Friday, February 26, 2016

CAP and NABL Accreditations for Strand Life Sciences’ NGS Laboratory

Strand Life Sciences, a global genomic profiling company aimed at empowering personalized cancer care and genetic testing for inherited diseases, announced that its Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) laboratory, the Strand Center for Genomics & Personalized Medicine, located at Bangalore, has recently received certificates of accreditation from the College of American Pathologists (CAP), and the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL), respectively. With these accreditations, Strand’s pioneering NGS laboratory is the first and only facility in India to receive both prestigious recognitions, signifying NGS testing at the highest quality standards in the country and neighboring geographical regions.

The CAP laboratory accreditation program is recognized by the U.S. federal government as equal-to or more-stringent-than the government’s own laboratory inspection programs. Similarly, the accreditation by NABL, the sole government-authorized laboratory accreditation body in India, is in accordance with ISO 15189:2012 standards. The accrediting processes by both organizations are designed to ensure that laboratories comply with the highest standards, and adhere to rigorous criteria for quality assurance. During the CAP accreditation process, inspectors examine the laboratory's quality system, quality control protocols and records for the preceding two years. Both programs pay very close attention to staff qualification, equipment, safety programs, and overall management of clinical laboratories.

This recognition by CAP and NABL accredits three of the most popular tests offered by the Strand Center laboratory. First, the StrandAdvantage 48-gene Test, used by medical oncologists to profile cancer patients for somatic mutations and personalize treatment by selecting targeted therapies. Second, the Strand Germline Cancer Test, an 86-gene hereditary cancer test to estimate inherited cancer risk, enabling early detection and prevention. Third, the Strand Rare Diseases Test, covering more than 500 genes and 400 rare inherited diseases, used for confirmation of diagnosis and carrier testing in couples.

Dr. Vijay Chandru, PhD, Executive Chairman, Strand Life Sciences, stated, “We are extremely proud to receive CAP and NABL accreditations. Receiving these accreditations is a major accomplishment, because it reaffirms our commitment to providing the highest quality of diagnostic testing and services to hospitals, physicians, and most importantly patients across the country. It is Strand’s goal to bring genomics-based precision medicine to routine clinical practice; hence the accreditations serve as an important milestone in that direction”. Dr. Chandru added, “We believe Strand’s NGS laboratory is the first and only CAP and NABL accredited laboratory in India. As the regional leader in this advanced field of multi-gene testing in genomic medicine, it is important for us to set the highest laboratory standards."

“It is imperative that physicians feel confident while sending patient samples for specialized and esoteric testing, such as NGS for cancer and rare inherited disorders. These diagnostic tests require advanced laboratories and expert personnel to analyze and interpret complex genetic information. Laboratories whose quality systems have been accredited by organizations such as CAP and NABL will give physicians much needed confidence to refer precious patient samples” said Dr. Nanda Rajaneesh, MBBS, MS, MRCS, FAMS, Consultant Surgical Oncologist, Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Bangalore.

Dr. Preveen Ramamoorthy, PhD, Global Head of Diagnostics, Strand Life Sciences, said, “Our NGS facility in Aurora, Colorado, is a Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) accredited laboratory. Now, the accreditation of our India facility by CAP and NABL (ISO 15189) validates our ability to perform high quality clinical NGS testing and perform bioinformatics and clinical interpretation to international quality standards in every facility that we operate.

New Era Begins for Five New Samsung's Air Conditioning Products at ACREX India 2016

Samsung India Electronics showcased five new products at ACREX India, South Asia’s Largest Exhibition & Conference on Heating, Refrigeration, Ventilation and Building Services. The products showcased are engineered to deliver exceptional cooling, increased efficiency and lower operating and maintenance costs.

The 5 new products include the new 360 Cassette AC, 30 HP Super DVM, 14 HP Side Discharge DVM Eco, FJM (Free Joint Multi) and DVM Chiller. These innovations in HVAC engineering will transform air conditioning by boosting energy efficiency and performance, minimizing environmental footprint, and increasing cooling speed.
Vipin Agrawal, Director, System AC Division, said “Samsung will continue to achieve positive growth for the air solution business by providing customers with innovative products and solutions that will help them discover endless possibilities. At Samsung, we’re focused and passionate about constantly evolving our technology. We believe in offering cost effective and energy efficient products and services to our customers. We are glad to partner with ACREX India 2016 and the products that we are showcasing today will offer the best user experience possible. ”

Samsung’s New 360 Cassette Design
Samsung’s new 360 Cassette comes with a unique and innovative design that transforms air flow and provides a uniform air cooling experience. The 360 Cassette provides powerful performance with elegant design which blends in and enhances every setting.  The revolutionary booster fan inside the cassette guides air to form a complete horizontal flow, generating layers of chilled air. The circular air wave consistently controls the temperature of the room by providing an even distribution of air in a full 360 direction.  The unit features a stylish and intuitive panel display that allows users easy control over air flow depending on the preference.

