Tag Archives: Technology

Combating Unwarranted Phone Surveillance with Biometrics and Voice Control

1 Mar

Amidst the introduction of a new mobile tracking bill, targeting the existence of warrants— there has been a sudden rise in the number of frightened consumers. Most handset owners are dealing with skepticism, concerning lack of mobile security and other malicious activities.

In this post, we will be talking about the possible security loopholes in the existing arena in addition to certain methodologies or rather technologies for combating the same. Before we move any further into this post, it is fitting enough to understand how phone surveillance works, regardless of the legalities associated with the same.

Decoding Mobile Tracking

Phone Surveillance

In simpler terms, mobile tracking is an undesirable act of sabotaging someone’s privacy. While many government organizations have already resorted to these methods for averting security threats, more often than not phone surveillance is an unwarranted and unauthorized affair— leading to catastrophic outcomes.

Existent of Consumer Spyware

When it comes to malware targeting mobile tracking, consumer spyware is the latest fad. This is one of the most effective techniques— used by fraudulent organizations for getting inside the handset of any user. Usually, this form of malware comes as a mobile application or a separate, downloadable entity. Once allowed access, the spyware easy takes control of images, data, phone log and everything that’s inside the device.

The worst part about consumer spyware is that it can be installed within a few seconds and starts working in the background. While physical access to the handset is required, a skilled hacker can easily install the bug without the owner even noticing the instantaneous sabotage. That said, malicious applications can also embed the spyware with minimal hassles.

Lastly, consumer spyware can even access the phone audio and microphone, allowing hackers gain complete access to every word spoken.

This form of malware is mostly used by firms with nefarious intentions who look to sell over the acquired details to other parties for financial perks.

‘Stingrays’

stingrays and Phone Surveillance

While malicious applications and malware can be detected by being vigilant, there are certain newly devised techniques which are nearly impossible to identify. Stingrays are the newest techniques used by hackers for getting unwarranted access to any mobile. These entities sit on the mobile towers or act as authorized establishments— luring users into addressing them as legit ones. Mobile users, unknowingly, send data via these towers and allow malicious sources right into the device.

Safeguarding Handsets with Biometrics

Biometrics are some of the more desirable techniques, targeting mobile safety and privacy. While the existing solutions are great, we are expecting a more granular approach towards secured devices. The concept of biometric protection has already been taken seriously by several authorities— across the globe— integrated with global bank statements and other confidential documents. Some of the developing nations have also identified the importance of biometric solutions— integrating the likes of national cards and associated details with the respective handsets.

However, the amalgamation of identity card biometrics with mobile solutions need to be country-specific as different nations have different rules regarding their ID segregations. We have country-specific biometric-spruced ID proofs for the developed and even developing nations— biding the likes of retina scans, fingerprints and even digital signage with the smartphones.

biometrics and Phone Surveillance

This is a more granular approach towards biometric solutions and is expected to curb the inadvertent growth of unwarranted phone surveillance.

Certain AI empowered smartphones are also being considered for amalgamating biometrics with voice and other kinds of authentication schemes.

Combating Fraud with Voice Control

Although getting access to the phone mic isn’t as hard as it seems, consumer spyware can still be kept at bay via authorized voice control. While accessing any electronic device via voice seems to be a far-fetched idea, it seems scientists have already established certain measures leading to the same.

Quite recently, scientists have developed a low-cost chip which could change the way we handle our electronic gadgets— especially the mobiles.

Closing in on the chip, it is a great tool for automatic voice recognition— featuring a low-power console, courtesy the adaptable form factor. If used in a cellphone, the existing chip requires a mere 1W to get activated. Moreover, the usage pattern actually determines the amount of power needed to keep the chip activated.

When it comes to safety, the existing chip can sit on any given cellphone and prevent unauthorized access. This feature is one aspect of looking at Internet of Things for mobiles— instrumental in safeguarding the same from unwarranted surveillance.

The reason why we are upbeat for voice recognition as a pillar of safety is that speech input, in years to come, is expected to be a natural interface for more intelligent devices— making hacking a less-visited arena.

In the upcoming years, voice recognition chips are expected to make use of neural architecture and other aspects of human intelligence— making safety an obvious concept and not a selective one. However, power consumption remains to be one of the major limitations. At present one chip works on a single neural node of a given network— passing 32 increments of 10-milliseconds each.

Bottom-Line

Unethical tracking isn’t going to stop with the introduction of voice recognition techniques and biometrics. However, perfect application of the same seems to have lowered down the instances and we can just be hopeful of a more transparent future. There has been a lot of work going on in the field of speech recognition for every smartphone and we might soon see a pathbreaking innovation in the concerned field.

That said, biometrics have found their way into our lives, documents and even smartphones and their usage has also skyrocketed. There were times when users hardly made use of a fingerprint scanner but the current scenario suggests that iPhone’s Touch ID is used at least 84 times a day— on an average. This shows users are slowly adopting technology as their weapon towards safety and privacy.

Source: http://fundesco.net/combating-unwarranted-phone-surveillance-with-biometrics-and-voice-control/

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Power-Grid Hacked? Where’s the IoT?

1 Apr

Writing about the IoT (Internet of Things), or what was once called M2M, is something that people want to read about, a lot. It’s only recently that people are really catching on that everything is going to be connected. So when an article appeared on the front page of the USA Today about the smart grid stating that it was open to hack certainly deserved a chuckle or two, especially from people who are IoT advocates. No offense to my colleagues at the USA Today, but this nationally syndicated newspaper chain was covering the topic as if the fact that vulnerabilities could threaten lives was a breaking news story.

Ironically, there are days people talk about the IoT as if is something brand spanking new. Today newspapers and the broadcast news eagerly espouse the virtues of connected devices because there are apps or gadgets for just about everything imaginable in the IoT. We are now seeing a consumer frenzy surrounding smartphones, fitness trackers, lights, toasters, automobiles, and even baby bottles being connected.

Many people are just beginning to understand the IoT is more than connecting a computer to the Internet, or surfing the Web or watching a YouTube video. To really understand the Internet of Things is to recognize it is more than the everyday consumers gadgets that are getting all the media play these days. Much like the USA Today was so eloquently trying to point out is that the power grid is under attack every day—and what the author stated so clearly—and at any moment, it would leave millions of people without power for days or weeks. And that’s not even the worst of what could happen. Most residents do not equate the average brownout they experience for a few hours to the blackout that could be on the horizon in their neighborhood.

But again most people don’t give the IoT much thought. It’s kind of like their cellphones. Most people don’t know how they work. Nor do they care. They only care they work when and where they need it. The same holds true about their connected gadgets. Most consumers really don’t give their connected gadgets much thought until they need them for tracking their fitness, or turning on their lights or thermostats, or for finding the closest fast food restaurant when traveling in their cars. However, as more and more consumers adopt and adapt to electronic devices as part of their everyday lifestyle, this will change their attitudes and perceptions forever and the excitement for connected devices will trickle over into the enterprise. It is already happening with smart cities, with parking meters, trash pickups, snow removal, first responders, and smart utility meters.

Perhaps that is why the USA Today story has some real significance now and enterprise companies are starting to move away from just talking about the IoT to figuring out ways to implement solutions and services.

