IoT & Embedded Technology Blog

Target’s Data Breach: A Wake Up Call For Retail POS Systems Vendors and Customers

by Steve Hoffenberg | 12/19/2013

By now, everyone has seen the news that Target Stores suffered a massive credit and debit card data breach, as acknowledged by the retailer. The company says that more than 40 million card accounts may have been affected through card swipes at its brick-and-mortar stores between November 27 and December 15. [Target later revised the number of affected customers upward to 110 million.] Read more

Real-time Analysis Accelerating Hadoop Market Opportunities

by Daniel Mandell | 12/18/2013

In the big data environment, Hadoop is the fast-growing open source batch processing system emerging as the popular choice for companies handling large volumes of multi-structured data. Hadoop excels with its distributed processing framework, and is primarily used for extracting, storing, and processing both structured and unstructured data. However, Hadoop’s downfall is its inability to produce real-time analysis. Typically, once Hadoop has processed the data, the data is then moved into SQL-based environments for real-time analysis. The major disadvantage of this system architecture is the increased costs when data is pushed to SQL-based engines. Read more

Cross-domain integration: the new look of engineering

by Andre Girard | 12/12/2013

The benefits of enhanced integration and collaboration between different engineering disciplines are undeniable. A cross-domain integration approach is becoming more important and beneficial as products become more complex. To ensure that products function properly, it is imperative that developers understand how the software, electrical, and mechanical components work together. Using cross-domain integration, product developers are more efficient while also addressing the concerns of both managers and end users, helping ensure that the product is the best it can be. Read more

The AllJoyn Protocol: Does Its Openness Compromise Security?

by Steve Hoffenberg | 12/10/2013

On December 10, the Linux Foundation announced the formation of the AllSeen Alliance, an industry consortium that seeks to expand the Internet of Things in home and industry. Premier members include: Haier, LG Electronics, Panasonic, Qualcomm, Sharp, Silicon Image and TP-LINK, with more than a dozen additional community member companies. Read more

The 64-bit Processor Bandwagon

by Daniel Mandell | 12/05/2013

Shortly after Apple announced its iPhone 5s would feature a 64-bit processor, Samsung quickly followed that it was also developing a 64-bit processor for mobile devices. Other major companies have since announced their intentions to release 64-bit mobile processors in the near future too; reports rumor that Broadcom, NVIDIA, and Qualcomm could unveil their new processors as early as January at CES 2014. This led us to ask, how much real value does a 64-bit processor currently bring to mobile products? Read more

The Foibles of Fingerprints

by Steve Hoffenberg | 11/29/2013

When Apple announced the iPhone 5s in September 2013, much of the popular press hailed the device’s inclusion of fingerprint sensing (dubbed Touch ID) as a major breakthrough in mobile security. The more astute journalists pointed out that Motorola had brought to market fingerprint scanning in the Atrix 4G handset back in February 2011, more than two and a half years earlier. As an owner of the Atrix 4G since its early days, I can provide some insight into the real-world ups and downs of using a fingerprint scanner on a daily basis, although the proliferation of fingerprint devices presents greater security concerns. Read more

Android to Transform Medical Device Market

by Chris Rommel | 10/24/2013

In an increasingly mobile environment infused with continual technological innovation, OEMs are considering new platforms to develop embedded systems. While there are various platforms to choose from, Android has emerged as the foundation of many new embedded systems. It boasts natural advantages compared to other operating systems – iOS, Blackberry, and Windows to name a few – such as its robust open source user-interface, integrated connectivity, and royalty-free licensing, which can minimize cost and provide OEMs flexibility as they try to fit technology to specific industry needs.  Read more

Outsourced Code Development Driving Automated Test Tool Market

by Andre Girard | 10/22/2013

The M2M embedded software team here at VDC Research just published a new report, 2013 Automated Test & Verification Tools (ATVT), volume 3 of our Software & System Lifecycle Management Tools intelligence service. The report looks into the most critical trends and market drivers impacting the rapidly evolving use of dynamic test and static analysis tools in the embedded and enterprise/IT markets. We expect revenues for several product segments within ATVT to expand at a double digit growth rate over the next several years, fueled by a number of factors. Read more