The air conditioner can be fitted within a ceiling or can be left exposed, offering multiple options to suit the interior style of any room.  In addition, users have the option of a wheel dial remote controller with a dedicated button for comfort cooling. The 360 Cassette AC also comes with an additional air filtration feature of Samsung Virus Doctor kit which can eliminate dust, airborne contaminants, allergens, bacteria and viruses.

The Next in High Performance VRF: Samsung 30HP Super DVM S
Samsung adds a boost to the performance and capabilities of the new Super Digital Variable Multi air conditioner which delivers enhanced performance, efficiency and reliability with cutting edge innovation. One of the revolutionary features that boost performance include the new Super Inverter Scroll Compressor with flash injection technology with an optimized bypass valve to increase capacity by 29 percent.

Other revolutionary performance boosting features include a Hybrid Heat Exchanger which increases the heat exchange area, an optimized refrigerant control that delivers an increased efficiency rate of 10% and a new oval-shaped diffuser application which increases the airflow rate by 17%. Samsung is dedicated to adhering to regulations that help preserve the environment. Aligned to this ideology, the Samsung 30 HP Super DVM S also complies with strict regulation thanks to an innovative leak detection system which automatically begins an active pump down process to collect the refrigerant and close all valves to isolate it within the unit.

The DVM S Eco 14HP: Samsung’s new side discharge VRF unit
The DVM S Eco 14HP is a new side discharge VRF air conditioner engineered to deliver a single outdoor unit solution for apartment and office buildings. The new VRF unit aims at meeting the growing need for a specialized outdoor unit that reduces the cost of multiple units being used in multi-room buildings. Innovative features in the DVM S Eco 14HP include the Inverter Scroll Compressor and corrugate fin that improves performance by 20 percent and increases air flow by 10 percent compared to standard side discharge VRF units. The increase in power that the DVM S Eco 14HP comes with means that a single outdoor unit is needed to manage the air conditioning for an apartment or office building, in place of multiple high-cost units. The new unit also provides better coverage due to an extended piping length of up to 160 meters and an installation height of up to 50 meters.

The Free Joint Multi : FJM
The new FJM is giving freedom of installing multiple indoor units with a single outdoor unit for a home or small commercial user. Samsung has engineered a twin rotary BLDC inverter compressor and FJM conveniently and effectively uses that to supply refrigerant to multiple indoor units. It thus offers greater energy efficiency and ease of use in an innovative compact design. The revolutionary FJM comes with a universal connection which makes it convenient to install even in remote areas. The world-class FJM has Sine Wave Controller that reduces noise significantly for in-the-home users. The FJM also reduces annual electricity costs up to 50% compared to conventional air conditioners.
Cutting Edge and Energy Efficient: DVM Chiller

The new DVM Chiller is energy efficient and packs immense power in a compact unit. Samsung has engineered an air-cooled chiller that offers greater energy efficiency and ease of use in an innovative compact design, following the tightening of EU regulations on F-Gas levels and the increased demand for a water-source HVAC. The revolutionary Chiller comes embedded with a world-class BLDC Inverter Scroll Compressor with Flash Injection technology that allows 75 percent of heating capacity at temperatures as low -20°C and greater energy efficiency. The Chiller also reduces annual utility costs by 36% to 50% compared to conventional chillers.

Vijay Mallya Resigns as United Spirits Chairman; Director of Royal Challengers Sports and Four Seasons Wines

In a sweetheart deal, flamboyant businessman Vijay Mallya today quit as Chairman of United Spirits after its new majority owner Diageo agreed to pay Rs 515 crore and absolve him of all liabilities over alleged financial lapses at the company founded by his family. He has also resigned from his position as a director of Royal Challengers Sports and Four Seasons Wines.

