ARM forms industry group to support M2M development

Best known as the UK-based designer of the application processors used in most of the world’s mobile phones, ARM has invited a number of other UK technology specialists to establish a group aimed at fighting what it calls the “Internet of Silos”.

ARM says it wants to create a blueprint for how M2M technologies should work together to support the 50 billion devices that are forecast to be connected to the internet by 2020.

Best known as the UK-based designer of the application processors used in most of the world’s mobile phones, ARM has invited a number of other UK technology specialists to establish a group aimed at fighting what it calls the “Internet of Silos”.

ARM says it wants to create a blueprint for how M2M technologies should work together to support the 50 billion devices that are forecast to be connected to the internet by 2020.

ARM has already signed up EnLight, Neul, Alertme and AquaMW, which operate in various parts of the M2M industry, providing services like commercial infrastructure monitoring, energy-saving street lighting, home automation, energy monitoring and low-power radio technology for sensors.

The group says its aim is to help develop public policies and standards that ensure the ‘Internet of Things’ functions properly on a global scale, enjoying the confidence of consumers and businesses. Its first meeting is scheduled for late August.

IMS Research forecasts that shipments of M2M communications modules will hit 118 million units by 2016, with most activity happening in the automotive sector. Without the right kind of regulations, however, the market may struggle to realize its full potential.

“In the next five years, over £2.4 billion will be spent in the UK on smart home energy management devices, ranging from smart meters themselves to in-home devices that are connected to them,” says Gary Atkinson, director of embedded, ARM. “This is a great example of an Internet of Things application, but is only a fraction of the market that will open up over the next 15–20 years.”

Mr Atkinson says there are massive opportunities for the UK and the industry as a whole in the M2M market, but that a common approach to infrastructure and systems is needed. “The UK can lead this thinking and that’s why we are establishing a forum to create a blueprint for success. Working with innovative ARM partners, such as EnLight, Neul, Alertme and AquaMW, is a good place to start.”