Interview: The pursuit of loyal chatbots

IoT News spoke with Alex Bunardzic, senior software developer at Staples, about the future of chatbots and the pursuit of their loyalty.

“People spend a lot of their online time chatting either through SMS, Messenger, or other channels,” says Bunardzic. “Previously, it was the trend that people were spending more time on social media and that’s where businesses were flocking to – you go where the market is. Now, businesses are realising the market is in the...

By Ryan Daws, 15 September 2017, 0 comments. Categories: AI.

FDA recalls almost half a million pacemakers over hacking concerns

The FDA has put out a recall for almost half a million pacemakers over fears they are vulnerable to being hacked.

In an episode of TV show Homeland, terrorists plotted to hack the vice president’s pacemaker. At the time some may have found the idea ludicrous, but now it’s a very real possibility faced by nearly half a million people.

The pacemakers affected are manufactured by health company Abbott (formerly St. Jude...

By Ryan Daws, 31 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Healthcare, IoT, Security, Wearables.

Almost half of motorists believe connected cars improve road safety – and new research backs it up

A study into the attitudes of motorists towards connected cars has revealed almost half now believe they improve road safety, and new research backs it up.

Over 2,000 motorists were surveyed for insurance provider Aviva’s recent Connected Car Report. 49 percent gave “safer roads” as a reason for wanting a vehicle with autonomous features. However, the same percentage (49%) also said they wouldn’t use a driverless car at this point in time.

“As with any new technology, there is...

By Ryan Daws, 29 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars.

Editorial: EU regulations put AI startups at risk of being left behind

European AI startups run the risk of being left behind due to strict EU regulations and misguided copyright reform. IoT News spoke to Peter Wright, solicitor and managing director of Digital Law UK, about the regulatory climate and why it puts European startups at a global disadvantage.

Regulations are important, but they must not stifle innovation and creativity. The EU has made a name for itself with regulations which run from the sensible to the completely absurd. Here in the UK,...

By Ryan Daws, 18 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: AI, IoT.

Homeland Security invests $750k to secure IoT disaster sensors

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced a $750k investment to develop a solution which bolsters the security of IoT disaster sensors.

Metronome Software, the beneficiary of the DHS’ award, is developing a technology which strengthens the security of IoT sensors. The aim is to ensure the sensors are not compromised in any regard and enable first responders to act quickly.

“Strengthening the security of first responder sensor networks is needed to protect data flows from attack by...

By Ryan Daws, 15 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: IoT, Smart Cities.

Government issues connected car guidelines to boost security

In a bid to prevent hacking, the government has issued guidelines to connected car manufacturers on improving cyber security.

The guidelines from the British government arrive following a series of vehicle hacks – including a Tesla last month. They have been issued due to concerns a malicious hacker could access travel information, unlock keyless entry systems, or even take control of vehicle...

By Ryan Daws, 07 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, IoT.

Tesla remotely hacked for the second year by the same researchers

Chinese security researchers have once again demonstrated the potential dangers of connected vehicles by remotely hacking a Tesla for the second consecutive year.

Malicious code was run on the Tesla-branded vehicle using the in-car web browser. Once exploited, the researchers were able to put on the brakes remotely, open the doors and trunk, and even blink the lights in time to music from the car’s stereo.

The researchers, from Keen Security Lab in Shanghai, were able to control the vehicle over both...

By Ryan Daws, 28 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, Security.

HERE utilises connected car data to ‘supercharge’ its Real-Time Traffic service

HERE technologies has announced its next-generation Real-Time Traffic service which utilises connected car data to improve the accuracy of traffic conditions.

Live data is fed into HERE’s service from sensors built into compatible Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz vehicles with traffic probe information. The company says the use of the sensor data provides ‘significant’ improvements to its traffic flow data, especially on arterial roads.

“This is the world’s first traffic service to...

By Ryan Daws, 27 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, Data & Analytics, IoT, Smart Cities.

UK announces plan to integrate IoT devices with the grid

The UK government has announced its plan to integrate IoT devices with the national grid to improve sustainability and reduce consumer energy costs.

By working alongside manufacturers, the UK government is aiming to create standards for a smarter and more flexible energy system. This could mean some devices are switched on when costs are at their lowest, and others switched off when the grid is under stress.

Examples include a smart washing machine which switches on when electricity is particularly cheap, or...

By Ryan Daws, 25 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: IoT, Smart Cities, Smart Homes.

Silicon Labs deploys the first Bluetooth Mesh solution for IoT developers

Just days after we reported on the announcement of Bluetooth Mesh, Silicon Labs has become the first to introduce a comprehensive suite of software and hardware which supports the new specification.

As we noted in our previous article, Bluetooth Mesh has all the right ingredients to enable Bluetooth to become a key wireless standard due to its low-power, ubiquitousness, and now with extended range. While it can be...

By Ryan Daws, 20 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Development, IoT, Smart Homes, Standards.

FBI posts a warning to parents about IoT gadgets

The FBI has posted a ‘consumer notice’ to consumers with children about the dangers of IoT gadgets.