Mallya, who along with his group firms is fighting 'wilful defaulter' tags given by various lenders in relation to loans taken by long-defunct Kingfisher Airlines, said he would now "spend more time in England" closer to his children.

For son Sidhharth also, he has managed a sweetheart deal, with Diageo agreeing to retain him as Director of the USL Group firm that runs the RCB cricket team of IPL cricket tournament for at least two years.

Mallya himself has agreed to resign from boards of all USL group firms, including as Chairman and non-executive director of United Spirits Ltd (USL). He would become 'founder emeritus' of USL and Chief Mentor of RCB.

Announcing his resignation, Mallya said, "The time has now come for me to move on and end all the publicised allegations and uncertainties about my relationship with Diageo and USL.

"I am pleased to have been able to agree terms with Diageo and USL. The agreement we have reached secures my family legacy."

Giving details of the agreement, Diageo later said in a statement that Mallya will have no "personal liability" to the UK-based company in relation to the findings of the alleged financial irregularities at the company that had triggered an acrimonious fight between them.

These allegations, which surfaced after an internal inquiry, related to the period before Diageo acquired controlling stake in USL from the Mallya family in a multi- billion dollar deal.

Diageo said it has "agreed to pay US$75 million to Mallya in consideration for his resignation and termination of his appointment and governance rights and his relinquishing of the rights and benefits attached to his position as Chairman and non-executive director", among other factors.

Diageo said it will pay US$40 million of this amount immediately with the balance being payable in equal instalments over five years.

The payment is also for "his agreement to five-year global non-compete (excluding the UK), non-interference, non-solicitation and standstill undertakings, and his agreement that he and his affiliates will not pursue any claims against Diageo, USL and their affiliates"

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Indian Industry Welcomes IT Integration and Deployment of e-Services in Indian Railways

NASSCOM welcomes the technology focused initiatives that were announced as a part of Suresh Prabhu’s Railway Budget 2016. We are glad to note that the government is walking the talk on IT integration and deployment of e-services, to achieve the dream of Digital India. Aimed at showcasing a positive future for railways in India; the inclusion of GPS based digital displays in coaches, and the setting up Wi-Fi internet in 100 station this year, are initiatives that will not only streamline services in the railways, but also benefit customers across the board.  The minister has also announced the utilization of drones for remote monitoring of on-going projects, which is an imperative to ensure timely completion of projects. With the railways, ready to take the next leap in setting high speed rail networks, these announcements are testimony to the centre’s commitment towards the upgradation of services; giving the transportation lifeline of India its due.

Additionally, the setting aside of Rs.50 crore for providing innovation grants to employees, start-ups and businesses is an holistic and commendable approach towards scaling up the innovation and entrepreneurial landscape in the railway sector.

Anuj Puri, Chairman & Country Head, JLL India, says “The railway minister Suresh Prabhu’s announcement today on redevelopment of 400 stations through the private-public partnership (PPP) model is a very progressive and welcome move. This project will foster a plethora of large transit-oriented developments across the country, possibly resulting in the largest TOD undertaking in the world and thereby leading to higher transit ridership. This way, Indian Railways can efficiently monetize their land parcels, particularly in cities with higher densities, by commercially exploiting existing railway stations through sale of space rights over them. It will be great to see the arrival of more developments of the kind we see getting developed in Seawoods in Navi Mumbai and Karkardooma Metro station in Delhi.”

Konotor & PiQube Successfully Complete their Tenure at PayPal’s Start Tank at Chennai

PayPal, a global leader in online payments, today announced the graduation of the second batch of startups incubated at its Start Tank Incubation Center in Chennai, India. The two companies — Konotor and PiQube — started their incubation at Start Tank in November 2014. At their time of graduation, PiQube has raised $500,000 in funding from private investment company, HR Fund, while Konotor has recently announced its acquisition by software firm, Freshdesk. The occasion marks another milestone for Start Tank, which is located within PayPal’s Technology Center in Chennai.

PayPal’s Start Tank incubates early-age startups with the aim of enabling them to help revolutionize and drive innovation in the industry. The startups receive mentorship and infrastructure support from PayPal, as well as access to an extensive network of leaders from the industry, including The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Chennai, a not-for-profit organization committed to the cause of entrepreneurship.

“This graduation is another major step in our commitment to the development of a strong technology ecosystem in India. As one of the world’s largest startups, it is rewarding to see the startups incubated at Start Tank benefit from our mentorship and expand their teams and businesses during their incubation period. PiQube and Konotor have done extremely well over the past year, and we wish the two companies the very best in their entrepreneurial endeavors.” said Guru Bhat, General Manager, Chennai Technology Center, PayPal.

