The car of the future is already here, we just need to give it a legal framework and more sensors. This weeks podcast talks about connected gars, garages and HVAC systems.
Texas Instruments has created a family of chips that lets you connect your devices to the internet without much ado. The TI SimpleLink chips connect directly to the existing ecosystem of cloud partners that TI has signed up, making it easy to prototype a product and get it running along with an app. One version comes with a programmable ARM-based microcontroller while the other offers Wi-Fi only. It reminds me of what Electric Imp is doing with its Wi-Fi modules, and may signal trouble for the startup, whose chips are inside popular products like Lockitron locks and the Rachio connected sprinklers.
Bringing everyday physical objects online is going to shake up the chip industry in a major way. There are new opportunities for startups and even Intel knows it has to change.
Like many of its chipmaking competitors, Texas Instruments is really stoked about the promise of connected devices. It all boils down to more chips sold. So TI has built out a partner program for the internet of things to help manufacturers link together devices and services from different companies. Participants in TI’s ecosystem include 2lemetry, ARM, Arrayent, Exosite, IBM, LogMeIn (Xively), Spark, and Thingsquare. Basically if a company buys TI chips they’ll work with software, hardware or cloud offerings from the above vendors.
The electronics inside today’s hottest connected devices are often custom and difficult to engineer because the big chip firms don’t offer the information entrepreneurs need. How can the industry fix this?
Sensors are everywhere, but if we can build a generation of more efficient energy-harvesting chips, sensors could go in even more places. Here’s how researchers are trying to make that happen.
We all should probably drink more water. I know that when I track my consumption, I’m barely getting 32 ounces, nowhere near the recommended amount. Sure there are bottles like this one, where you can just flick a counter mechanism to track consumption, or you can log it via an app, but I always forget. That’s why this Kickstarter for connected water bottle with an accelerometer and weight sensor caught my eye. At $70 this is pricey, but I love the automated water tracking. And hopefully over time, that price goes down.
Thingsquare, the company behind the lightweight Contiki OS for the internet of things has released development kits that let people build products that go directly online, without going through a hub first.
ZigBee is fighting for its place in the internet of things against Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Low Energy and Z-wave. It has to overcome fragmentation, sneak into user’s homes and keep Bluetooth at bay. Can it do all three?
Tags, tags, everywhere are tags. I can’t go two days without a new sensor tag product launching. But what’s behind this cornucopia of connected tags? Let me tell you.