Qualcomm continues it seemingly relentless charge to the top of the semiconductor vendor charts with another high profile acquisition. It aims to acquire UK based CSR for $2.5 billion, the deal still needs to go through the usual regulatory hurdles and be accepted by CSR but it certainly seems quite generous.
CSR has had its own fair share of acquisitions and sell offs in recent years, it bought Zoran in 2011 and sold its mobile division to Samsung in 2012.
Qualcomm has made some significant purchases to bolster its wireless connectivity prowess over recent years including its recent purchase of Wilocity, but CSR will be the most significant one since Qualcomm acquired Atheros in 2011 ($3.1 billion).
A successful purchase of CSR will put Qualcomm in an enviable position in the connectivity market and certainly see it become a force to reckon with in IoT.
Epson’s recently released range of Wellness bands have been added to the LWW database (see here, log in required).
Japanese based vendor Epson used the IFA event this week to showcase the new devices which includes both GPS sports watches (Runsense) and activity trackers (Pulsense).
Its Pulsense range of activity trackers all feature an integrated optical heart rate sensor and accelerometer, the PS-100x series is a simple band with LED indicators and the PS-500 features a monochrome LCD display.
Its Runsense range of sports and fitness smart watches are all GPS enabled and vary in price and feature set from the most basic SF-310G at approximately $200* up to the highest spec SF-810V with optical heart rate monitor (and more).
More information can be seen on the free to access database on the LivingWithoutWires.com website and more detailed specifications can be found at Sensian Research’s website (here).
- we haven’t seen $ amounts released yet so this an estimate based on GB£
The eagerly anticipated Moto 360 smartwatch goes on sale today (9/5) and it its specs are very impressive, some that stand out include:
- Wireless Charging
- Optical HRM
- Bluetooth Smart
- Stereo Mics
- TI OMAP AP
This device really looks like a good all rounder, providing much of the functionality that consumers are looking for in a companion smart watch. The smartwatch/band market is still developing and very fragmented but this could be a good solution for many. This has come a long way since the Moto ACTV (although we still believe this was well ahead of its time).
Motorola has a good chance of getting ahead of its competitors (again) as long as it puts lots of support behind it (users will remember how the Moto ACTV was discarded and will be wary it may happen again).
No doubt many will point to the possibly imminent arrival of an iWatch as the killer of any other smartwatch but I don’t agree. Yes, an iWatch will be successful, if not purely due to the Apple ecosystem but the Android ecosystem has grown significantly over the last few years and we believe there is a place for 3-4 main brands, with a few specialist suppliers on the fringes.
For the last few years start-ups have been the major innovators, now is the time for the incumbents to start to flex their muscles and take over the market as it starts to reach significant volumes. Watch (no pun intended) out for an uptick in mergers and acquisitions in this space as major consumer device manufactures start to gobble up smaller specialist suppliers in order to purchase interesting technology.
This market is just starting to heat up …….
One of the latest hardware campaigns to hit Indiegogo is FOBO TIRE. This is an after market TPMS (tyre pressure monitoring system) with a Bluetooth Smart connection so that you can easily check tyre (or tire) pressure using a smartphone app.
Photo from Indiegogo page
It is a really useful and interesting idea (one I remember writing about 2 years ago) and we wish the team behind it all the luck but it is disappointing that this device even needs to come to market in this way.
Why haven’t major OEMs already implemented a similar system? Is it because they have tended to stick to proprietary wireless solutions due to guaranteed robustness? Maybe it is a cost issue (moving to standardised connectivity technology can be a little more costly)? Could be many reasons. It is assumed however that we will see more Bluetooth enabled TPMS in the future and that OEMs will see the benefit of this, especially as Bluetooth Smart Ready infotainment units increase in number.
Being able to see tyre pressure whilst in the car is important but it would be much better to also to be able to see tyre pressure on a smart phone app before entering the vehicle.
Wearables and Beacons come together in a system to track the elderly and vulnerable in the home. CarePredict is soon to start shipping an activity monitor and beacon system that can continuously track a persons movements and vital signs and then transmit them via beacons/hubs situated around the home to a loved one or care professional.
Uses Bluetooth for communication between the 2 devices, Wi-Fi to send data to the cloud and then alerts, when needed, can be sent over a cellular network.