Graduating Startups:

Konotor, founded by Srikrishnan Ganesan, Vignesh Girishankar and Deepak Balasubramanyam, is a product of Demach Software India Private Limited. It enables messaging between businesses and their app users for customers support, promotions, re-engagement, and more. Konotor provides the businesses the right tools to manage customer conversations, as well as the ability to engage in a contextual and personal way with their app users.

“This tenure at PayPal has helped us with our growth as a product and a business. We were able to benefit from availing access to great infrastructure to support our business, consult with PayPal architects for technology guidance, and bring more structure to our organization growth and business metrics. We are extremely delighted about the fact that Konotor has recently been acquired by Freshdesk Inc, a leading cloud-based customer support software company,” said Srikrishnan Ganesan, Co-founder, Konotor. 

PiQube, founded by Jayadev Mahalingam, is a hiring intelligence platform that uses Data Science and Human Judgment in the right proportion to help companies hire smarter, swifter, simpler. The machine learning platform aggregates companies and recruitment agencies. PiQube raised $500,000 from The HR Fund during its incubation at Start Tank.

“Since our incubation at Start Tank in 2014, PiQube has grown leaps and bounds. In terms of manpower, the company has expanded from a five member team to a 25 member team in a span of 15 months. On the business front, we have grown from zero customers to 75 customers with a 20-fold growth in revenue. PayPal has helped build our company in such a short span of time and we are extremely thankful to PayPal for the mentorship they have provided at their Start Tank facility,” said Jayadev, Chief Problem Creator at PiQube.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Rectify Tax Duty this Budget 2016 to Generate Four Lakh Jobs in IT Manufacturing Sector, Says MAIT Chief

IT hardware sector can generate four lakh jobs over five years if the government rectifies the tax duty structure in the Budget to encourage manufacturing of products such as notebook and desktop personal computers in India, says a study by industry body MAIT. 

"Measures of the Union Budget 2016-17 can potentially generate 4,00,000 jobs in the Indian IT manufacturing sector if estimated demand for 30 million PCs per annum is fulfilled entirely through domestic production over the next five years," MAIT Executive Director Anwar Shirpurwala said while sharing details of the study. 

The total estimated jobs include 1 lakh direct employment and 3 lakh jobs in component manufacturing over the next five years, the study noted. 

Policy reforms and plugging market ecosystem gaps can lead to doubling of IT hardware production in one year to US$ 2.6 billion and make India become a global electronic system design and manufacturing (ESDM) supply hub, it added. 

The study is based on data from some members of the Manufacturers' Association for Information Technology (MAIT), which includes chip-maker Intel, PC maker Lenovo and software giant Microsoft. 

The IT hardware industry through the Manufacturers' Association for Information Technology (MAIT) has suggested to the government that the differential excise duty regime introduced in 2015 for mobile phones and tablets be extended to notebook PCs and desktop PCs (personal computers) to encourage domestic manufacturing of IT products. 

The differential duty regime requires the excise duty on notebook PCs and desktop PCs to be brought down to 2 per cent without any facility for input tax input tax credits. 

MAIT has sought exemption from excise duty for parts, components and sub-assemblies that go into manufacturing of PCs. 

The excise duty structure for mobile handsets was changed to 1 per cent without Cenvat credit, or 12.5 per cent with Cenvat credit, which gave domestic manufacturers cost benefit of about 11 per cent over imported phones. 

The current fiscal saw investments in India from the world's biggest contract manufacturer Foxconn while many others such as Gionee, Xiaomi, Lava, Karbonn, HTC, Datawind, started production of their handsets locally. The mobile phone production in the country shot up by over 90 per cent to 100 million smartphones a year. 

"Due to various disabilities impacting domestic manufacturers, a large part of this (India) market is being served by imported products, mostly from China," Shirpurwala noted. 

According to MAIT, the revenue share of domestic manufacturers stood at only 45 per cent of the total ESDM market of US$ 31.6 billion in 2015 and the figure was even lower at around 32 per cent for the IT product market of US$ 5.8 billion. 

The study made a case for steps to be taken by the government to provide competitive advantage for exports of IT products from India. 

