IoT News Roundup

Samsung building LoRa network in South Korea; Intel acquiring computer-vision startup to bolster IoT capabilities; Virginia startup says it is bringing Nest-like controls to water heaters; Hitachi Insight Group merging public and private data sources for smart-city apps.
By Mary Catherine O'Connor
May 27, 2016

Samsung Building Countrywide Low-Power Wide-Area Network
Samsung Electronics this week announced that it has entered into an agreement with SK Telecom to deploy LoRa low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) nodes in South Korea—which, Samsung says, will become the world's first commercial network dedicated to enabling Internet of Things applications.

The network build-out is starting in the city of Daegu, which will serve as a testbed for applications related to the use of renewable energy, collecting air-pollution data, analytics applications in the health-care sector, and electric vehicle infrastructure for autonomous cars. The network is expected to be available throughout South Korea by the middle of the year, according to Samsung.

LoRa—a communications protocol developed by IBM, Semtech and other firms—leverages unlicensed, public spectrum called the Industrial Scientific and Medical (ISM) frequency band, to send small packets at low speed, but over long distances.

Intel to Purchase Computer-Vision Startup
Intel reported on Thursday that it is acquiring Itseez Inc., a San Francisco-based company that makes software used in a type of technology called computer vision, which enables a computer to process images and make real-time decisions based on what it sees.

Itseez' technology is currently used to power advanced driver-assistance platforms in vehicles—features such as lane-departure warning, traffic-sign detection, forward-collision warning and pedestrian detection. Its software is also used in facial-recognition and -detection systems, as well as in 3D scanning program. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

In a blog post about the purchase, Doug Davis, Intel's senior VP and general manager of the company's Internet of Things Group, wrote: "Itseez will become a key ingredient for Intel's Internet of Things Group (IOTG) roadmap, and will help Intel's customers create innovative deep-learning-based [computer vision] applications like autonomous driving, digital security and surveillance, and industrial inspection."

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