Anyone who follows the computing industry will be aware of the dangers of insecure IoT devices. Some of the potential threats are external of the home, such as devices being hijacked to carry out attacks. Others can be internal and pose a danger to your family’s privacy, such as a hacked webcam.

The FBI makes the following recommendations:

  • Research for any known reported security issues online to include, but not limited to:

  • Only connect and use toys in environments with trusted and secured Wi-Fi Internet access

  • Research the toy’s Internet and device...

By Ryan Daws, 19 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: IoT, Security, Smart Homes.

Bluetooth ups its IoT cred with mesh networking

In the ongoing fight to become a dominant wireless standard for the IoT, an update to Bluetooth has provided mesh networking capabilities.

"By adding support for mesh networking, the Bluetooth member community is continuing a long history of focused innovation to help new, up-and-coming markets flourish," said Mark Powell, executive director for Bluetooth SIG, Inc. "In the same way the connected device market experienced rapid growth after the introduction of 

By Ryan Daws, 18 July 2017, 1 comment. Categories: IoT, Smart Cities, Smart Homes, Standards.

Nvidia powers the first Level 3 self-driving car – the Audi A8

Audi announced earlier this week its upcoming A8 will be the first vehicle in production to ship with ‘Level 3’ self-driving technology, and now we know Nvidia is helping to power a lot of the smarts behind it.

The A8 was unveiled last Tuesday and will include six Nvidia processors to power self-driving technology such as ‘traffic jam pilot’ as well as other, more standard features such as the infotainment system, virtual cockpit instruments, and tablets on the back of the front seat...

By Ryan Daws, 13 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, IoT.

Microsoft’s Seeing AI demonstrates how artificial intelligence can improve lives

Artificial intelligence can have a meaningful impact on improving the quality of life for some individuals, as demonstrated by Microsoft’s Seeing AI app.

Seeing AI uses artificial intelligence to recognise objects and faces. The results are then described to a user to help them understand the situation around them – which is particularly useful for those who are blind or have severely impaired vision.

The app, which released on iPhone today, has been previously demonstrated on multiple occasions including at...

By Ryan Daws, 12 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: IoT.

Nvidia and Baidu announce collaboration on AI in the car, home, and cloud

Nvidia and Chinese giant Baidu have announced plans to collaborate on AI technology for self-driving vehicles, cloud computing, and home assistants.

The announcement was made during Baidu's AI developer conference in Beijing. Baidu president and COO Qi Lu described his company's plans to work with NVIDIA to:

  • Bring next-generation NVIDIA® Volta™ GPUs to Baidu Cloud, providing cloud customers with the world's leading deep learning platform.

  • Adopt NVIDIA's DRIVE™ PX platform for Baidu's self-driving car initiative, and develop self-driving cars with major Chinese...

By Ryan Daws, 06 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, IoT, Smart Homes.

Alexa’s CV now features over 15,000 skills

Amazon’s digital assistant Alexa has surpassed 15,000 skills – up from 10,000 in February.

For users of Alexa-enabled devices like Amazon’s own popular Echo line – which currently includes the Echo speaker and Echo Dot, and will soon include the Echo Show – the vast number of new voice-powered apps has greatly expanded the assistant’s capabilities.

The 15,000 skills figure was reported by Voicebot following an analysis of skills available in the U.S. market and the...

By Ryan Daws, 05 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: IoT, Smart Homes.

Kangaroos are confusing Volvo’s self-driving technology

Meeting a kangaroo in the wild is not a likely occurrence for most of us, and it’s proving to be just as much of a shock to Volvo’s self-driving technology.

Volvo has been testing its self-driving technology in Australia since October 2015 but the unique way in which kangaroos move is confusing the “Large Animal Detection” feature.

Speaking to the Australian Broadcasting Corp, Volvo Australia’s technical manager, David Pickett, said: “We’ve noticed with the kangaroo...

By Ryan Daws, 03 July 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, IoT.

Oxbotica-powered CargoPod makes driverless Ocado deliveries

Ocado has demonstrated its vision for driverless grocery deliveries with a prototype van powered by Oxbotica’s driverless technology.

The vehicle spent two weeks on a two-mile circuit in a semi-pedestrianised area of Greenwich, south-east London to demonstrate the kind of environment Ocado believes its driverless vehicles will operate in once deployed.

CargoPod is an electric vehicle which helps to reduce its environmental impact. The vehicle’s top speed of 25 MPH makes it suitable for urban...

By Ryan Daws, 29 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, Smart Cities.

Volkswagen and NVIDIA embark on a journey to expand AI beyond the car

Car manufacturing giant Volkswagen is partnering with NVIDIA to harness their AI knowledge and use it for applications beyond in-car technology.

Volkswagen explores the possibilities for AI in their dedicated Munich-based Data Lab which opened back in 2014. One example of their current work involves new procedures for optimising the flow of traffic in cities where overpopulation and the need for individual vehicles is causing severe and increasing congestion on the roads.

"Artificial intelligence is the...

By Ryan Daws, 27 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Connected Cars, IoT, Smart Cities.