17. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Qualcomm has announced that it’s to acquire Cambridge Silicon Radio (CSR) for approximately £1.6 billion (around $2.5 billion).

But what does this mean for us, the humble consumer? Well Qualcomm is heavily involved in the Internet of Things – connected devices and appliances to you and me – and its latest acquisition comes with some rather useful tech.

Steve Mollenkopf, chief executive officer of Qualcomm, said “The addition of CSR’s technology leadership in Bluetooth, Bluetooth Smart and audio processing will strengthen Qualcomm’s position in providing critical solutions that drive the rapid growth of the Internet of Everything, including business areas such as portable audio, automotive and wearable devices.”

via Qualcomm’s latest purchase will mean better connected devices for everyone | News | TechRadar.

17. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Xiaomi is a Chinese company most known for it affordable and yet well-built smartphones. In Asia, people are calling this company China’s Apple, which is a good fit I guess. Xiaomi’s hardware and software are often inspired by Apple’s products, or so it seems. Xiaomi Mi4 and Redmi 1S are probably company’s most known products. The former is Xiaomi’s 2014 flagship while the latter is an extremely affordable device which carries rather good specifications and design, this device is extremely popular in India where Xiaomi is selling it as part of “Flash Sales” via Indian retailer Flipkart.

via Xiaomi Unveiled Company’s Home Automation Devices In China | Androidheadlines.com.

17. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

The team behind Apple’s exclusivity in all things has done an amazing job of making it feel like whatever they OK is golden. Take August Smart Lock for example – a keyless entry system for your home that opens your door with your smartphone. Without Apple being involved, this is just another “startup.” Now that they’ve got approval to enter the Apple Store physically, they’ll be trusted implicitly. Once you’re in the store, people trust that Apple will back up any claim you make. It’s time for some Apple-backed home automation.

via August Smart Lock heads to Apple Stores officially – SlashGear.

Savant®, a smart home technology company, has announced the Savant App, which enable homeowners to control their HVAC, lighting, security, and entertainment systems from a single, easy-to-use app. Calling the technology the Single App Home©, the company said it offers a high level of personalization, so every user can tailor it to match the way they live and control it from their iOS or Android device.

“With the new Savant App, we’ve put powerful home control into the hands of consumers like never before,” said William Lynch, CEO, Savant Systems. “We call it the Single App Home, and whether it’s setting the perfect environment or being more efficient with climate, sprinklers, or other systems, owning a Savant Home gives people one, easy-to-use app that allows them to get more enjoyment and peace of mind from their home.”

via Oct. 8, 2014: Savant Introduces Home Automation App | 2014-10-08 | ACHRNEWS.

17. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Best Buy is rolling out home-automation departments to more than 400 stores this fall.

The “Connected Home” sections are expected to be in place by Thanksgiving and will feature more than 100 products from established vendors and startups.

The assortment will include security cameras and monitoring service from Dropcam; smart thermostats from Nest and Honeywell; smart lighting from Philips/Hue; smart locks from Kwikset; garage door accessories from Chamberlain; and wireless on-off switches from Belkin WeMo.

via Best Buy Adding Home-Automation Departments | http://www.twice.com.

17. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Apple has now finalized and published specifications for HomeKit through its Made-For-iPhone/iPad/iPod (MFi) licensing program. The finalized specifications, which allow accessory makers to start building products that integrate iOS 8’s new framework for home automation devices, come ahead of Apple’s yearly MFi summit in November where it plans to brief manufacturing partners on HomeKit and other new iOS 8 features for accessories.

There have already been a couple products announced with HomeKit integration, most of which are all from larger accessory makers and Apple’s early launch partners. The finalized spec for HomeKit, which was previously in beta mode, has only been available to all manufacturers through the MFi program since last week. Apple requires that companies building HomeKit-enabled hardware be part of the MFi licensing program and follow the guidelines in the newly published specs.

via Apple opens the door for HomeKit accessory makers w/ finalized MFi specs | 9to5Mac.