Part of the problem with the grid today is that it was designed with OMS (outage-management systems) that were configured to be reactive to signals that indicated outages and managed restoration. However, going forward the IoT systems being designed are able to prevent outages and restore services. These services, as one analyst firm says, could lead to a very bright future for the smart-grid, and as a result, projections based on these services makes sense and are very tangible.

While enterprises are looking to adopt the IoT, there seems to be a blurring of the lines between actual growth and hyperbole in market estimates. Vendors want to make huge growth predictions—50 billion devices—which currently is the buzz of the industry. However, these enormous market amplifications have already proven they will undoubtedly stall growth.

Corporate America seeks growth forecasts that are meaningful and that help deliver solutions to improve bottomline results and shareholder value. Again, one network carrier’s conjecture boasting the number of connections could quadruple by 2020, reaching more than 5 billion, doesn’t mean anything if all of these devices and connections are going to be hacked and CEOs heads are on the chopping block.

The same carrier was even quoted as saying in order for the IoT to reach these prognostications, networks must be reliable, the data from all of these connected endpoints must be able to be stored reliably and securely, infrastructures must be secure, and there must be ways to achieve device management.

If all the stars are in alignment, there is no question the IoT is poised for growth. But, that means everyone has to focus on making security a top priority to fend off the bad guys and to consider the market unknowns that can slow or delay IoT development.

That’s why the formation of groups like the ITA (Illinois Technology Assn.), www.illinoistech.org, Internet of Things Council—a public/private partnership that aims to assure civic leadership in the Internet of Things can will help companies sort through the facts from the fiction to jumpstart their initiatives.

Thus, it’s no wonder the more the industry does its crystal ball gazing, we are doing a disservice to IoT’s true potential. Even Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairwoman Cheryl LaFleur was pretty poignant in her remarks when she was quoted in the USA Today article referring to the potential of an attack, “One is too many, so that’s why we have to pay attention. The threats continue to evolve and we have to continue to evolve as well.”

Makes you wonder if the industry is evolving or just continuing to bandy about forecasts with little or no regard for living up to market or shareholding expectations much like it has for the past 15 years. Regardless of what you believe in all of this, the IoT is changing our lives one way or the other and it will certainly have an even greater impact on each and every business. How and when, those are the billion dollar questions.

Source: http://connectedworld.com/power-grid-hacked-wheres-the-iot/

Telecommunications: Insights for 2015

11 Nov

Throughout the past few years, we’ve personally witnessed significant changes in the global telecoms marketplace. According to several studies, mobile technology and smart devices are expected to continue leading the way for the telecoms industry well into 2015, especially considering the fact that the number of mobile subscribers is estimated to outnumber the global population. What else can we expect for the future of global business telecommunications?

 

TEN TELECOMMUNICATION INSIGHTS FOR 2015

 

Guest Blog Image #1 – Rise of the Cloud: Usage of offsite data storage continues to climb and more businesses will gain internal space by stowing their information in the cloud. This will also increase global connectivity, efficiency, reliability and speed.

#2 – Same Thing, Different Place: Mobile icons are just as recognizable as numbers and letters nowadays, but you will start to see them in different locations. Smartphone apps are appearing in cars and on new wearable devices making them more mobile than ever before.

#3 – More Connectivity: Aside from the 550,000 miles of undersea cabling that connects the internet globally, the 4G networks will continue to be embraced by even more oversea countries. This will increase the number of “hot-spots” all over the world.

#4 – Traffic Forecasts: With more wireless connectivity will come more online traffic. Luckily, Wi-Fi speed has increased keeping pace with the releases of new mobile devices.

Guest Blog Image 2

#5 – Rise of the Machine to Machine (M2M): Along with our hand-held devices increasing their speed and connectivity, the machines are also keeping pace. Global M2M numbers in 2014 were estimated at 45 billion dollars and expected to reach almost 200 billion by 2020.

#6 – The Global Telecom Consumer in 2020: One example of the wireless, global customer in 2020, will be interaction with their “smart home” being more commonplace and connectable from almost anyplace on the planet. With the greater affordability of ICT (Information and Communications Technology) low-income families shouldn’t be left out in the cold.

#7 – The Exploding App Market: Another global communication technology set for record growth is the online App marketplace. The number of downloads in 2015 is expected to reach almost 180 million and continue to explode to over 260 million by 2017.

#8 – Communication Integration: Expect to see more integration with different forms of communication technologies such as VoIP and ISP. Much of this will be used to support the expanding BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) concept.

#9 – Big Data: This technological infrastructure is also set to expand exponentially in the next few years and have a positive impact on everything from cloud storage to the M2M market. For example, in 2013, executives in the US were most commonly using M2M to communicate more effectively with their customers.

#10 – Even Bigger Future Beyond 2015: While in 2013, there were 2.7 billion people were using the internet, by 2020 that number is forecasted to reach 24 billion.

We never know what the future truly has in store for us, but one thing is for certain, there will be a greater global reach for businesses through this kind of technology.

Please note the image source: ShutterStock.com

Source: http://www.jaymiescotto.com/2014/11/10/the-future-of-global-business-telecommunications-insights-for-2015/

Building Next-Gen ITS for “Big Data” Value

29 May

A lot has been written about “big data” lately.  The rapid growth of varying data sources coupled with

 the enhanced density in data sources is establishing  a huge resource for transportation operators.  The rapid proliferation of data sources from new devices such as smartphones and other newly connected devices, in conjunction with the advancement of technologies for data collection and management have manifested a sizeable inflection point in the availability of data.  So what does this mean for ITS operators and the systems they currently manage?  What will be required to extract and leverage values associated with “big data”?

At First Glance

Federal regulations for performance measures and real-time monitoring associated with MAP-21 and 23 CFR 511 have implemented a framework for the increased need of new, refined data and information systems.  System enhancements will require improvements to existing networks and communications systems in order to optimize data and metadata flows between data sources and central applications. Robust central network equipment, including L3 switches, servers and storage will also be required.  Enhanced security measures  associated with new data sources and big data values will also need to be reviewed and attended to.  New central data warehouse infrastructure will also be required, including new database applications (such as Hadoop), that are capable of managing “big data” and the “Internet of Things” (IoT).

Deeper Dive

A closer look reveals additional layers of change required in order to begin abstracting value from the new data sources.  “Big data” will also require somewhat less obvious changes in the way transportation agencies currently do business.

Increased Data Management and Analytics Expertise –  The new data paradigm will require new staff skills, most notably, experience in data analytics (Quants).  Staff skills will not only require knowledge of the data available now or potentially available in the near term, but also understand transportation systems in order to apply the most beneficial data mining tactics available.  The new role must not only be aware of current data and information needs and values, but also be cognizant of what is capable, and potential hidden values currently unrealized or unknown by an operating agency.  The new role will also be an integral part of the development of embedded system features and be able to identify nuances in data meaning, as well as establish effective predictive analytics.

Policy and Digital Governance –  New data sources are also giving rise to discussion regarding privacy and liability.  Data sourced from private entities will always contend with privacy fears and concerns, at least for the near term, although recent analysis is showing a steady lessoning of those fears as “digital natives” begin to represent a greater percentage of the traveling public.  Data generated from sources outside of transportation agencies, but utilized by transportation agencies  for systems operations, can lead one to question who is responsible should data errors occur that might affect a system.

