole career working in offices, not factories, I had very little idea what a modern “smart factory” powered by the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) might look like. That’s why I was so interested in Tempo Automation’s new 42,000-square-foot facility in San Francisco’s trendy Design District.Frankly, I pictured the company’s facility, which uses IIoT to automatically configure, operate, and monitor the prototyping and low-volume production of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs), as a cacophony of robots and conveyor belts attended to by a grizzled band of grease-stained technicians. You know, a 21stcentury update of Charlie Chaplin’s 1936 classic Modern Times making equipment for customers in the aerospace, medtech, industrial automation, consumer electronics, and automotive industries. (The company just inked a new contract with Lockheed Martin.)To read this article in full, please click here

An inside look at Tempo Automation’s IIoT-powered ‘smart factory’

As someone who’s spent his whole career working in offices, not factories, I had very little idea what a modern “smart factory” powered by the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) might look like. That’s why I was so interested in Tempo Automation’s new 42,000-square-foot facility in San Francisco’s trendy Design District.Frankly, I pictured the company’s facility, which uses IIoT to automatically configure, operate, and monitor the prototyping and low-volume production of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs), as a cacophony of robots and conveyor belts attended to by a grizzled band of grease-stained technicians. You know, a 21stcentury update of Charlie Chaplin’s 1936 classic Modern Times making equipment for customers in the aerospace, medtech, industrial automation, consumer electronics, and automotive industries. (The company just inked a new contract with Lockheed Martin.)To read this article in full, please click here

3 companies developing wearable tech for the enterprise

Earlier this month, I wrote that “even as smartwatch shipments continue to grow, significant industrial and business use cases for these internet-connected devices have yet to appear.”And then a few days later, as if on cue, International Data Corporation (IDC) put out a press release about the latest edition of the Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker. The release quoted Ramon T. Llamas, research director for IDC's Wearables team, saying, "Two major drivers for the wearables market are healthcare and enterprise adoption.”To read this article in full, please click here

Wearable tech in the enterprise grows, but few workplace uses exist

Take a glance at the wrists of your co-workers, and you’re likely to see more and more of them adorned with smartwatches, fitness trackers, and other wearable technology. In meetings, you increasingly see colleagues surreptitiously glancing at their tiny screens, hoping in vain that no one is noticing.It isn’t just you. The latest smartwatch numbers all say that smartwatch shipments are growing fast, and the internet-connected devices are beginning to achieve mainstream acceptance: Last month, The NPD Group's new Smartwatch Total Market Report noted that smartwatch unit sales jumped 61 percent in 2018, while dollar volume rose 51 percent to approach $5 billion in sales. Some 16 percent of U.S. adults now own a smartwatch, the report said, up from 12 percent at the end of 2017.To read this article in full, please click here

Why the industrial IoT is more important than consumer devices — and 7 more surprising IoT trends

Given the Internet of Things’ (IoT) perch atop the hype cycle, IoT trend-spotting has become a full-time business, not just an end-of-the-year pastime. It seems every major — and minor — IoT player is busy laying out its vision of where the technology is going. Most of them harp on the same themes, of course, from massive growth to security vulnerabilities to skills shortages.[ Also on Network World: Six IoT predictions for 2019 ] Those are all real concerns, but Chris Nelson, vice president of engineering at operational intelligence (OT) vendor OSIsoft, shared some more unique viewpoints via email. In addition to his contention that the IoT will blur the lines between IT, which runs the customers’ systems and email, and OT, which runs the technology behind the production systems, he talked about what will drive the IoT in the next year.To read this article in full, please click here

The big picture: Is IoT in the enterprise about making money or saving money?

Everyone knows the Internet of Things (IoT) is a transformative technology for consumers, vendors, and enterprises that’s in the process of becoming a historically huge market—measured in trillions, not billions, of dollars. That’s great, and most likely true, but perhaps a little vague in some respects. For example: What, exactly, do enterprises hope to gain from their investments in the IoT? Are they planning to use the IoT to save money on things they’re already doing, or do they see the technology as a way to create new businesses and boost revenue?To read this article in full, please click here

Why predictive maintenance hasn’t taken off as expected

“Two years ago, predictive maintenance was forecast to be one of the most promising uses of the industrial Internet of Things (IoT).”That’s the lead of report based on a recent Bain & Company survey of more than 600 high-tech executives (Beyond Proofs of Concept: Scaling the Industrial IoT, by Bain partners Michael Schallehn, Christopher Schorling, Peter Bowen and Oliver Straehle). The report goes on to note that identifying precisely when equipment might fail “seemed like a no-brainer.” And yet, the report concludes, “predictive maintenance has failed to take off as broadly as expected.” In fact, industrial leaders were not as excited about predictive maintenance as they were back in a 2016 survey.To read this article in full, please click here

Why predictive maintenance hasn’t taken off as expected

“Two years ago, predictive maintenance was forecast to be one of the most promising uses of the industrial Internet of Things (IoT).”That’s the lead of report based on a recent Bain & Company survey of more than 600 high-tech executives (Beyond Proofs of Concept: Scaling the Industrial IoT, by Bain partners Michael Schallehn, Christopher Schorling, Peter Bowen and Oliver Straehle). The report goes on to note that identifying precisely when equipment might fail “seemed like a no-brainer.” And yet, the report concludes, “predictive maintenance has failed to take off as broadly as expected.” In fact, industrial leaders were not as excited about predictive maintenance as they were back in a 2016 survey.To read this article in full, please click here

Why are IoT platforms so darn confusing?

Lots of vendors are eager to sell enterprises an “IoT platform,” but it’s not always clear exactly what those “platforms” actually do, why you need one, and which one you should choose. As Hackernoon put it in April 2018: "We’re a cross-functional, fully integrated, full-stack, serverless, hardware agnostic, AI, IoT platform that offers you infinite infrastructure . . .“ said every confusing IoT platform website ever.To read this article in full, please click here

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