The small community of Glacier could be among the first in Western Washington to receive a battery storage system that could help cut back on lengthy power outages and test the viability of a “microgrid” in that area.

If a Puget Sound Energy project is permitted, crews could install four shipping containers housing lithium iron phosphate batteries at its existing Glacier substation at 9967 Vaughn Ave. as soon as summer 2015.

via GLACIER: Battery backup system in Glacier may help in power failures | Local News | The Bellingham Herald.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

The United States has more electrical grid blackouts than any other developed nation. According to the Department of Energy, demand for electricity has outpaced transmission rates by 25% every year since 1982. Federal data also shows that power outages lasting more than an hour have steadily increased in the last decade.

There are many risks with the current grid. A smart grid — a modernized, technical grid that uses renewable energy — has emerged as the attractive alternative for the future, but it will cost more than $300 billion to implement, according to some experts. The DoE promotes its master “smart grid” plan, but no one should expect a giant smart grid to appear any time soon.

via Microgrids: 5 things to know – TechRepublic.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , ,

Wärtsilä has secured a contract to supply a 56MW Smart Power Generation power plant to the Stillwater Utilities Authority (SUA) in Oklahoma, US.

The contract was signed in September 2014 and the equipment delivery will begin in November 2015.

The power station will be used to balance wind and solar generation in Oklahoma.

via Wärtsilä to supply 56MW smart power generation plant in US – Energy Business Review.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Remember the old beer commercial with the “tastes great….less filling” debate? Microgrids provoke a multitude of views in the USA.   For the Department of Energy, developing advanced microgrids holds the promise of building new electricity resources for customers, the community and the macrogrid. For the Department of Defense, microgrids deliver energy security for military bases and mobile operations. Massachusetts thinks of microgrids as enabling environments for regulatory reform. New York, in the midst of its initiative to redefine utility business models, considers microgrids as good platforms for distributed energy resources (DER). California, on the other hand, sees microgrids as crucial to supporting the integration of renewable generation into the grid.

via Microgrids and Policy Choice Innovation | The Energy Collective.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Atmel® Corporation (NASDAQ: ATML), a global leader in microcontroller (MCU) and touch technology solutions, today announced the company has expanded its Atmel | SMART portfolio of energy metering products with the introduction of the SAM4C32 dual-core secure MCU, along with the SAM4CMS32 and SAM4CMP32 for residential, commercial and industrial metering applications. The new system-on-chip (SoC) solutions have 2MB of cache-enabled dual-bank flash, are pin-pin compatible with existing 512KB and 1MB devices in the portfolio, and enable unparalleled scalability and design-reuse for next-generation smart metering platforms.

via Atmel Expands Metering Platform For Advanced Smart Energy Applications.

Scientists at Nanyang Technical University in Singapore have developed a lithium-ion battery that could be the best thing that’s happened to the electric vehicle market in a long time. At least it’s being billed as the “next big thing in battery technology,” according to a story in Phys.org.

The battery can be charged up to 70% in two minutes and will last much longer because it can handle over 10,000 charging cycles, far more than today’s batteries can tolerate.

via Smart Grid: Really? Breakthrough said to be the “next big thing” in battery technology.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

As today’s smart grid continues to advance with technological innovation, InStep Software will discuss the significant role of data historian software in a successful wide area measurement system (WAMS) at the upcoming Grid of the Future Symposium.

The symposium takes place Oct. 19–23 in Houston and provides a forum for participants to discuss state-of-the-art innovations, including smart grid technologies. The event theme is “Technology for the 21st Century Electric Utility” and is hosted by the CIGRE US National Committee and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). The conference is being held in conjunction with the North American SynchroPhasor Initiative work group meetings, giving members of both organizations the opportunity to share knowledge.

via Data Historian Software Key to Successful Synchrophasor Data Management for Improving Grid Reliability – PR.com.

16. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

New Bedford, Massachusetts, to hear Mayor Jon Mitchell tell it, wants to be more than just another medium-sized Northeast industrial city struggling to catch up in a post-industrial economy.

Mayor Jon Mitchell (left) with Council Chairman Jesse Berst

Known in the 19th as the epicenter of the whaling industry and today as the number one commercial fishing port in the nation, New Bedford is rebranding itself. In doing so, it’s carving a remarkable niche in the nation’s green economy.

via Smart Cities Council | “Cities can do these things!” New Bedford mayor tells smart cities forum.

15. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

ZTE Corporation (“ZTE”) (h share stock code 0763.hk/a share stock code:000063.SZ), a publicly-listed global provider of telecommunications equipment, network solutions and mobile devices, has signed an agreement with Enel, Italy’s largest power company and Europe’s second listed utility by installed capacity, for the development and deployment of innovative power generation technologies with a focus on environmental sustainability and improved distribution efficiency.

via ZTE Signs an Agreement with Enel to Focus on Sustainability – MarketWatch.

15. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , ,

Nearly 12 billion internet-connected devices will be in use worldwide by the end of 2014, according to the latest research from Strategy Analytics. That is equivalent to 1.7 devices for every person on the planet, a ratio which will rise to 4.3 by 2020, when 33 billion devices will be in use. The report, “Connected World: The Internet of Things and Connected Devices in 2020″, quantifies the scale of the connected device opportunity across the Internet of Things (IoT), smart home, smartphones, PCs, tablets, smart TVs, internet media devices and wearable devices.

via 33 Billion Internet Devices By 2020: Four Connected Devices for Every Person in… — BOSTON, Oct. 14, 2014 /PR Newswire UK/ –.

Solid Green Companies, a noted innovator in the building industry, today announced that it will provide standard home automation lifestyle packages in the new homes it is building. The announcement furthers its working relationship with Clare Controls, a manufacturer of high-performance automation solutions noted for offering scalable lifestyle automation solutions. The project is for Solid Green Companies’ new community, 1835 Village, in historic Gonzales, Texas.

via Solid Green Companies Meets Sustainability Mission with Home Automation.

15. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

Cisco Systems tackled head on the notion that some aspects of the much-hyped “Internet of Things” was indeed over-hyped, hosting a panel session at this week’s Internet of Things World Forum asking if the “smart grid bubble” was more hype or hope.

The panel, which was moderated by Cisco’s RJ Mahadev, who is business development lead for the company’s IoT services, seemed to conclude that the market was perhaps a bit of both.

Don Stucket, who is VP of technology at Canada’s BC Hydro, indicated that from his point of view as a public utility, “there is a lot of hype in some of the segments,” though what he termed “maturity” in others.

via Cisco IoT World Forum: Dissecting the hype, hope of smart grids – RCR Wireless News.

15. October 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: News · Tags: , , , ,

One of the top challenges facing electric utilities and grid operators over the coming decade will be how to integrate distributed energy, such as that produced by rooftop solar panels and wind turbines, into the electricity mix without compromising the steady flow of electrons to the end-users when and where they need them.

The exploding growth of such energy resources, called distributed generation (DG), has already become a central issue in states like California, Hawaii, New Jersey and even North Carolina, where solar and wind power represent ever-larger parts of the electricity mix.

via BUSINESS: Software aids grid operators struggling with the vagaries of renewable energy — Tuesday, October 14, 2014 — www.eenews.net.

The Thread Group announced that it has opened membership and will begin accepting applications from companies interested in using the Thread protocol in their products. The Thread Group was established in July by seven companies including Nest Labs, Samsung Electronics, Big Ass Fans, Yale Security, Silicon Labs, Freescale® Semiconductor, and ARM, to develop Thread, a new IP-based wireless mesh networking protocol designed specifically for the home.

via Oct. 14, 2014: Google-Backed Home Automation Group Accepting New Members | 2014-10-14 | ACHRNEWS.