Networks and Communications – Data sources, formats and general data management practices will need extensive review of existing conditions. What values are attained from real-time, or near real-time collection from subsequent analytics, as well as determining what data is less time dependent.  Existing formats and protocols should also be included in the mapping exercise. For example, CV will require a mandatory upgrade of IP protocols from IPv4 to IPv6.  General planning regarding the utilization of “the cloud” need to be weighed for benefit-cost.  Third-party data brokers and other outsourcing alternatives such as cloud computing need to also be assessed.

Data Management and Analysis Tools – Operating entities also need to look at implementing data management tools (applications) that will assist in extracting value from large data sets.  These tools  should be integrated with core systems, and provide real-time metrics of collected data.  The tools should also provide the ability for “Cloud collaboration”, in order to process data stored by third parties, or general data stored in the cloud.

Wisdom Knowledge Information Data Pyramid

What to do

Transportation budgets are as tight as ever. How can operating agencies begin to make incremental steps towards the goal of realizing benefits associated with “big data”?  The first step is to begin now.  Start by mapping existing data sources to existing data management technologies, policies and processes, from end to end.  Also, widen your perspective and begin to look at possible benefits from a wide array of new data sources.  In addition, “open” it up, and benefit from the wisdom of the crowd.  New analytics skill sets should be considered a condition of certain new hires in the transportation and ITS planning departments.  A staff member should be designated for leading the way with decisions regarding “big data”, relationships with third party data brokers, cloud management, as well as be responsible for implementing an agile framework for next-gen data systems.

References and Resources

Developing a Data Management Program for Next-Gen ITS: A Primer for Mobility Managers

Big Data and Transport

TransDec: Big Data for Transportation

Update from the Data Liberation Front                                          

Source: http://terranautix.com/2014/05/28/building-next-gen-its-for-big-data-value

The Internet of Things Ecosystem

7 Apr

The Internet of Things Ecosystem framework was introduced this past week and was well received for providing a holistic view of the different segments that make up the IoT. This post provides a snapshot of the companies, organizations, technologies and trends within the IoT Ecosystem, and the full list of articles within the segment. Ideally, over time, key players and technologies will start to emerge through the ongoing analysis of the Internet of Things Ecosystem framework.

 

IoT in the News (3/31-4/4)

 

Medical engineers said Sunday they had created a device the size of a plaster which can monitor patients by tracking their muscle activity before administering their medication.Scientists Have Created An Incredible Patient-Monitoring Device That Is The Size Of A Band-Aid

Methods for monitoring so-called “movement disorders” such as epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease have traditionally included video recordings or wearable devices, but these tend to be bulky and inflexible.

The new gadget, which is worn on the skin, looks like a Band-Aid but uses nanotechnology — in which building blocks as small as atoms and molecules are harnessed to bypass problems of bulkiness and stiffness — to monitor the patient.

http://www.businessinsider.com/nanotechnology-patient-monitoring-device-2014-3#ixzz2yA3oYeD0

Hand Hygiene Technology Startup Hyginex Receives Investment from Persistent Systems

Hyginex has committed to saving patient lives through use of its novel hand hygiene improvement and monitoring technology. The system uses patented wearable technology and sensors in healthcare facilities to help doctors and nurses improve hand hygiene practices.

“Hyginex’s unique approach based on innovative wearable technology protects patients in hospitals and improves global healthcare,” says Dr. Sridhar Jagannathan, chief innovation officer for Persistent Systems, Inc. and head of the Persistent Venture Fund. “To this investment in Hyginex, Persistent brings its expertise and focus on emerging medical technologies.”

‘Internet of things’ will significantly alter supply chains

Michael Burkett, managing vice president at Gartner, said: “It’s important to put IoT maturity into perspective, because of the fast pace at which it is emerging, so supply chain strategists need to be looking at its potential now.

“Some IoT devices are more mature, such as commercial telematics now used in trucking fleets to improve logistics efficiency. Some, such as smart fabrics that use sensors within clothing and industrial fabrics to monitor human health or manufacturing processes, are just emerging.”

http://www.supplymanagement.com/news/2014/internet-of-things-will-significantly-alter-supply-chains

Wearable Technology Appeals to Jewelry Consumers

High-tech watches were the most preferred wearable technology, with 55 percent of participants saying they would buy the device, followed by bracelets and wristbands with a 27 percent share.

As for where consumers would make their purchase of wearable devices, there was no clear trend; however, respondents stated that the local independent jeweler was their least preferred retailer. This could still present an opportunity for local jewelers to capture the space by increasing their visibility overall and build a reputation as a ”go-to” source for wearable tech devices.

http://www.diamonds.net/News/NewsItem.aspx?ArticleID=46519&ArticleTitle=Wearable%2BTechnology%2BAppeals%2Bto%2BJewelry%2BConsumers

Microsoft Paid Up To $150M To Buy Wearable Computing IP From The Osterhout Design Group

Microsoft, we have discovered, has paid up to $150 million to buy IP assets related to augmented reality, head-borne computers, and related items from the Osterhout Design Group, a low-profile company that develops wearable computing devices and other gadgets, these days primarily for the military and other government organizations.

As you might remember, we first broke the news that Microsoft was looking at acquiring ODG, or part of its assets, in September 2013, at a price tag of up to $200 million, depending on what went into the deal.

The government continues to be ODG’s primary customer, although as Osterhout reminds us, the pace of technology right now is such that the kinds of innovations being created for enterprises and other organizations has very direct applicability to the consumer market, too — and the reverse as well when you think about the wider trend of the consumerization of IT.

“In terms of what we’re doing [at ODG], we don’t make weapons. We make things that can help people do their jobs,” he says. “The real focus are features that are applicable in the consumer space, too.” In other words, ODG may already be talking to other companies for consumer products; or its door is open to that possibility.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/03/27/microsoft-paid-up-to-150m-to-buy-wearable-computing-ip-from-the-osterhout-design-group/

SITA and Virgin Atlantic win Smart technology award

LONDON – SITA and Virgin Atlantic Airways have received a Smart Technology Award from The Wearables 2014, the leading awards for wearable technology. Part of the 2014 Wearable Technology Show, the award recognized the companies for a pioneering pilot, which tested how Google Glass and Sony Smartwatches could enhance the passenger experience. – See more at:http://www.traveldailynews.com/news/article/59781/sita-and-virgin-atlantic-win#sthash.9Z0U5mmn.dpuf

Microsoft acquires 80 wearable tech assets in $150m deal

The technology juggernaut was in talks to purchase ODG entirely in September last year, an unnamed source told TechCrunch. However, the deal later switched to an IP acquisition. The transaction was completed last year and all related patents and IP transferred in January.

The hefty price tag of $100 million-to-$150 million was attached by another source. Microsoft has given no official comment so far, but the deal has was confirmed by ODG founder and inventor Ralph Osterhout.

http://www.mcvuk.com/news/read/microsoft-acquires-80-wearable-tech-assets-in-150m-deal/0130473

Future of Wearable Tech: Solar-Powered Dresses and Wi-Fi Suits

The designers at Studio Roosegaarde have created a provocative dress called “Intimacy” that becomes transparent based on “close and personal encounters” with other people. The dress is made of smart electronic foil that gradually becomes see-through as its wearer’s heartbeat increases.

http://www.livescience.com/44486-wearable-tech-disappearing-dresses-wifi-suits.html

Wearable Tech Conference arrives in NYC this summer

A conference focused on one of the hottest tech growth areas will launch this summer in New York City. Organized by media group TMC, the Wearable Tech Conference & Expo will be held July 23-24 at The Javits Center.