It suggested that the government should take steps to attract component manufacturers, which would provide a base for global players to establish their presence and invest in India. 


US Based DigitalOcean to Invest $5 Million for Data Centre in Bangalore

DigitalOcean, a US-based developers’ cloud computing platform provider, has announced its plans to open its 12th data centre in India. 

With plans to launch the centre sometime in the second quarter of this year, the company plans an investment of $5 million for this year, which includes the setting up of the data centre. 

The company already has 58,000 registered users from India, including Flipkart, InMobi, KartRocket and, among others. 

“Cloud in India is being led by the startup community, unlike in the West, which is led by enterprise users. Our offering is most cost-effective starting at $5 per month for 512 MB, and going up to $640 per month for 640 GB,” said Karl Alomar, COO, DigitalOcean. 

“DigitalOcean has built the simplest infrastructure experience for developers. Besides, the pricing model is also straight-forward,” said Mitch Wainer, Co-Founder, DigitalOcean. Stating that the company is bullish on the startup community here, he said, “With 4.5 million developers and over 4,000 startups taking ground in India in 2015, we are confident about the market as the leading cohort of users are going to be the adopters.” 

The company will initiate operations in India with 5-10 people at its data centre, and is in talks with Tata, Reliance and Airtel for network contracts.

 DigitalOcean to open 12th new data centre in India, 
 It plans to invest $5 million over the year, including setting up of the centre  The company will initiate India operations with 5-10 people at its data centre.

India's First Electric Scooter S340 Comes With Smartphone & Touchscreen Dashboard Features

Ather Energy, a Bangalore-based hardware startup has launched India’s first electric smart scooter called S340. The S340 comes with a range of up to 60 kilometres in one single charge. The company claims its Lithium Ion battery pack is IP67 rated and offers an uncompromised ride for 50,000 kms.

“The future will be connected and inevitably electric and the Ather S340 has been built as a manifestation of this philosophy. It is an unapologetically electric vehicle, it has been designed and built mostly in-house with engineering precision,” said Tarun Mehta, CEO & Co-Founder of Ather Energy.

He further added, “The automobile industry is in the midst of a huge technological disruption. The technology of electric vehicle has advanced in leaps and bounds. It is the preferred choice because of its inherent efficiency that will shape urban commute and the smart cities of tomorrow.”

The S340 is not just electric but also adds few smart connected elements to it. It comes with a touch-enabled dashboard which integrates cloud-based to personalise the consumer’s driving experience. It also embeds user profile based sign in like smartphones and has on-board navigation.

Ather Energy S340 also has driving modes like sport and economy very much like sports utility vehicles and premium sedans. The company has also developed its own S340 Mobile App which connects the rider with the vehicle and allows for remote syncing and configuring ride and profile preferences.

Ather Energy has a manufacturing unit set up in Whitefield, Bangalore and it believes the S340 will be a showcase for a Made in India product. Ather Energy also plans to sell the product online with doorstep delivery and service. The company has started pre-order for the smart scooter in Bangalore, Chennai and Pune. The company just doesn’t want to stop with the scooter, it wants to build an ambitious public charging infrastructure in every city that it operates in.

Haryana Holds Roadshow in Bangalore for Global Investors’ Summit-2016 in Gurgaon


In order to attract investment in Haryana state has decided to organize a first of a kind “Happening Haryana Global Investors’ Summit-2016” from March 7-8, 2016 at Gurgaon. Haryana government held a roadshow at the Taj West End, Bangalore on February 23, 2016.

