Cash raised and alliances formed in spreading IoT industry ecosystems
THE ECOSYSTEM VIEW: In the latest instalment of his ecosystem column, Antony Savvas charts the latest movers and shakers in the Internet of Things (IoT) industry.
Traxens has closed a €20 million ($22.7 million) Series C financing round with key strategic partners. Funding will allow the company to finance a scale-up of its IoT data systems for smart containers and rail freight, while extending operations worldwide with a focus on Asia.
The latest investment round was led by the Itochu Corporation, Bpifrance and Supernova Invest. The cash will enable Traxens to launch global large-scale sea/land IoT tracking solutions on vessels operated by its partner shipping companies, including CMA, CGM and MSC. In June this year, it was announced that Maersk will become a shareholder and customer with an initial order for up to 50,000 of Traxens’ IoT containers.
Ouster, a provider of high-resolution lidar (laser imaging detection and ranging) sensors for autonomous vehicles, robotics and mapping, has announced its expansion into Europe and the Asia-Pacific regions with new offices in Paris, Shanghai and Hong Kong.
San Francisco-headquartered Ouster says the expansion will enable “deep customer relationships” and enhance customer support through local field application engineering teams, while guaranteeing faster order fulfilment to its growing worldwide customer base.
“Ouster’s global footprint already includes over 450 customers spanning nearly 50 countries,” said Ouster CEO, Angus Pacala. “Our international expansion is core to continuing to provide exceptional delivery and support in every region we operate.”
DT into eSIMs
Deutsche Telekom has selected Idemia’s Entitlement server solution to launch eSIM-enabled devices in Europe.
Smartphones, wearables and connected devices are continuously evolving with new features to make our lives easier. To ensure a seamless user experience, device original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are introducing entitlement specifications to optimise the way devices and networks interact.
Idemia’s Smart Connect Entitlement is part of its Smart Connect Platform, an end-to-end solution for mobile operators wanting to support eSIM devices. Supporting both iOS and Android platforms, the flexible cloud-based solution delivers non-invasive network integration to mobile operators.
According to the makers, they can cost-effectively and quickly deploy Smart Connect Entitlement for authentication for devices and subscribers, entitlement authorisation, subscription/message notifications, VoLTE and VoWiFi management and SMS-free feature registration.
Smart Connect Entitlement, said the telco, ensures Deutsche Telekom will “always have the very latest OEM specifications” to support smartphones, wearables and tablets on a “cost-effective and easy-to-deploy platform”.
Thales and Tata Communications have joined forces to address businesses’ data security concerns around IoT. They are working together to develop a secure global IoT connectivity solution.
Tata Communications’ MOVE mobility and IoT platform and Thales’ T-Sure warranted digital identity offering are together set to unlock the value in data generated by connected devices such as cars and trucks, “whilst maintaining the integrity and security of IoT data”, said the partners.
Foresight in China
Israel’s Foresight Autonomous Holdings, a player in automotive vision systems, has announced the signing of a multi-phase technological cooperation agreement with a “Chinese Tier One supplier” to develop smart mobility solutions for the Chinese automotive industry, and specifically for two Chinese vehicle manufacturers.
Foresight will collaborate with the supplier to design, develop and commercialise automatic safety solutions to be implemented in the vehicles of the Chinese car makers. Foresight also hopes to integrate its QuadSight vision system into existing projects of car makers.
To help the initiative, the partners plan to approach the Innovation Authorities in each of their respective countries for project funding, as part of the Israel-China bilateral governmental funding programmes. However, project progress is not dependent on this funding.
Who knows where this will lead for the IoT ecosystem as a whole, but it will no doubt have an effect: Ikea has set up a dedicated smart home unit – Ikea Home Smart. The furniture firm has actually been in the IoT space since 2012, but it now wants to step up its efforts by investing a whole chunk more in its activities.
The author is freelance technology writer, Antony Savvas.