The agenda for the event will provide attendees with new perspectives on wearable tech devices and technology, how and why they work the way they do and what lies ahead for the billion-dollar industry. Individuals and companies attending the conference will have the opportunity to interact with colleagues, meet new partners, see live demos and participate in in-depth discussions.

“Wearable technology is a rapidly growing trend and one that will reach a broad set of markets, from fashion to healthcare to fitness,” says Rich Tehrani, TMC CEO and conference chairman. “We look forward to providing a robust and interactive experience for our event attendees, providing them the tools and information needed to take advantage of every opportunity in the wearable industry and achieve business success.”

http://www.ept.ca/news/wearable-tech-conference-arrives-in-nyc-this-summer/1002986506/?&er=NA

Marc Newson’s Wearing Technology (Vogue)

MARC NEWSON, designer of some of the world’s most desirable industrial objects, says there’s no question that wearable technology is “the future” but counters that, for now, it falls way short. “I wouldn’t be seen dead wearing [Google Glass],” he says. “It looks pretty stupid. It’s a little bit like that wonderful invention called the Segway.  Such a fantastic piece of technology but you just look like a complete dick when you drive around on it. That’s precisely the moment when I think the fashion world laughs at the world of industrial design.”

http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2014/04/01/marc-newson-wearable-technology

Could wearables become bigger than tablets?

Mobile gadgets won’t just be tucked into your purse or your pocket. Soon, they’ll increasingly be on your wrist, as part of your glasses and even in your clothing. While still in its infancy, wearable technology is poised to take off. The market for the wearables business is expected to exceed $1.5 billion in 2014, double its value last year, according to a report from Juniper Research.

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2014/04/01/could-wearables-become-bigger-than-tablets/

The explanation for recent wearable technology abandonment

The Guardian posted today that one-third of consumers are abandoning their wearable tech devices. The author, Charles Arthur references research from Endeavour Partners in which it states, “one-third of American consumers who have owned a wearable product stopped using it within six months.”

http://www.examiner.com/article/the-explantion-for-recent-wearable-technology-abandonment

How Wearable Tech Could Improve Your Mental Health

Smart wristbands have become increasingly popular tools among people interested in tracking data about themselves, from their heart rate to their movement during daily activities. In the future, these devices could also help people understand the symptoms of conditions such as autism and depression, researchers say.

These researchers have recently focused their work on children with autism, and have found that these children’s expression of their emotions often does not correlate with their internal arousal state as indicated by wristband data. For instance, a child with autism might appear to be experiencing a high-energy episode when, in fact, wristband data indicates that their internal state is calm.

http://www.livescience.com/44516-future-of-smart-wristbands.html

DRESS USES TECHNOLOGY TO GUARANTEE NIP SLIP WHENEVER YOUR HEARTRATE IS ELEVATED

Wearable technology is a scifi idea that’s just starting to become a reality, so it’s to be expected that for a while its gaze is going to exceed its grasp, and in the world of fashion one must make allowances that one typically doesn’t for technology for pieces that blur the line between art and a functional object. But dang, wearable tech, if a dress that turns more translucent based on the speed of your heart rate doesn’t perfectly embody the vast gulf between the dreams of wearable tech and the reality.

http://www.themarysue.com/see-through-dress-heartrate/

Google and designer fashion brand Fossil join in wearable tech

Google and Fossil designer brand announced today that they will create with technology and fashion a designer brand smartwatch as a first step in this union of wearable tech trend, reports Mobile Commerce Press.

The chief strategy and marketing officer, Greg McKelvey, of the Texas-based Fossil released a statement to explain the creating wearable fashion rooted in twenty-first century technology, ‘we believe we are uniquely positioned to develop and bring to market products for our fashion customers that marry the beauty of our designs, the promise of our brands and now the function of new technology.’

http://www.examiner.com/article/google-and-designer-fashion-brand-fossil-join-wearable-tech

The Future of Wearable Technology

Wearable technology is on the rise as companies like Sony, Samsung, and Motorola join the ranks of Google and potentially Apple in the development of smartwatches. At present, some 15 percent of consumers are using this wearable technology, a term that includes everything from Google Glass to fitness bands to smartwatches.

If any company were to come to the forefront in designing a smartwatch, it would inevitably be Google. The company recently announced that it would indeed be delving further into wearable technology with a carefully designed and simple smartwatch model known as Android Wear.

http://tier10lab.com/2014/04/01/the-future-of-wearable-technology/
Devices don’t connect to the Internet to see what their friends are posting on Devicebook. They’re exchanging data and performing tasks via a well-understood paradigm — applications.Internet Of Things – Or Business Of Applications?

There’s a lot of buzz these days about the — forthcoming, already here, arriving between 2013 and 2017 — Internet of Things. Along with that buzz come statistics — particularly from networking expert Cisco, which predicts that billions of devices will connect to the Internet in the next few years.

No one disputes that because it’s obvious. From wearables and Internet-enabled televisions to smart pens and children’s toys, the growth of the Internet of Things seems like an inevitable conclusion.

http://www.informationweek.com/infrastructure/data-center/internet-of-things—or-business-of-applications/d/d-id/1141567

Wearable Technology Innovator Valencell Teams with 3Pillar Global

3Pillar Global, a leading developer of innovative, revenue-generating software products, has announced a product development partnership with Valencell, an innovator in mobile health and fitness technology. 3Pillar and Valencell are collaborating to build a new consumer-facing application that will use industry-leading data from Valencell’s PerformTek sensor technology to help consumers understand a vast array of biometric information.

http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwgeeks/article/Wearable-Technology-Innovator-Valencell-Teams-with-3Pillar-Global-20140401#S9CAi0JG0A1qmbys.99

Growing Internet Of Things Means Growing Opportunity For Solutions Providers

The Internet of Things gives solutions providers an expanded opportunity. It enables them to grow into the role of their customers’ single, trusted advisor and manager of all IT systems and solutions inside — and outside — of the office.

Len DiCostanzo, senior VP of community and business development for Autotask and former managed services provider (MSP), points out, “There is a tremendous opportunity out there.” To capitalize on this opportunity, solutions providers will have to do what they’ve always done — connect things through a network. The Internet of Things, however, means MSPs now need to create solutions to support their customers’ business objectives not only with technology at the office, but also with technology necessary to manage mobile devices and remote users.

http://www.bsminfo.com/doc/growing-internet-of-things-grows-means-growing-opportunity-0001

F. Scott Moody jumps from iPhone fingerprints to Internet of things

Two years after selling his company and technology to Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), AuthenTec founder F. Scott Moody is at it again.

Moody, who helped develop the fingerprint security technology Apple uses in its latest iPhone, has taken a slight pivot with his new Raleigh startup- K4 Connect.

