U.S. regulators are investigating the safety of batteries used to power electric vehicles after a General Motors Co. (Detroit, Mich., U.S.A.) Chevrolet Volt caught fire following a routine crash test.
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said on Friday that it has asked other manufacturers who make electric cars or who plan to do so for information on how they handle lithium-ion batteries. The request also includes recommendations for minimizing fire risk.
In the future, remotely monitoring health conditions may not longer require a bulky connected device, but “Smart Skin.” MC10 Inc (Cambridge, Mass., U.S.A.), a company developing next-generation electronic systems, is working with the University of Illinois to develop smart skin, and epidermal electronic system containing transistors, sensors, receivers and transmitters that can be bent, stretched and wrinkled just like real skin.
Wyless (London, England) and Wireless Maingate (Stockholm, Sweden), two M2M MVNO's, announced a strategic partnership that will provide both companies will access to the others networks.
Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) last Monday announced that it has signed a strategic partnership with Quantenna Communications (Fremont, Calif., U.S.A.), a provider of Wi-Fi networking for home entertainment, including connected devices. Through the partnership, Telefonica looks to make a strategic equity investment in Quantenna, which will give it access to the latest Quantenna technology for the deployment of high performance video services to the home.
Telefonica will invest roughly $3 million in Quantenna, which brings the total investment up to $90 million to date, says Quantenna.
On Tuesday, Cinterion (Munich, Germany), a supplier of wireless modules for machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, announced the launch of a high-speed automotive M2M module with a triple-diversity antenna design. According to Cinterion, the AH3 delivers communications across global 2G and 3G cellular networks for applications such as, onboard vehicle computing, internet access, fleet management as well as automatic eCall and emergency roadside assistance and integrated hands free calling.
Iridium Communications Inc. (McLean, Va., U.S.A.) on Tuesday reported financial results for the third quarter of 2011 and raised its outlook for 2011. Iridium reported third-quarter total revenue of $102.1 million, which consisted of $69.4 million of service revenue and $32.8 million of equipment, engineering and support revenue. Total revenue grew 8% versus the comparable period of 2010, while service revenue increased 11% from the year-ago period.
Sierra Wireless (British Columbia, Canada) and Sprint (Overland Park, Kan., U.S.A.) last week announced they are collaborating to help application developers, product manufacturers, and machine-to-machine (M2M) service providers deploy new services. The two companies will co-market Sierra Wireless’ M2M Cloud Platform and Sierra Wireless will support Sprint modules pre-certified on its network.
U.S. smart metering company Sensus (Raleigh, N.C., U.S.A.) is exploring a potential sale of the company and has hired bankers to advise the company on a deal that could potentially cost up to $1 billion, people familiar with the matter said.
Privately held Sensus, which makes smart meters, software and communication systems for the electric, gas, and water industries, is preparing to launch a sale and is being advised by financial service company Credit Suisse (Zurich, Switzerland) on the process, these sources said.
The distribution arm of Italy's biggest utility, Enel (Rome, Italy), has started installing smart grids in Italy, part of its push to develop the technology needed to handle electricity flows from decentralized, fluctuating renewable power sources. Several thousand customers will take part in the $13.7 million pilot project in the southern region of Molise, Enel said in a statement.
The need to develop smart grid technology has been spurred by a rapid growth of renewable energy which is dependent on weather conditions and alternating of day and night.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and American Well (Boston, Mass., U.S.A.), a telehealth software company, on Friday announced an initiative to bring telehealth services to U.S. war veterans in their homes and workplaces. The initiative will use American Well's Online Care system to provide care for veterans, particularly those remotely located from VA medical centers, says American Well.