Tag Archives: embedded software

Monetizing the Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things (IoT) – which includes intelligent devices ranging from smartphones to medical robotics – will increase to 26 billion units installed by 2020. The latest Gartner estimate represents an almost 30-fold increase, up from 0.9 billion units in 2009.

According to Gartner research director Laurie Wurster, the hyper-growth of IoT will require critical rethinking of underlying business models, including the manufacturing supply chain and the important role software plays in product development and revenue models.

“IoT transforms all hardware and appliance OEMs into software providers. Licensing and entitlement management technology provides the locking capabilities that enable manufacturers to protect and monetize the embedded software IP running on connected intelligent devices,” she explained.

“Device manufacturers faced with increasing global competitive pressure to reduce manufacturing costs that produce thinner margins can leverage the value created with Internet-connected products to increase revenue. However, to secure additional revenue, manufacturers need to recognize the role embedded software and/or software applications play in the IoT and monetize this value.”

Similar to the traditional software industry, device manufacturers will be required to protect the intellectual property contained in applications. Concurrently, they’ll need to monetize the IP via the adoption of licensing and entitlement management systems that control access to the Internet-connected device.

“Licensing and entitlement management also enables flexible pricing and packaging, enabling the manufacturer to bundle product features, capabilities and capacities, ensure payment, provide upgrade paths, as well as new revenue streams,” said Wurster. 

”By controlling product functionality, features and capacities of Internet-connected devices via flexible licensing, device manufacturers will better be able to compete in current and new markets via increased speed to market with new products, new feature combinations and product enhancements.”

Wurster also warned that the adoption of licensing and entitlement management may be somewhat inhibited by the inexperience of many device manufacturers with software and the financial opportunities oftware-driven devices create. 

Indeed, numerous manufacturers still apply a traditional “box” mentality to their products, failing to take into account additional revenue opportunities that licensing-controlled embedded software and software applications deliver.

“Additional complications can arise as manufacturers navigate the transition to software-driven, Internet-connected solutions,” she added. “For success, strong leadership is needed to ensure that all departments are aligned around the new business strategy; and adopt the processes and business rules necessary to accommodate the business opportunities opened by the connected devices.”

Atmel Studio 6.2 goes live in Nuremberg (EW 2014)

Atmel has rolled out Studio 6.2 for its ARM-based and AVR-powered MCUs. The latest version of the popular integrated development environment (IDE) boasts a number of new features, including support for the Atmel-ICE probe, which provides advanced programming and debug connectivity, as well as the ability to capture data trace information.

As Steve Pancoast, Atmel’s VP of Software & Tools notes, Atmel-ICE allows engineers and designers to more easily develop and debug applications in a single, integrated environment.


Atmel’s Studio 6.2 also seamlessly integrates Percepio Trace, providing optimized insight into the run-time of embedded software with advanced trace visualization.

More specifically, Percepio Trace for Atmel Studio features control-flow trace (tasks and interrupts), custom data plots, application debug output, statistical code profiling, support for viewing MCU event counters and real-time operating system (RTOS) awareness. In addition to Percepio Trace, Atmel Studio 6.2 adds data breakpoints and live watch.

“With time-to-market pressures constantly increasing in today’s competitive market, advanced visualization support is a necessity,” explained Dr. Johan Kraft, CEO, Percepio AB.

“The integration of our Percepio Trace allows Atmel MCU designers to produce higher quality software in a shorter time and at a lower price point.”

Atmel’s Steve Pancoast expressed similar sentiments.

“With the increased complexity in today’s embedded designs, developers are differentiating their products through software and advanced peripherals. With Atmel’s latest Studio 6.2 version, we combine all the tools in a seamless, simple-to-use platform,” he said.

“As a leading provider of MCUs, we are committed to bringing an extensive and sophisticated eco-system to our software developers to ensure they have all the right tools to differentiate their products in this highly competitive market.”


Studio 6.2 can be downloaded here, free of charge.

A GUI for RF Performance Measurements

To help you measure RF performance in wireless designs, Atmel offers a Wireless Composer through the Atmel Gallery online apps store for embedded software, tools and extensions. The Wireless Composer provides a GUI for RF performance measurements while running selected Atmel wireless evaluation kits.

Using the Wireless Composer is straightforward — after you’ve downloaded the tool from Atmel Gallery, you select and download the proper hex file, and save it to any location on your PC. The Atmel Studio 6 Tools menu has a Device Programming menu that you can use to load the hex file into your target wireless platform. On the Composer’s opening screen, you select the Performance Analyzer from the Tools menu, start the tool and designate the proper port and connection to your target platform. Once all of the configuration steps are complete, you can view RF performance levels following measures including an energy detection scan, a single packet error rate (PER) test, continuous PER logging and more.

Wireless Composer supports several designated Atmel evaluation boards; the tool can also perform tests on other boards. The complete source code for the Wireless Library is available from Atmel Gallery. You can port this code to support the I/O configuration of a non-Atmel board. Just be sure that access is provided to the TXD and RXD signals of the UART or to a USB virtual COM port, if available. Also, make sure there are no conflicts with push buttons or LEDs used in the Wireless Composer apps or other I/O initializations. The tool should work easily with other boards as long as the boards use the same chipset or SoC used on a supported Atmel kit.