“Basically, K4 Connect is the name of the company that’s providing a software platform that connects various things,” he says.

http://upstart.bizjournals.com/companies/startups/2014/04/01/f-scott-moody-apple-internet.html

Microsoft readies to join the ‘Internet of Things’ with Windows on Devices

We are less than 12 hours away from Microsoft’s keynote at Build 2014. We’re really looking forward to all the news surrounding Windows Phone 8.1. That said, Microsoft will be showing off plenty of other products, devices and services. It also looks like Microsoft is ready to join the ‘Internet of Things’. A website has gone live on the night before Build. The site gives us a little insight into what else Microsoft may announced this week.

Windows on Devices (www.windowsondevices.com) is now live on the internet. The site talks about the next big thing being small and how Microsoft plans to bring Windows to a whole new class of devices.

What sort of devices? A coffee mug, a talking bear, a robot or anything else your imagination can dream up. Microsoft even says they’ll demo a connected piano with Windows on Devices at Build 2014.

It looks like Microsoft might be making development tools for developers looking to join the Internet of Things. An SDK is expected to release during spring 2014 with a look at new software and APIs.  Windows on Devices will allow devs to work with development boards like the Intel Galileo.

http://www.wpcentral.com/comment/823526

Tech companies to work together on Internet of Things

One of the group’s goals is to draw up inter-operability standards so that the devices, sensors and networks members create can communicate with each other and the data they exchange can be secure.

The organization is to be managed by the Object Management Group, a Boston-based nonprofit trade association. The coalition is still discussing which industries could serve as test-beds for new standards.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/tech-companies-to-work-together-on-internet-of-things/2014/03/28/365ad22c-b436-11e3-8cb6-284052554d74_story.html

Start-Up 1248 Gets Backing From Heavyweight

Currently, 1248 is creating an open standard to allow IoT applications and services to work together as part of a project funded by the U.K. government’s Technology Strategy Board. The U.K.’s tech industry recently received a boost from Prime Minister David Cameron, who has pledged more than £45m to help companies develop IoT technology.

http://www.connectedworldmag.com/latestNews.aspx?id=NEWS140325170804173

85% of the public sector is unprepared for the impact of wearable technology on its IT infrastructure – 

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request by Ipswitch has revealed that when asked specifically about managing wearable technology entering the workplace – from Google Glass to smart watches – an overwhelming 85% of public sector organisations (PSOs) admitted to having no plan in place.

The request revealed that despite 93% of PSOs having invested in network management tools, less than a quarter (23%) bother to review network performance regularly during office hours.

It also found that, despite the rich feature set offered by these tools, almost two-thirds (65%) of PSOs across the UK are unable to differentiate between wired and wireless devices on their network.

Finally, even though performance was cited as a key priority by 87% of PSOs, only just over a third (34%) review network performance on a weekly basis or less frequently.  One in eight (12%) of PSOs admit to not reviewing network performance at all.

http://www.information-age.com/technology/data-centre-and-it-infrastructure/123457858/85-public-sector-unprepared-impact-wearable-technology-its-it-infrastructure#sthash.2QApmN1c.dpuf

Internet of Things Enables $3.88 Trillion in Potential Value to Manufacturers

ARC Advisory Group believes that the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) will offer value across multiple industrial sectors and applications. Cisco expands on this, using the term, “Internet of Everything” (IoE) to describe its vision of bringing people, process, and data together via the Internet of Things. The company predicts that the IoE could enable manufacturers to generate $3.88 trillion of value through a combination of increased revenues and lower costs over the next ten years.

http://www.ien.eu/article/internet-of-things-enables-388-trillion-in-potential-value-to-manufacturers/

Australian “Internet-of-Things at home” market to hit $1 billion by 2017: Telsyte

The Australian smart-home automation market is set to reach almost $1 billion by 2017 making the connected home a reality for many Australians.

A new study from the technology analyst firm Telsyte has revealed the home automation market will generate $160 million in device revenues in 2014.

This is expected to grow to $917 million by 2017.

http://www.arnnet.com.au/article/541779/australian_internet-of things_home_market_hit_1_billion_by_2017_telsyte_/

Identiv Raises $20M to Deliver Trust to the Internet of Things

FREMONT, Calif., March 31, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Identiv (Nasdaq:INVE) today announced that it has entered into a $20.0 million term loan and line-of-credit agreement through Opus Bank’s Technology Banking Division. The proceeds of the transaction will be used to retire existing debt and enhance liquidity, creating a stronger financial platform to accelerate growth.

“We are now focusing on delivering trust solutions for the rapidly expanding connected world,” said Jason Hart, CEO of Identiv. “Our ‘Trust Your World’ vision is applicable to billions of everyday items that demand to be trusted. We are expanding from a strong base, having shipped product for well over 100 million everyday items in 2013.”

“We could not be more excited about contributing to this shift in the industry. There is so much potential in the emerging Internet of Things market and in connecting everyday items,” said Kevin McBride, Senior Managing Director and Head of Opus Bank’s Technology Banking Division. “Identiv is a clear market leader with its strong capabilities and core competencies, and we are proud to be joining Identiv on this journey.”

http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20140331-912568.html

The challenge of the Internet of Things in the workplace and data centre

Peter Wood, ISACA member and CEO of penetration testers First Base Technologies said that as devices are often built small and cheap, they have little in the way of authentication and encryption built-in. It works in the background, but an educated attacker could leverage devices to get access to the rest of the network.

“As we get smart buildings with connected heating, ventilation and air conditioning it is not unfeasible for an attacker to switch off the air conditioning in the data centre, or to turn up the heating so everyone has to leave,” he said.

“The challenge is all of these devices can talk to each other. A smart building will have servers to address all of the endpoints, but it is not difficult for an attacker to impersonate that server or take the devices over completely. In the Far East you will see smart cities sooner rather than later.”

http://www.itproportal.com/2014/04/02/challenge-internet-things-workplace-and-data-centre/#ixzz2xmSLh0YL

Keeping track of athletes with wearable tech

Sports fans among us have seen the proliferation of wearable GPS devices in professional sports such as AFL and the rugby codes, where tracking devices are worn between the shoulder blades of the athletes.

And it is not limited to the professionals, as any Lycra-clad weekend cyclist with a GPS-enabled smartphone will tell you.

By tracking athletes and measuring heart rates it is possible to monitor fatigue, track player movements in relation to each other, plan team strategies and improve training.

The next revolution is to make it all possible indoors and under stadium roofs, and with the new CSIRO indoor tracking system the future is already upon us.

With the addition of the CSIRO wireless ad-hoc system for positioning (WASP) technology, these parameters can all be measured under the roof of the Docklands stadium, in ice hockey rinks, netball centres and indoor velodromes. The device, called ClearSky, is produced by Victorian company Catapult Sports which supplies GPS devices to the international elite sports market, including the US National Football League (NFL) and European football leagues.

http://phys.org/news/2014-03-track-athletes-wearable-tech.html#jCp
We expect to see full or nearly full adoption in 2014 and beyond as wellness and wearable use continues to expand. From a market leadership standpoint, three vendors have quickly broken from the pack in the Bluetooth Smart race. In products released in 2013, we found Qualcomm, Broadcom, and MediaTek as the providers of this technology in nearly 90 per cent of devices we analysed. Where Qualcomm and Broadcom are primarily seen in the global who’s who of mobile devices, MediaTek has ramped up quickly and is seen in the leading Chinese devices.Bluetooth Smart charts course to widespread IoT adoption

http://www.eetasia.com/ART_8800696690_499488_NT_ec0157eb.HTM

Wearable technology, beacon, augmented reality, and content

Wearable technology was one of the big topics at SXSW 2014. A lot of the panelists spoke about the importance of brands to deliver valuable & unique content and wearable technology will allow for that, although, brands will need to be careful not to overload fans/consumers with content.