On Tuesday, the Haryana government led by Vivek Atray, Director Industries and Commerce, Government of Haryana; Sudhir Rajpal, Managing Director HSIIDC and industrialists Dinesh Batra, Director and Group CEO, Cygnus Hospitals and Sameer Munjal, MD, Satyam Auto Components also highlighted developments in farvour of Haryana to attract more investments from Karnataka at the Taj West End in Bangalore. 
As the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is the national partner for the event, T Sudhakar Pai, Past Chairman, CII Karnataka and MD Kurlon Enterprises along with Ravi Raghavan, CEO, Bharat Fritz Werner were present from the CII side.
Haryana is looking at IT/ITeS companies from Karnataka, as Bangalore is well known as India’s IT city and off late attracting large MNC’s and billions of dollars in revenue. Sudhir Rajpal said likewise to Bangalore, even Haryana has IT Parks in Chandigarh, Faridabad and Rohtak and are now looking at expanding the parks and also enter into ESDM for cell phone manufacturers. The state government has set up plug and play facilities for startups and is also offering reduction in VAT, Stamp duty among others benefits. “No tax for startups till their turnover touches Rs 10 lakh.”
The two day event which is going to held on March 7 and 8 at Leela Hotel is expected to witness a large gathering of various international and national companies in the millennium city . Alongside the summit Pravasi Haryana Divas is also being organized to target investments of the entrepreneurs from the state, who have set shop abroad.  
As a preview the state is organizing five road shows across the country the first one was held in Delhi the second is in Kolkata which will be held on January 29 to create awareness among the people. The list of road shows includes Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
Alongside the summit Pravasi Haryana Divas is also being organized to attract investments from entrepreneurs from the state, who have set shop abroad.  
The Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar accompanied by Industries Minister, Captain Abhimanyu met the CEOs and heads of various companies in one on one meetings held during the first road show in Delhi.
The Khattar government has offered Coca Cola India, for setting up ‘Kinnow’ juice plant at Food Park in Saha, Ambala. The organizers of the event have also informed that there was a discussion with chief minister of setting up a skill development project, in Gurgaon by Ascendas Singbridge Group.
Micromax, has also offered to set up a manufacturing unit in National Capital Region which is expected to provide employment to 5,500 youth with initial investment ranging from Rs 100 crore to Rs 500 crore. The state is also set to get an ‘Electronic Manufacturing Special Zone’ in Rohtak over an area of 100 acres of land.

LeEco & Akshaya Patra Partner for Providing Midday Meal to Childrens’

In a gesture befitting a socially conscious corporate, LeEco, the internet and technology conglomerate joins hands with Akshaya Patra to support a mid-day meal for two children for every Le Superphone sold  (Le 1s and Le Max)  on LeEco Day on Feb 25, 2016.  The initiative is part of a program that helps Akshaya Patra feed over a million children, who have the zeal to learn and the potential to contribute to India’s social and economic development.

LeEco, which recently entered the Indian market has become consumers’ favourite brand in a short span of time. Having created a flurry of industry records with its Le Superphones, the corporate’s LeEco Day with its bounty of benefits and offers worth Rs. 8 crores, is touted as one of the largest and most attractive shopping carnivals organized by a smartphone brand. In a highly laudable gesture, the corporate has chosen to return in some measure the love and appreciation LeEco has received from Indian consumers by supporting the well known Akshaya Patra mid-day meal initiative. 

Commenting on this initiative, Mr. Atul Jain, COO Smart Electronics Business, LeEco said, “LeEco’s core values as a company includes associating ourselves with social causes that help sustainable development of the communities where we operate. We are proud to associate ourselves with Akshaya Patra Foundation that supports children and provides a basic necessity that helps them in their schooling.  We are also pleased to add that employees of LeEco have volunteered to be part of this meal initiative. The mission of The Akshaya Patra Foundation is to reach 5 million children by 2020 and we hope to continue our association to help them cross this goal.”

LeEco Day is marked by several unique initiatives. The senior management of the company plans to personally undertake the delivery of the Superphones to first few customers across the 4 cities of – Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad. This is being planned as part of LeEco’s consumer-connect policy which has been integral to the unprecedented success the company has had in such a short period in the Indian market.

Also noteworthy is the company's after-sales policies. LeEco has put in place 555 service centers in prime locations in the country, besides providing 24*7 toll free services, and other value-added services.

Top 10 Internet of Things Technologies for 2017 and 2018: Gartner

Gartner, Inc. has highlighted the top 10 Internet of Things (IoT) technologies that should be on every organization's radar through the next two years.

"The IoT demands an extensive range of new technologies and skills that many organizations have yet to master," said Nick Jones, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "A recurring theme in the IoT space is the immaturity of technologies and services and of the vendors providing them. Architecting for this immaturity and managing the risk it creates will be a key challenge for organizations exploiting the IoT. In many technology areas, lack of skills will also pose significant challenges."

The technologies and principles of IoT will have a very broad impact on organizations, affecting business strategy, risk management and a wide range of technical areas such as architecture and network design. The top 10 IoT technologies for 2017 and 2018 are:

IoT Security
The IoT introduces a wide range of new security risks and challenges to the IoT devices themselves, their platforms and operating systems, their communications, and even the systems to which they're connected. Security technologies will be required to protect IoT devices and platforms from both information attacks and physical tampering, to encrypt their communications, and to address new challenges such as impersonating "things" or denial-of-sleep attacks that drain batteries. IoT security will be complicated by the fact that many "things" use simple processors and operating systems that may not support sophisticated security approaches.

