Germany’s decision on whether to mandate the introduction of smart grids could make or break the European industry, according to a new study from analyst firm Berg Insight.
Germany is the only major country in Western Europe that has not required utilities to introduce smart-grid technology, and take-up has consequently been disappointing.
Equipment maker Ericsson has struck important M2M deals with TeliaSonera and MegaFon, two of the world’s biggest operators, while saying the broader market for software and services is likely to generate a higher proportion of its revenues in future.
In the last few days, both operators have announced plans to use Ericsson’s M2M Device Connection Platform, which should make it easier for them to manage large numbers of subscriptions and provide more flexibility to M2M partners and customers.
A group of UK technology companies including semiconductor designer ARM and network operator Cable & Wireless Worldwide is looking for new partners as it ramps up efforts to create a communications standard for M2M services.
The companies have recently set up a special interest group (SIG) to accelerate the adoption of Weightless, a royalty-free and open standard that lets machines communicate with one another over TV white-space spectrum.
A UK delegation representing companies including British Gas, BT and Vodafone this week said a new smart-grid partnership with Taiwan could help to generate more than £13 billion ($20.8 billion) in economic benefits and £5 billion in smart-grid exports for the UK economy.
The UK Smart Grid mission has been visiting Taiwan this week to establish industry and academic links with the country.
General Motors has topped a new ranking of OEM safety and security telematics vendors, beating Ford into second place and Toyota into third.
The company’s OnStar solution was ranked number one in a Competitive Assessment carried out by ABI Research.
ABI scored General Motors (Detroit, USA) highly for the range of OnStar features as well as its market share, quality and reliability.
The market for smart grid technologies that help to integrate renewable energy sources is to generate just under $13 billion in 2018, up from only $3.8 billion in 2012, according to a new study from Pike Research.
Utilities and grid operators are investing millions of dollars in lowering the costs of integrating renewables generation, but these efforts have so far had mixed fortunes.
M2M vendor Numerex has reported impressive gains in third-quarter earnings and revenues due to rising demand for its subscription-based security, asset tracking and monitoring services.
The company claimed a 32% year-on-year increase in net profit, before the inclusion of income-tax benefits, to $987,000, while overall revenues grew 17% to about $17.7 million.
Inmarsat and SkyWave claim to have sold 12,000 of their IsatData Pro terminals – aimed at satisfying M2M needs in the transportation, oil and gas, utilities and mining sectors – so far this year.
The companies have designed the terminals to work on Inmarsat’s global L-band satellite network and say it is ideal for a wide range of enhanced M2M applications, including SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) communications for systems that monitor gas pipelines and oil wells, as well as telemetry and fleet-management services.
French technology group Sagemcom has acquired Germany smart-metering company Froschl for an undisclosed sum.
Sagemcom (Rueil-Malmaison, France), which sells terminals in the digital TV, energy and document-management sectors, claims the takeover will help it realize an ambition of becoming a major international player in the smart-meter market.
Froschl specializes in developing data-management software that will round out Sagemcom’s portfolio, according to the French company, and help it to win new business.
Vodafone has signed a multi-year global contract with Gemalto, under which the Dutch M2M company will help the telecoms operator to launch so-called ‘wave and pay’ contactless transactions via mobile phones.
Best known for its digital security products, Gemalto (Amsterdam, the Netherlands) will provide Vodafone (Newbury, UK) with its Trusted Service Management (TSM) platform, which manages mobile-payment security encryption between financial institutions and mobile operators, as well as its UpTeq NFC card product.