Contextual interaction is one of the main drivers of wearable technology and brands will be able to differentiate themselves by the way they connect with consumers through story telling.

http://blogs.imediaconnection.com/blog/2014/03/31/wearable-technology-beacon-augmented-reality-and-content/

Fraunhofer Designs Flexible Energy Harvesters for Wearable Tech

The development of wearable electronics demands new types of power sources that are flexible and compact enough to fit into these devices. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany are working on this problem with the design of a flexible energy harvester that can be manufactured through a low-cost printing process.

The FP7 MATFLEXEND project at the Fraunhofer-Institut für Zuverlässigkeit und Mikrointegration (IZM) is developing harvesters that convert mechanical deformation into energy by using a capacitive converter exploiting a capacitor’s deformation, according to information about the project on the institute’s website.

http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1386&doc_id=272547&itc=dn_analysis_element&dfpPParams=ind_184,industry_alt,aid_272547&dfpLayout=blog

ADI Engineering Announces White Oak Canyon Gateway as part Intel® Gateway Solution for the Internet of Things (IoT)

ADI Engineering, Inc. today announced availability of its “White Oak Canyon” IoT gateway based on the new Intel® Quark™ SoC X1000. With an integrated and prevalidated IoT software solution from Wind River and McAfee, White Oak Canyon is available from ADI Engineering as a turnkey production solution to OEMs adopting the Intel® Gateway for the Internet of Things (IoT). ADI also supplies the White Oak Canyon hardware by itself to customers preferring to provide their own software. Shipments of White Oak Canyon commence in early May, and detailed product information can be found on ADI’s website.

With its comprehensive communications and security solution from Wind River and McAfee, White Oak Canyon provides seamless connectivity between devices and the cloud, ensuring interoperability of edge devices through an open architecture enabling rapid application and service differentiation. The White Oak Canyon hardware platform provides a full suite of highly integrated features, including the 400 MHz Intel Quark SoC X1000, 2x 10/100Mb Ethernet ports, 1GB DDR3 memory, integrated wireless including ZigBee, 2G/3G, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi, TPM, analog inputs and digital I/O, optional 1- and 3-phase AC power measurement, RS-232, isolated RS-485, USB, and MicroSD.

http://www.fortmilltimes.com/2014/04/01/3389443/adi-engineering-announces-white.html
Michael Burkett, managing vice president at Gartner, said: “It’s important to put IoT maturity into perspective, because of the fast pace at which it is emerging, so supply chain strategists need to be looking at its potential now.‘Internet of things’ will significantly alter supply chains

“Some IoT devices are more mature, such as commercial telematics now used in trucking fleets to improve logistics efficiency. Some, such as smart fabrics that use sensors within clothing and industrial fabrics to monitor human health or manufacturing processes, are just emerging.”

http://www.supplymanagement.com/news/2014/internet-of-things-will-significantly-alter-supply-chains

How the Internet of Things is Keeping Trains on Track

Despite 200 years of development, train accidents are still a cause for concern in the rail industry, but now sensor technologies are helping make things safer.

InSync Releases iApp Cobalt Platform for the Internet of Things and RFID Applications

InSync Software, Inc., the leading provider of enterprise IoT and RFID software, today announced the availability of its iApp application platform, Cobalt Release 5. InSync’s award-winning iApp platform powers Fortune 500 companies’ RFID, GPS and sensor-driven asset tracking and management applications, helping these businesses locate and track mission-critical assets and improve efficiency in operations.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1822349#ixzz2xegf5iiO

Intel to turn Dublin into world’s first ‘internet of things’ city

Almost a week after revealing a US$5bn investment in Ireland, chip giant Intel is embarking on a plan with Dublin City Council to make Dublin the most densely sensored city in the world.

The project to make Dublin a ‘Global Demonstrator for Smart City Sensors’ will use Intel Quark-based Gateway platforms.

Two hundred of these sensing gateways will be placed around Dublin City to gather and monitor environmental data, in particular noise and air quality. Each of these gateways can deploy up to six sensors.

http://www.siliconrepublic.com/innovation/item/36336-intel-to-turn-dublin-into/
In the near future, consumers will be adorning themselves with wearable technology that will weave an incredibly detailed picture of their lives. A cloud of information will float around you with details on sleep habits, what you ate for breakfast, who you are meeting for dinner, your heart rate, and much more. Insurance companies will likely harvest this data to adjust your rates. Governments will undoubtedly hack into this cloud of personal data to track down dissidents. Marketers will have access to a goldmine of personalized information that will be used to market products.WEARABLE TECH: THE SURVEILLANCE GRID OF THE FUTURE

http://www.blacklistednews.com/Wearable_Tech%3A_The_Surveillance_Grid_Of_The_Future/34141/0/38/38/Y/M.html

Internet of Things: Mitigating the Risk

Tony Sager, a 30-plus-year National Security Agency information assurance expert, has a new mission: to identify ways to help mitigate the cyberthreats posed by the Internet of Things, those billions upon billions of unmanned devices connected to the Internet.

Since his retirement in 2012 as chief operating officer of the NSA’s information assurance directorate, Sager has focused on getting organizations to adopt cybersecurity best practices. More recently, he has begun to look at the vulnerabilities presented by the Internet of Things as the chief technologist of the Council on Cybersecurity, a not-for-profit group that promotes practices to assure a safe and open Internet.

http://www.bankinfosecurity.com/blogs/internet-things-mitigating-risk-p-1647

Source: http://mattceni.com/2014/04/06/internet-of-things-in-the-news-week-of-331-44/

This drone can steal what’s on your phone

23 Mar

The next threat to your privacy could be hovering over head while you walk down the street.

Hackers have developed a drone that can steal the contents of your smartphone — from your location data to your Amazon password — and they’ve been testing it out in the skies of London. The research will be presented next week at the Black Hat Asia cybersecurity conference in Singapore.

The technology equipped on the drone, known as Snoopy, looks for mobile devices with Wi-Fi settings turned on.

Snoopy takes advantage of a feature built into all smartphones and tablets: When mobile devices try to connect to the Internet, they look for networks they’ve accessed in the past.

“Their phone will very noisily be shouting out the name of every network its ever connected to,” Sensepost security researcher Glenn Wilkinson said. “They’ll be shouting out, ‘Starbucks, are you there?…McDonald’s Free Wi-Fi, are you there?”

That’s when Snoopy can swoop into action (and be its most devious, even more than the cartoon dog): the drone can send back a signal pretending to be networks you’ve connected to in the past. Devices two feet apart could both make connections with the quadcopter, each thinking it is a different, trusted Wi-Fi network. When the phones connect to the drone, Snoopy will intercept everything they send and receive.

“Your phone connects to me and then I can see all of your traffic,” Wilkinson said.