"Experienced IoT security specialists are scarce, and security solutions are currently fragmented and involve multiple vendors," said Mr. Jones. "New threats will emerge through 2021 as hackers find new ways to attack IoT devices and protocols, so long-lived "things" may need updatable hardware and software to adapt during their life span."

IoT Analytics
IoT business models will exploit the information collected by "things" in many ways — for example, to understand customer behavior, to deliver services, to improve products, and to identify and intercept business moments. However, IoT demands new analytic approaches. New analytic tools and algorithms are needed now, but as data volumes increase through 2021, the needs of the IoT may diverge further from traditional analytics.

IoT Device (Thing) Management
Long-lived nontrivial "things" will require management and monitoring. This includes device monitoring, firmware and software updates, diagnostics, crash analysis and reporting, physical management, and security management. The IoT also brings new problems of scale to the management task. Tools must be capable of managing and monitoring thousands and perhaps even millions of devices.

Low-Power, Short-Range IoT Networks
Selecting a wireless network for an IoT device involves balancing many conflicting requirements, such as range, battery life, bandwidth, density, endpoint cost and operational cost. Low-power, short-range networks will dominate wireless IoT connectivity through 2025, far outnumbering connections using wide-area IoT networks. However, commercial and technical trade-offs mean that many solutions will coexist, with no single dominant winner and clusters emerging around certain technologies, applications and vendor ecosystems.

Low-Power, Wide-Area Networks
Traditional cellular networks don't deliver a good combination of technical features and operational cost for those IoT applications that need wide-area coverage combined with relatively low bandwidth, good battery life, low hardware and operating cost, and high connection density. The long-term goal of a wide-area IoT network is to deliver data rates from hundreds of bits per second (bps) to tens of kilobits per second (kbps) with nationwide coverage, a battery life of up to 10 years, an endpoint hardware cost of around $5, and support for hundreds of thousands of devices connected to a base station or its equivalent. The first low-power wide-area networks (LPWANs) were based on proprietary technologies, but in the long term emerging standards such as Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) will likely dominate this space.

IoT Processors
The processors and architectures used by IoT devices define many of their capabilities, such as whether they are capable of strong security and encryption, power consumption, whether they are sophisticated enough to support an operating system, updatable firmware, and embedded device management agents. As with all hardware design, there are complex trade-offs between features, hardware cost, software cost, software upgradability and so on. As a result, understanding the implications of processor choices will demand deep technical skills.

IoT Operating Systems
Traditional operating systems (OSs) such as Windows and iOS were not designed for IoT applications. They consume too much power, need fast processors, and in some cases, lack features such as guaranteed real-time response. They also have too large a memory footprint for small devices and may not support the chips that IoT developers use. Consequently, a wide range of IoT-specific operating systems has been developed to suit many different hardware footprints and feature needs.

Event Stream Processing
Some IoT applications will generate extremely high data rates that must be analyzed in real time. Systems creating tens of thousands of events per second are common, and millions of events per second can occur in some telecom and telemetry situations. To address such requirements, distributed stream computing platforms (DSCPs) have emerged. They typically use parallel architectures to process very high-rate data streams to perform tasks such as real-time analytics and pattern identification.

IoT Platforms
IoT platforms bundle many of the infrastructure components of an IoT system into a single product. The services provided by such platforms fall into three main categories: (1) low-level device control and operations such as communications, device monitoring and management, security, and firmware updates; (2) IoT data acquisition, transformation and management; and (3) IoT application development, including event-driven logic, application programming, visualization, analytics and adapters to connect to enterprise systems.

IoT Standards and Ecosystems
Although ecosystems and standards aren't precisely technologies, most eventually materialize as application programming interfaces (APIs). Standards and their associated APIs will be essential because IoT devices will need to interoperate and communicate, and many IoT business models will rely on sharing data between multiple devices and organizations.

Many IoT ecosystems will emerge, and commercial and technical battles between these ecosystems will dominate areas such as the smart home, the smart city and healthcare. Organizations creating products may have to develop variants to support multiple standards or ecosystems and be prepared to update products during their life span as the standards evolve and new standards and related APIs emerge.