The Week in IoT: Samsung invests US$22bn, Sierra swats analysts with results, and Siemens splashes the cash

It’s been quite a week for the tech sector. Some vendors are betting the farm to catch up or just to find a niche in the Internet of Things. Others are smirking as they see a return on earlier IoT investments. Jeremy Cowan reports from a volatile marketplace.

Samsung Group is throwing US$22 billion (yes, you read that right) into artificial intelligence (AI) and other new technologies, Siemens continues to buy business, IBM has opened four new testing centres to focus on security for automotive and industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) applications, Intel is focusing on chips for AI, while Sierra Wireless says “I told you so!”.

Seoul, Korea-based Samsung Group (005930.KS) has told Reuters it will invest 25 trillion won ($22 billion) in artificial intelligence, 5G mobile technology, electronic components for vehicles, and the biopharmaceutical business in pursuit of new growth areas. (Also see: Qualcomm pays $2bn as it kills plans to buy NXP but board authorises $30bn stock repurchase, insists strategy unchanged.)

D’you want chips with that?

Weakness in Samsung’s semiconductor and smartphone businesses has forced the Korean giant into a radical rethink of its development strategy. In fact, this investment is expected to be part of a 180 trillion won ($158 billion) three-year plan to create new revenue streams. There has been a long wait for evidence of Samsung’s new business direction since the heir to the industrial group Jay Y. Lee was imprisoned for bribery. He was released from jail in February on a suspended sentence.

Intel (INTC) reports that it sold $1 billion worth of Xeon AI processor chips in 2017. It too has suffered, this time from falling PC sales and is increasingly dependent on revenues from data centres that provide the computing power for mobile and web applications. These centres are said to be reliant on artificial intelligence for speech recognition and other functions.

Siemens musters $600mn for mendix

Meanwhile, Siemens (SIEGY) has agreed to acquire mendix, a provider of cloud native low code application development. Siemens will pay €0.6 billion in cash to acquire the Rotterdam-based company which helps enterprises to digitalise their operations. Low code application development platforms provide features for rapid development, deployment and execution of cloud-based applications.

Klaus Helmrich, member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG says, “Mendix is a leader in the rapidly expanding low-code segment and their platform will help our customers to adopt MindSphere even faster by accelerating cloud-based application development for the Industrial Internet of Things.”

mendix will retain its brand and continue serving customers across a range of industries with its platform and broad ecosystem and community. Siemens will invest in mendix’s independent product roadmap, “continuing (mendix’s) legacy as the most-innovative, open low-code cloud platform”.

Sierra Wireless can afford to smile

It’s fair to say that some investment analysts have been forced into a major about-turn by Canada-based Sierra Wireless’s latest financial results.

Market watchers have rapidly been changing their advice to BUY as Sierra Wireless’s Q2 Earnings results showed a year-on-year rise in total revenue of 16.4% to $201.9 million. Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, depreciation & amortisation) grew by 4.7% in the same period, sending $15.6 million to the bottom line. The company’s guidance for Q3 is for revenues in the range from $198 million to $207 million, with a midpoint that is above analysts’ earlier expectations.

Interim CEO, Kent Thexton is allowed a smile

The company puts the results put down to a successful swing into higher margin markets such as the Internet of Things (where revenues rose 210%) and Enterprise Solutions (up 31%).

Interim CEO, Kent Thexton, described the financial performance as “solid”, while Marc Overton, SVP & general manager of IoT Services, sees strong global mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) opportunities. The Numerex acquisition is also claimed to be integrating well and this is increasing the scale of cloud and connectivity solutions. Sierra 1 – Analysts 0.

Big Blue sees Red, but in a good way

The author is Jeremy Cowan, editorial director & publisher of IoT Now and VanillaPlus.

According to a report in Security Week, IBM has expanded its network of security testing laboratories.

Big Blue’s team of veteran hackers (confusingly called X-Force Red) now has four new labs to work in. The team is tasked with finding security vulnerabilities in devices and systems. The new facilities in Australia, the UK and two in the US, test the security of connected vehicles, consumer and industrial Internet of Things technologies, as well as banks’ Automated Teller Machines (ATMs).

All told, that’s a lot of cash on the move and much of it’s headed out of semiconductors and smartphones, into the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence. And those who’ve been saying the IoT is just hype may want to pause for thought.

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_OR @jcIoTnow






9 IoT applications that will change everything

Posted on: September 1, 2021

Whether you are a future-minded CEO, tech-driven CEO or IT leader, you’ve come across the term IoT before. It’s often used alongside superlatives regarding how it will revolutionize the way you work, play, and live. But is it just another buzzword, or is it the as-promised technological holy grail? The truth is that Internet of

Read more

Which IoT Platform 2021? IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide

Posted on: August 30, 2021

There are several different parts in a complete IoT solution, all of which must work together to get the result needed, write IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide – Which IoT Platform 2021? authors Robin Duke-Woolley, the CEO and Bill Ingle, a senior analyst, at Beecham Research. Figure 1 shows these parts and, although not all

Read more

CAT-M1 vs NB-IoT – examining the real differences

Posted on: June 21, 2021

As industry players look to provide the next generation of IoT connectivity, two different standards have emerged under release 13 of 3GPP – CAT-M1 and NB-IoT.

Read more

IoT and home automation: What does the future hold?

Posted on: June 10, 2020

Once a dream, iot home automation is slowly but steadily becoming a part of daily lives around the world. In fact, it is believed that the global market for smart home automation will reach $40 billion by 2020.

Read more

Snow Software study uncovers the realities vs. the promises of cloud

Posted on: October 26, 2021

26 October, 2021 –Snow Software, the global provider of technology intelligence, unveiled findings from its most recent survey, based on the input from more than 500 IT leaders from organisations with over 500 employees in the United States and United Kingdom to determine the current state of cloud infrastructure.

Read more

CloudM announces Archive feature which save businesses time and money while meeting compliance demands

Posted on: October 26, 2021

CloudM, a SaaS data management platform, has announced the launch of Archive, a new feature which allows users to easily, automatically, and safely store and recover user data, helping businesses to remain compliant without facing the mounting user license fees associated with traditional archiving and ediscovery solutions.

Read more