That includes the sites you visit, credit card information entered or saved on different sites, location data, usernames and passwords. Each phone has a unique identification number, or MAC address, which the drone uses to tie the traffic to the device.

The names of the networks the phones visit can also be telling.

“I’ve seen somebody looking for ‘Bank X’ corporate Wi-Fi,” Wilkinson said. “Now we know that that person works at that bank.”

CNNMoney took Snoopy out for a spin in London on a Saturday afternoon in March and Wilkinson was able to show us what he believed to be the homes of several people who had walked underneath the drone. In less than an hour of flying, he obtained network names and GPS coordinates for about 150 mobile devices.

He was also able to obtain usernames and passwords for Amazon, PayPal and Yahoo accounts created for the purposes of our reporting so that we could verify the claims without stealing from passersby.

Collecting metadata, or the device IDs and network names, is probably not illegal, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Intercepting usernames, passwords and credit card information with the intent of using them would likely violate wiretapping and identity theft laws.

Wilkinson, who developed the technology with Daniel Cuthbert at Sensepost Research Labs, says he is an ethical hacker. The purpose of this research is to raise awareness of the vulnerabilities of smart devices.

Installing the technology on drones creates a powerful threat because drones are mobile and often out of sight for pedestrians, enabling them to follow people undetected.

While most of the applications of this hack are creepy, it could also be used for law enforcement and public safety. During a riot, a drone could fly overhead and identify looters, for example.

Users can protect themselves by shutting off Wi-Fi connections and forcing their devices to ask before they join networks.

http://money.cnn.com/2014/03/20/technology/security/drone-phone/?google_editors_picks=true – Thanks to Da Brayn for bringing this to the attention of the It’s Interesting community.

Source: http://its-interesting.com/2014/03/21/this-drone-can-steal-whats-on-your-phone/

Internet of Everything (IoE) Top 10 Insights from Cisco’s IoE Value

13 Feb

Index Survey of 7,500 Decision Makers Across 12 Countries

IOT-17

Introduction
With the increased pace of change worldwide, many executives are asking, “How can I create value for my company both now and in the future?” and “How can I take advantage of the Internet of Everything (IoE) to increase innovation and strengthen our competitive position?”

In early 2013, Cisco determined that IoE — the networked connection of people, process, data, and things — will create $14.4 trillion in total Value at Stake over 10 years (2013 – 2022). To help executives realize as much of this value as possible, Cisco just launched new, groundbreaking research — called the IoE Value Index —that shows $1.2 trillion of value is “up for grabs” in calendar year 2013.

The IoE Value Index is driven by a survey of approximately 7,500 business and IT decision makers from private-sector firms in 12 of the world’s largest global economies (Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, Russia, United Kingdom, and United States). In addition to sizing the opportunity by calendar year, the Index provides valuable insights that enable executives to transform and position their businesses to capture more IoE Value at Stake both this year and in years to come.

The Internet of Everything is poised to generate at least $613 billion in global corporate profits in calendar year 2013.

Insight No. 1:
The Internet of Everything is poised to generate at least $613 billion in global corporate profits in calendar year 2013.
These profits stem from corporations around the globe leveraging the Internet of Everything to make their operations more efficient and provide new and/or improved customer experiences.

Insight No. 2:
Corporations could potentially nearly double those profits by adopting business practices, customer approaches, and technologies that more fully leverage IoE.
While IoE is driving a huge number of corporate profits, an additional $544 billion could be realized in calendar year 2013 if companies adjust their strategies to take better advantage of IoE.

Given the level of evident parity, there is real potential for a shakeup of the competitive landscape in nearly every industry

Insight No. 3:
Traditional business advantages are evaporating quickly.
• Firms in developed markets are now realizing the greatest share of IoE value. For example, among the countries studied, German companies are capturing the highest percentage of value at 62.3 percent, followed by Japan at 57.3 percent. In contrast, firms in emerging markets are generally realizing a lower percentage of IoE Value at Stake. For example, companies in Mexico are the lowest in the study at 47.1 percent on average. The narrow range (15.2 percent) between the top and bottom countries, however, highlights the parity among firms worldwide.
• Many companies in developed countries have invested heavily in IT for decades, and have extensive experience implementing the kinds of technologies — such as collaborative tools, industrial automation, sensors, and analytics — that create the foundation of IoE. To stay ahead of competitors in emerging markets, however, firms must continue to invest in the technologies, and in the people and process enablers, that will fuel future success in the IoE economy.

Insight No. 4:
Competition will intensify as IoE evens the playing field between large and small companies around the globe.
Given the level of evident parity, there is real potential for a shakeup of the competitive landscape in nearly every industry. Midsize firms and companies from emerging economies pose a formidable and growing challenge to market incumbents.
• Midsize firms (500-1,999 employees) are actually capturing slightly more Value at Stake on a percentage basis than large enterprises with at least 10,000 employees — 54.1 percent versus 52.4 percent.
• Companies in emerging markets are more confident in their ability to realize IoE value. On a scale of 1-10, where 10 is “extremely confident,” executives from emerging markets scored a 7.8, in contrast to 6.7 for executives in developed markets. Many of these countries, such as Brazil, China, and India, have increased their IT investments in recent years at a rate that far outpaces the global average. In addition, IoE technology drivers such as cloud services and mobility have made it possible for emerging-market firms to close ground quickly on those companies in developed markets that have not remained on the leading edge of technology innovation and adoption.

Insight No. 5:
IT-intensive sectors are capturing a higher percentage of IoE value.
• Companies in high tech and telecommunications (65.4 percent) and financial services (60.5 percent) are realizing a higher percentage of IoE Value at Stake in 2013 than firms in industries that are less IT-intensive.
• Companies in manufacturing, energy, and retail have captured the smallest share of Value at Stake so far, but also have the greatest potential to gain competitive advantage.

Cisco’s analysis reveals the quality of a company’s technology infrastructure and tools is the single most important factor in determining the amount of value realized.

Insight No. 6:
Executives in surveyed countries anticipate job growth and wage increases as a result of IoE.
• Forty-seven percent of executives think IoE will lead to higher wages at their companies, while only 6 percent think wage cuts are likely. This is particularly evident in emerging markets.
• Thirty-three percent of executives believe IoE will lead to higher employment levels in their firms, versus 28 percent who think job losses are more likely. In developed countries, executives, while still positive, were somewhat more reticent about the prospects for job creation.

Insight No. 7:
Executives believe IoE will make their firms more secure.
• Information and physical security are seen as the primary downsides associated with the increased connectedness that comes with IoE.
• Still, 50 percent of respondents think IoE will make information more secure, while just 19 percent fear it will be less secure.
Insight No. 8:
While technology is pivotal, people and process make the difference.
While data analytics is an important enabler of IoE, “data” has become ubiquitous, and is not in itself a differentiator.
• Cisco’s analysis reveals the quality of a company’s technology infrastructure and tools is the single most important factor in determining the amount of value realized. A strong technology foundation, while insufficient on its own, is required for companies to capture Value at Stake.
• However, the combination of “people” and “process” enablers represent more than half of the total value realized. These are the competitive levers that executives must address. Specifically, people-centric management practices and strong information management loom large as the top priorities.

With more and more companies gaining access to technology and innovations that level the playing field, such as cloud computing, what really matters is how executives harness these innovations to maximize value realized from IoE.