Winning Big With M2M – Pamplona Capital Management Increases its Stake

by Daniel Mandell | 10/16/2013

Yesterday, Mac-Grey was acquired by CSC ServiceWorks for a 41% premium over Monday’s share price. This is interesting to us because of the M2M element. The newly combined entity represents a perfect example of what can happen when things coin-operated or otherwise are connected to the cloud. Mac-Grey provides M2M enabled commercial laundry products and services. For example, if you owned an apartment building and wished to provide an on-premises laundry room, you might contract with Mac-Grey to provide that service. Read more

Will the US Government Shutdown Impact the Embedded Computing Market?

The answer is yes and depending on the length of the disruption, the impact will be significant. Decisions on new US aerospace and defense projects will be on hold but the effects of these delays will be minimal as these decisions only impact embedded computer supplier revenues 3 or more years in the future. What will be significant are the numerous small impacts over multiple markets which will tend to move embedded computer supplier revenues that would have been recorded in 4Q/2013 to 1Q/2014. Read more

The Great Divide: Growing Armies for High-end Server Applications

by Daniel Mandell | 09/30/2013

Several recent reports stemming from the keynote at least week’s JavaOne conference indicate that IBM is working towards enabling GPU acceleration with Java, one of the most popular programming languages used in software development. This shortly follows the establishment of the OpenPOWER Consortium, an open development alliance based on IBM’s Power architecture, in which an announcement was made that IBM and Nvidia will work together to integrate the Power and CUDA GPU ecosystems. Read more

Keep Calm and Carry On, Discrete DSPs

by Daniel Mandell | 09/29/2013

Processor technologies are undeniably moving towards consolidated, integrated architectures to take advantage of multiple processor types in tandem while saving on size and power consumption. While such heterogeneous ICs are changing the way chipsets are developed, licensed (core IP), and manufactured, not all applications need or necessarily want them. High-performance remains the chief metric by which end users select embedded processors, particularly for those using digital signal processors (DSPs). As a result, intensifying application requirements will preserve the market for discrete DSPs in a world increasingly prevalent with holistic system on chips (SoCs). Read more

It’s Back to School for Ada!

When it comes to embedded programming, Ada does not get a ton of attention – especially when compared to increasingly popular languages such as Java or C++. However, Ada is extremely effective for the safety-critical markets in which it plays, and its use has remained steady over the years. With Java and other languages’ continued rise in popularity – a trend driven in large part by younger engineers joining the workforce – Ada had been considered by some to be an antiquated language used by an aging segment of the engineering population. The release of Ada 2012 late last year began to turn the tide in the other direction. Read more

BlackBerry reaches preliminary buyout deal; what’s next for QNX?

Earlier today, in an announcement that probably surprised no one, BlackBerry revealed that it had reached a preliminary, $4.7 billion deal to be acquired by a consortium led by Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited. Fairfax already owns approximately 10% of the company, and would likely take the company private upon completion of the deal. Read more

Intel’s Sub-Atom Quark is a Big Opportunity

by Daniel Mandell | 09/12/2013

Intel finally announced earlier this week its answer for branching into true low-power embedded applications – the Quark SoC. Quark is Intel's first product for low-cost, small form-factor embedded markets, which often prioritize power consumption and footprint over performance. Though Intel faces tough competition in the embedded space from a variety of players, the growing opportunity generated by the pervasive Internet of Things will be large enough for Intel to carve additional share outside traditional PC and enterprise-computing markets.  Read more

Microsoft, Nokia, Qualcomm and Samsung Announcements will Enable New M2M Products and Applications

First of all, Microsoft announced this week that they would acquire Nokia’s devices and service business. This is an excellent example of what we expect will continue to happen in the M2M and embedded ecosystem. In this case, a larger, more highly capitalized supplier is able to integrate elements of mobile device solutions. This acquisition will allow the combined entity to gain market share that would not otherwise have been practical from a business perspective. For example, Microsoft will be far more capable of making strategic purchases of materials or R&D investments to create new, more competitive mobile and M2M products than Nokia would have been by itself.  Read more

