Items tagged with Internet of Things

In somewhat of a surprise announcement, Google is pulling in the reins of its Android Things platform and will now focus solely on smart speakers and smart displays, as opposed to the Internet of Things (IoT) category as a whole. The reason it is a bit of a surprise is because the IoT market is rather larger, and growing. Devices are getting smarter and more functional by the day, as a result of baking in Internet connectivity and related features. That is part of the reason why Samsung last year announced a $22 billion investment AI, 5G, automotive component ,and biopharmaceutical technologies. Samsung mentioned the IoT category as one of the areas that would benefit from its investment, and... Read more...
It does not seem all that farfetched that one day even your toaster will connect to the web and download crusty designs to sear into your bread. We have entered the Internet of Things (IoT) era. The focus on IoT devices can lead to some fun and interesting things (and of course useful), but also comes with added risk. To that end, security researchers warn of newly discovered vulnerabilities affecting one of the most popular IoT platforms out there. That platform is FreeRTOS, which is widely used in a range of IoT and embedded devices. FreeRTOS is a real-time operating system kernel with a small memory footprint and low overhead. It's also pretty fast and supported on a whole bunch of architectures,... Read more...
Smart speakers are growing in popularity, but in addition to providing a level of convenience to home consumers, they can potentially act as another point of entry for hackers and cyber criminals. To demonstrate this, researchers Wu Huiyu and Qian Wenxiang demonstrated at DefCon 2018 a technique for hacking Amazon's second-generation Echo speaker that allows an attacker to spy on the speaker's owner. The hackers spent month developing the technique. On the bright side, they have only managed to intercept the microphone rather than take complete control of the speaker, the latter of which could open the door to hacking an entire home network—speakers like the Echo tap into smart home devices,... Read more...
Google is rolling out a couple of new products aimed at helping customers build and deploy intelligent Internet of Things (IoT) devices at scale. One of those products is the Edge TPU (tensor processing unit), a tiny hardware chip designed to muscle through machine learning tasks in IoT gadgets, and the other is Cloud IoT Edge, a software stack that extends Google's Cloud AI to gateways and connected devices. Used together, Google's two new products enable customers to build and train machine learning models in the cloud, then run those models on the Cloud IoT Edge device through the power of the Edge TPU hardware accelerator. "By running on-device machine learning models, Cloud IoT Edge with... Read more...
Qualcomm has done well for itself in the smartphone space, as more often not, you will find that a noteworthy Android phone is running on the company's hardware, and specifically one of its Snapdragon chipsets. That is not Qualcomm's only focus, however. In a press release today, Qualcomm announced its new Vision Intelligence Platform with its first family of system-on-chips (SoCs) purpose-built for the growing Internet of Things (IoT) market. The new chips are built on an advanced 10-nanometer FinFET manufacturing process. They include the QCS605 and QCS603, both of which are engineered to deliver powerful computing capabilities for on-device camera processing and machine learning. According... Read more...
It should not surprise anyone that Samsung is planning to enter the smart speaker market with a product of its own, one that is powered by its Bixby digital assistant. Smart speakers are in high demand, thanks in large part to Amazon and what it has been able to do with its Alexa-powered Echo products. Others have followed suit, including Google, Microsoft, and Apple. Samsung will join the fray within the next few months. People briefed on Samsung's plans told Bloomberg that Samsung is aiming to launch a smart speaker powered by Bixby in the first half of 2018. Samsung will be going up against an increasingly crowded field of competitors, but that has not stopped the company from doing its own... Read more...
A security firm is warning of a new botnet targeting IoT (Internet of Things) devices that is on the move. Dubbed IoT_reaper, the new botnet borrows some of the source code from Mirai, which took down the popular security blog KrebsOnSecurity with a massive DDoS attack, ultimately forcing Brian Krebs, the security expert in charge of the blog, to find a new hosting company and seek shelter behind Google Shield for DDoS protection. Unfortunately, it is believed that this new strain called Reaper could be even more virulent than Mirai. Whereas Mirai was able to spread by cracking weak passwords on IoT devices that oftentimes were never changed from their defaults, Reaper looks for multiple vulnerabilities... Read more...