Insight No. 9:
The key challenge: harnessing innovation for business gain.
With more and more companies gaining access to technology and innovations that level the playing field, such as cloud computing, what really matters is how executives harness these innovations to maximize value realized from IoE. To that end, the top three challenges cited by respondents in realizing IoE value were:
1. Investing in the right technology infrastructure and capabilities
2. Integrating new technologies with legacy IT environments
3. Updating processes to absorb new technologies

Insight No. 10:
Firms must invest in the right IoE capabilities to improve competitiveness.
Cisco identified several key areas of opportunity for firms in sectors that have the greatest potential to benefit from IoE. To capture the most value, these companies should focus on the following IoE-driven capabilities:
• Manufacturing firms: real-time, multidimensional data analysis; integrated video collaboration; remote tracking of physical assets; intelligent robots
• Energy firms: integration of sensor data; ability to locate experts when vast distances are involved between experts and energy-production sources; predictive analytics
• Retailers: data visualization and predictive analytics; BYOD; location-based marketing

 

Source: http://cloudwiser.wordpress.com/2014/02/11/internet-of-everything-ioe-top-10-insights-from-ciscos-ioe-value-index-survey-of-7500-decision-makers-across-12-countries/

U.S. seeks trials to test transition to digital phone networks

31 Jan

 

U.S. wireless providers like AT&T Inc andVerizon Communications Inc on Thursday received a nod from regulators to test a transition of the telephone industry away from traditional analog networks to digital ones.

The Federal Communications Commission unanimously voted in favor of trials, in which telecommunications companies would test switching telephone services from existing circuit-switchtechnology to an alternative Internet protocol-based one to see how the change may affect consumers.

The experiments approved by the FCC would not test the new technology – it is already being used – and would not determine law and policy regulating it, FCC staff said. The trials would seek to establish, among other things, how consumers welcome the change and how new technology performs in emergency situations, including in remote locations.

“What we’re doing here is a big deal. This is an important moment,” FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said. “We today invite service providers to propose voluntary experiments for all-IP networks.”

The move in part grants the application by AT&T to conduct IP transition tests as companies that offer landline phone services seek to ultimately replace their old copper wires with newer technology like fiber or wireless.

“We cannot continue requiring service providers to invest in both old networks and new networks forever,” Commissioner Ajit Pai, a Republican, said.

Some consumers, particularly in rural or hard-to-reach areas, have complained about poor connectivity of their IP-based services. Advocates have also expressed concerns about the impact of the transition on consumers with disabilities.

“I think we must be mindful of the impact this transition has on consumers — their needs, their expectations and their willingness to embrace network change,” said Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democrat.

The trials will be voluntary, and regulators require that the experiments “cover areas with different population densities and demographics, different topologies, and/or different seasonal and meteorological conditions.” They also require that no consumers be left disconnected.

Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/01/30/usa-fcc-iptransition-idUSL2N0L414G20140130

Eight technologies making waves in 2014

9 Jan

During 2014, eight major areas of technology will make waves, increasing their capacity to change how business operates, creates value and responds to customers. Governments too will need to learn to play by new rules. The list is by no means exhaustive, and we would gladly hear your suggestions. Their impacts will play out over many years, but we see 2014 as a time for critical growth.

What is changing?

  1. Variable cloud forecast- The cloud will continue to evolve and transform and enable mobile and tablet-based services. Companies will need to incorporate enhanced digital experiences and services into their customer offers and internal processes. Cities will be able to create responsive, intelligence-based strategies and reduce IT costs.
  2. The Internet of Things (IoT) gets personal- Connectivity and embedded intelligence are beginning to hit critical mass as ever more equipment, from watches to cars, is connected. As a result, our surroundings will begin to ‘look after us’, our homes and cars will do more and more for us, services such as healthcare will migrate to the home, the sharing economy will challenge more sectors.
  3. M-Payment, a logical next step- As consumers reach ever more for their smartphones to research options and make purchases, so their use of their smartphone to pay is increasing. Retailers, restaurants, and services need to be ready, or miss out on these hyper-connected consumers.
  4. Wearable technologies grabbing the headlines- Momentum is building and capabilities are rising as wearable technologies begin to get into their stride, and bring a host of new interfaces with gesture, voice, BCI (Brain Computer Interface) and haptics all playing a role. Health and medical applications are growing, along with others. Watch out for our forthcoming report on Wearable technologies.
  5. 3D printing delivers on new fronts- Several patents end this year and 3D printer prices are falling to under $500, which may liberate a wave of experimentation. Bio-printing may see a major breakthrough with the first liver being 3D printed. NASA is preparing to take 3D printing into space. But, criminals will also explore its potential for counterfeiting and weaponry.
  6. Big data going extreme- A direct knock on effect of the growth of the IoT will be ever more data streams coming on line; big data will become even bigger. Competition to provide devices, tools and techniques which can simplify and make sense of it will increase. New approaches to medical research may reveal significant new insights. Consumers may become more aware of the value of their data.
  7. Gaming playing hard and fast- Gaming is leading the charge on many new technologies- enhancing player interaction, creating more immersive experiences, developing new graphics and displays. It is also migrating to mobiles, colonising our living rooms and integrating entertainment. Gaming will continue to disrupt not just leisure, but learning, retailing, and marketing as its capabilities migrate.
  8. Machines get very, very clever- New chips will bring self-learning machines that can ‘tolerate’ errors, process automation that requires little or no programming, robots and other forms of AI (Artificial Intelligence) that are able to see, hear and navigate ever more like humans.

Implications

These eight technology areas – collectively and in some cases individually – have the capability to transform processes and industries, create new opportunities and new competition, to transform business models and drive innovation, generate new jobs and annihilate others, and to provide companies, governments and consumers with ever more power at their fingertips. Organisations will need to take a systems view of their potential and impacts in order to develop strategic responses to ride the technology waves not drown in them.

Over the coming year we will continue to scan for developments in these and the many other areas of change that will affect us all, and discuss the impacts and implications in more detail.

If you would like to explore the impacts of these and other areas of technology for your business, please contact us to discuss how we might help you develop technology roadmaps, impact and risk assessments, and assess strategic options.

Source: http://shapingtomorrowblog.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/eight-technologies-making-waves-in-2014/

New Wi-Fi Technology Can Track You Through Walls

2 Jan

One of the hallmarks of technology is dual-use capability. It is for this reason that we are softened up with all of the benefits, before being introduced to the darker side. Technology has always been a double-edged sword, but we are witnessing a closure in the gap between good and bad as technology is now advancing at a much higher rate of speed in tandem with a growing global police state.

A few months ago, I remember seeing a story about how a new microwave device could see through rubble to detect the beating heart of people trapped under a collapsed building. I immediately thought, wow that’s a good thing … ohhhh, wait a minute. Seeing through rubble; isn’t that the same as seeing through walls?

And here comes the dark side…..

New Wi-Fi Technology Can Track You Through Walls

If radiation from Wi-Fi was not dangerous enough, now they plan to direct Wi-Fi rays directly at moving objects, better known as pets & people. It may be a small amount of expousure, but that is over a long period of time, which we do not know the long term effects.

 

Source: http://newzaholic.com/2014/01/02/new-wi-fi-technology-can-track-you-through-walls/

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