Volatile Spectrum: A Moving Threat and Opportunity

by Daniel Mandell | 08/30/2013

The proliferation of connected devices has stretched wireless wavelengths to physical limits. Several networking protocols such as 3G, 4G LTE, WiFi, WiMax, and Zigbee all compete for wireless spectrum across the world to connect a near-endless array of industry devices and applications. New spectrum cannot be created, and crowded networks hinder not only backend communications and networking infrastructures, but can also negatively impact end user experiences with respect to coverage, quality, and reliability. The redistribution of wireless spectrum to accommodate the increasing number of internet-connected devices will profoundly impact embedded designs in a variety of ways. OEMs and system designers must continually reevaluate embedded networking hardware to maximize application efficiency at the lowest cost. Read more

3D Printing Will Impact Embedded Computing? VDC’s View of the Future

Technologies are evolving quickly in 3D printing and new nano-materials. Will these new technologies impact the market for embedded computing products? We believe the answer is, yes, but, not immediately. The 3D printing process is too slow for the production volumes needed for many if not most products that contain embedded computing. The first embedded market impact of new 3D and nano technologies will be on the engineering processes that create products not the products themselves. Read more

A Turbo Shot of Java

Just as language use around the world constantly changes as time goes on, change is coming to the programming language sphere. A new era is coming in the world of computer programming, and in the embedded field, the old standards are falling to the wayside. Gone are the days of Assembly and C and here come the object-oriented C# and Java. Read more

Trusteer Your Security to IBM: Acquisition Fortifies Security Portfolio

by Andre Girard | 08/19/2013

On August 15th, IBM (NYSE:IBM) announced it reached a deal to acquire Trusteer, a Boston-based software-security firm focusing on financial and enterprise cyberthreats. As part of the deal, IBM will absorb Trusteer’s R&D lab in Tel Aviv into its security organization. One major focal point for Trusteer is their mobile security product line, which focuses on preventing intrusion and data theft through enterprise-connected mobile devices. Read more

Groundbreaking Coverage of Connected Systems Security Market

VDC’s M2M Embedded Software & Tools Practice is pleased to announce the launch of the second edition of a groundbreaking research program that deeply explores the topic of security and the connected world. Building upon our existing coverage of Security & The Internet of Things, this research will sort out hype from reality and help vendors, OEMs, and IT professionals alike understand exactly what is needed to secure next-generation connected systems. We recognize that there is an enormous amount of industry buzz around security, The Internet of Things, and connected systems.  Read more

Sometimes Less Can Be More - A Lot More!

As you may recall, AMD won VDC’s Hardware Embeddy for the new G-Series SoC processors. The G-Series line of these processors continues to expand and this week provides another example of the broadening of that line to address lower TDP applications. With a maximum Thermal Design Power (TDP) of only 6 Watts the GX-210JA SoC formally announced this morning consumes a third less power than what was, until today, the lowest power G-Series member. On average, and depending on the application, AMD projects the new product will exhibit 3 Watts TDP.  Read more

The Embedded Software Beat - Part 2 with VASCO

Last week we introduced you to VASCO, a leading supplier of strong authentication and e-signature solutions and services specializing in Internet Security applications and transactions. In the second part of this interview, we ask Mr. Valcke to assess the market for embedded authentication solutions.

VDC: Can you talk about your embedded activities?

Valcke: Embedded DIGIPASS allows customers to deploy two-factor authentication without the need to roll-out authentication hardware to the end user. By the end of 2014 VASCO will have over one billion dormant DIGIPASS in the market. This means that over one billion devices will have a DIGIPASS embedded that can be easily activated to deploy two-factor authentication. Read more

The Embedded Software Beat - Part 1 with VASCO

This interview is the latest in an ongoing series we conduct with embedded software solution providers to share views on their company, products, and state of the market.

VDC: VASCO has been in the authentication business for over 20 years; can you briefly introduce the company to our readers?

Valcke: VASCO is a leading supplier of strong authentication and e-signature solutions and services specializing in Internet Security applications and transactions. Read more