Telefonica forms smart wearables alliance with LG, Samsung, Sony Mobile

Spain’s Telefonica has announced a partnership with LG, Samsung and Sony Mobile to support the development of emerging smart wearables technology.

Under the agreement, announced at this week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) aims to integrate its services with smart wearables being developed by the three device makers.

Telefonica notes that it remains open to agreements with other market players, including manufacturers and content providers, aimed at ensuring devices are commercially successful.

Jasper Wireless unveils global SIM at MWC

M2M platform provider Jasper Wireless has launched a global SIM for M2M and IoT devices, allowing enterprises to manage and update mobile operator profiles and policies remotely.

The company said the SIM – announced at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow – would be integrated with its platform services and meet demand for more efficient and cost-effective M2M device activation.

Sierra Wireless, Tech Mahindra to provide end-to-end M2M

M2M player Sierra Wireless has teamed up with India’s Tech Mahindra to provide what they claim will be a fully managed service for M2M customers in the energy, transportation, industrial and healthcare sectors.

The partnership will make use of Sierra’s (Richmond, Canada) device-to-cloud offerings as well as Tech Mahindra’s system integration and application development expertise.

Exclusive: Google sets roadblocks to stop distracted driver legislation

Reuters

Google is lobbying officials in at least three U.S. states to stop proposed restrictions on driving with headsets such as Google Glass, marking some of the first clashes over the nascent wearable technology.

Some eight U.S. states are considering regulation of Google Glass, a tiny computer screen mounted in the corner of an eyeglass frame. Law enforcement and other groups are concerned that drivers wearing the devices will pay more attention to their email than the road, causing serious accidents.

Deutsche Telekom launches cloud-based M2M service for machinery operators

Deutsche Telekom is launching a new cloud-based service allowing companies to manage and monitor M2M devices with greater ease.

The service appears aimed primarily at helping machinery operators to track the performance of their equipment – allowing sensor data to be processed using ERP or other systems.

Lockheed Martin introduces tracking for munitions, sensitive assets

Lockheed Martin has introduced a wireless automatic identity technology allowing its customers to track munitions and other assets in harsh and sensitive environments.

The technology – developed in collaboration with Visible Assets – uses magnetic fields to track assets in locations that are unsuitable for traditional radio frequency technologies.

Samsung debuts wearables and latest Galaxy smartphone

Reuters

Samsung Electronics unveiled a new smartwatch and fitness band along with the latest version of its Galaxy smartphone on Monday, demonstrating how the battleground for innovation is shifting from the hand to the wrist.

The world's biggest smartphone maker set a trend less than six months ago for wearable devices that link to mobile handsets with its Galaxy Gear watch, which has seen rivals like Sony (Tokyo, Japan) and Huawei (Shenzhen, China) follow in its wake.

Sales of connected health devices growing strongly in Europe: GfK

Sales of mobile connected health devices – such as blood pressure monitors and personal weighing scales – are taking off in Europe, according to new data from GfK.

The market-research company said sales of mobile-connected blood pressure monitors in Britain, France, Germany and the Netherlands were 42% higher last year than in 2012.

Meanwhile, sales of connected personal weighing scales were up by 88%.

Telecom firms mine for gold in big data despite privacy concerns

Reuters

Last year's revelations over the U.S. tapping of phone and internet data gave telecoms firms pause for thought over whether they should sell their "big data" for gain, but the commercial potential could prove irresistible.

Although figures are scarce, analysts think selling data on mobile users' locations, movements, and web browsing habits may grow into a multi billion-dollar market for the business.

China outspending US on smart-grid technology: BNEF

China is now outspending the US on the installation of smart-grid technology, investing as much as $4.3 billion in 2013, according to new research from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).

Much of China’s spending last year went on the rollout of some 62 million smart meters, bringing the total number it has deployed to just less than 250 million.