Most people do not think of a smart speaker being a potentially life saving gadget, but with the ability to dial up the police in emergencies, there is the potential for such items to serve as much more than just an entertainment gadget that can relay the weather and fire up playlists. That is the case for a woman and her daughter who were house-sitting in Tejaras, New Mexico last week. While house-sitting, an argument broke out between the woman and her boyfriend, Eduardo Barros, which turned physical, according to Deputy Felicia Romero, a spokesperson for the Bernalilo County Sheriff Department. The argument escalated to where Barros allegedly brandished a gun and threatened to kill his girlfriend.... Read more...
The fast growing Internet of Things (IoT) market has been a boon to the mini PC market, and the same can be said about the relatively recent maker movement. Plain and simple, geeks love to tinker. The affordable Raspberry Pi helped popularize the mini PC category by offering tinkerers cheap entry into the field, and because of that, we're seeing some interesting competitors emerge. One of them is the NanoPi Neo Plus2. The NanoPi Neo Plus2 is powerful and cheaper alternative to the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. It is available online for just $25, which is $10 less expensive than the Pi 3. Based on price along, you might think the NanoPi Neo Plus2 is a comparatively under powered mini PC or otherwise... Read more...
Smart home products are gaining in popularity, and companies like Amazon and Google want to the ones powering the experience. Here's the thing—if you're buying into Google's ecosystem, you might yourself with multiple devices, even in the same room. For example, you might buy a Google Home smart speaker for voice commands and a Google Wifi mesh router for Internet connectivity. They'll work together, buy why not combine them into a single product?That's exactly what Google is considering. A paywalled report in The Information has it on some kind of authority that Google is thinking about "a version of its Google Home intelligent speaker with built-in mesh Wi-Fi networking." This all-in-one solution... Read more...
Companies are embracing the smart home movement in a number of fun and creative ways. Thanks to smart home speakers and technologies, you can bark out commands to the cloud to do things like dim the lights, play music, look up the weather, and even order a pizza. Amazon hopped out in front of the trend with its Echo speaker and Alexa digital assistant, but here comes Google with its Google Home speaker. In a bid to be more competitive, Google has added a dozen new partners to its smart home initiative. These new home automation integrations introduced with the latest update add a wealth of functionality to Google Home powered by the company's Google Assistant. Here is a look at the list of players... Read more...
A full-blown Skynet situation might be the thing of science fiction (we hope, anyway), but that doesn't mean bizarre things involving machines can't happen. As proof of this, Verizon teased an entry in its upcoming 2017 Data Breach Digest that describes a recent DDoS attack on an unnamed university involving vending machines, light bulbs, and 5,000 Internet of Things (IoT) devices. As with many DDoS attacks involving IoT devices, this one is the result of system administrators being a little too lax with security on these seemingly benign devices. The university in question dismissed complaints from students across campus about slow or inaccessible network connectivity. When things took a turn... Read more...
Intel might be best known for its line of semiconductors (and rightfully so), but computer processors isn't the only category that it is investing in. The Santa Clara chipmaker has also jumped on board the fast growing Internet of Things (IoT) sector, a category that it sees as "nothing short of a revolution," and it's tapped Tom Lantzsch to lead the way. Lantzsch joins Intel's executive leadership team as the company's new senior vice president and general manager of the IoT Group. He's spent more than three decades serving Fortune 500 companies and early stage startup firms, including the last 10 years acting as executive vice president of strategy at ARM. "Here’s what we want you to know about... Read more...
Mobile chip maker Qualcomm has inked a definitive agreement to purchase NXP Semiconductors in a deal valued at around $47 billion. The board of directors of both companies gave unanimous approval for the acquisition, which will see Qualcomm buy all of NXP's stock at $110 per share, an 11.5 percent premium over NXP's closing price on Wednesday. Should the deal receive regulatory approval, Qualcomm will be in position to become a major player in the fast growing connected car market. NXP is a leading chip maker in the automotive industry with mixed-signal semiconductor solutions for in-vehicle infotainment, networking, and safety systems. The company's products are found in 14 of the top 15 infotainment... Read more...
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