Tag Archives: Internet of Things Sensors

Report: Internet of Things semiconductor market set for rapid growth

The Internet of Things (IoT) processor, sensor and communications markets are set to grow by 36.2% next year, according to a new Gartner report.


The study reveals that processors will be the largest revenue contributor to the connected “things” semiconductor device forecast ($7.58 billion in 2015), while sensors will experience the greatest increase with 47.5 percent growth in 2015.

“The demand for billions of things will ripple throughout the entire value chain, from software and services to semiconductor devices,” explained Alfonso Velosa, Gartner Research Director. “These ‘things’ will drive huge demand for individual chips. IoT semiconductor maturation will come from industries spanning consumer, industrial, medical, automotive and others.”

As alluded to by Velosa, analysts predict that the automotive and household consumer markets will help spur this growth, as companies will seek to research and develop IoT-based devices, ranging from smart lighting to in-vehicle entertainment systems. In addition, Gartner emphasizes that both safety regulations and the convenience of autonomous vehicles will drive a “tremendous demand” for new semiconductor devices in the car.

One example of how the Internet of Things will transform the car of tomorrow is the use of so-called predictive maintenance. Car owners will be notified of any necessary maintenance via small sensors throughout the engine; as a result, predictive maintenance enables superior experience for the consumer while paving the way for cost savings for both the consumer and the auto dealer.

Furthermore, LED lighting will be a huge volume play, both in lowering costs and allowing for new services through its capability to connect, network and sense the environment. Consumers looking to enhance their daily lives through the use of connected devices will also add to the IoT demand through both wearable technology, like smart glasses, smartwatches and fitness bands, as well as televisions and set-top boxes.

“Gartner forecasts almost 30% growth through 2020 for IoT semiconductor revenue,” concluded Dean Freeman, Gartner Research Vice President. “This revenue spans every conceivable industry and is driven by the immense scale of low-cost devices. Some in the industry believe this growth will transform the semiconductor industry. However, further investigation shows that the majority of IoT devices are commodity offerings. The truth is that inexpensive devices are one of the biggest enablers of IoT.”

In order to make this more intelligent, more connected world a reality, these Internet and wireless-enabled devices will be embedded with Atmel microcontrollers to give once-ordinary “things” new powers.

5 IoT challenges for connected car dev

Growth in adoption of connected cars has exploded as of late, and is showing no signs of slowing down, especially the vehicle-to-infrastructure and vehicle-to-retail segments. As adoption grows exponentially, the challenges in how we develop these apps emerge as well.

One of the biggest challenges to consider will be connectivity, and how we connect and network the millions of connected cars on the road. How can we ensure that data gets from Point A to Point B reliably? How can we ensure that data transfer is secure? And how do we deal with power, battery, and bandwidth constraints?

connected car

1. Signaling

At the core of a connected car solution is bidirectional data streaming between connected cars, servers, and client applications. Connected car revolves around keeping low-powered, low-cost sockets open to send and receive data. This data can include navigation, traffic, tracking, vehicle health and state (Presence); pretty much anything you want to do with connected car.

Signaling is easy in the lab, but challenging in the wild. There are an infinite amount of speed bumps (pun intended) for connected cars, from tunnels to bad network connectivity, so reliable connectivity is paramount. Data needs to be cached, replicated, and most importantly sent in realtime between connected cars, servers, and clients.

2. Security

Then there’s security, and we all know the importance of that when it comes to connected car (and the Internet of Things in general). Data encryption (AES and SSL), authentication, and data channel access control are the major IoT data security components.


In looking at data channel access control, having fine-grain publish and subscribe permissions down to individual channel or user is a powerful tool for IoT security. It enables developers to create, restrict, and close open channels between client apps, connected car, and servers. With connected car, IoT developers can build point-to-point applications, where data streams bidirectionally between devices. Having the ability to grant and revoke access to user connection is just another security layer on top of AES and SSL encryption.

3. Power and Battery Consumption

How will we balance the maintaining of open sockets and ensuring high performance while minimizing power and battery consumption? As with other mobile applications, for the connected car, power and battery consumption considerations are essential.

M2M publish/subscribe messaging protocols like MQTT are built for just this, to ensure delivery in bandwidth, high latency, and unreliable environments. MQTT specializes in messaging for always-on, low-powered devices, a perfect fit for connected car developers.

4. Presence

Connected devices are expensive, so we need a way to keep tabs on our connected cars, whether it be for fleet and freight management, taxi dispatch, or geolocation. ‘Presence’ functionality is a way to monitor individual or groups of IoT devices in realtime, and has found adoption across the connected car space. Developers can build custom vehicle states, and monitor those in realtime as they go online/offline, change state, etc.

connected car

Take fleet management for example. When delivery trucks are out on route, their capacity status is reflected in realtime with a presence system. For taxi and dispatch, the dispatch system knows when a taxi is available or when its currently full. And with geolocation, location data is updated by the millisecond, which can also be applied to taxi dispatch and freight management.

5. Bandwidth Consumption

Just like power and battery, bandwidth consumption is the fifth connected car challenge we face today. For bidirectional communication, we need open socket connections, but we can’t have them using massive loads of bandwidth. Leveraging M2M messaging protocols like the aforementioned MQTT lets us do just that.

Building the connected car on a data messaging system with low overhead, we can keep socket connections open with limited bandwidth consumption. Rather than hitting the servers once multiple times per second, keeping an open socket allows data to stream bidirectionally without requiring requests to the server.

Solution Kit for Connected Cars

The PubNub Connected Car Solution Kit makes it easy to reliably send and receive data streams from your connected car, facilitating dispatch, fleet management applications and personalized auto management apps. PubNub provides the realtime data stream infrastructure that can bring connected car projects from prototype to production without scalability issues.

Report: IoT to become multitrillion-dollar market by 2020

As previously reported in Bits & Pieces, the potential for the Internet of Things (IoT) is pretty clear. By 2020, Cisco forecasts that there will be approximately 50 billion devices connected to the Internet, while IDC analysts project the worldwide market for IoT solutions will rise from $1.9 trillion in 2013 to a staggering $7.1 trillion. According to a recent survey from PwC, enterprises are now turning to sensors for many of the same reasons that they would adopt most technologies, such as greater efficiency. As a result the study has found that more companies are embarking on the gradual but massive adoption of the IoT, particularly investing in sensors to collect data, which is then wirelessly sent for further analysis or alerts.


The survey entitled, “Sensing the future of the Internet of Things,” reveals the ways in which the ever-evolving IoT is transforming the everyday physical objects that surround us into an ecosystem of information that will enrich our lives. “From refrigerators to parking spaces to houses, the IoT is bringing more and more things into the digital fold every day, which will likely make the IoT a multi-trillion dollar industry in the near future.”

“While the IoT represents the convergence of advances in miniaturization, wireless connectivity, increased data storage capacity and batteries, the IoT wouldn’t be possible without sensors,” PwC reports. “Sensors detect and measure changes in position, temperature, light, etc. and they are necessary to turn billions of objects into data-generating ‘things’ that can report on their status, and in some cases, interact with their environment. Because sensor endpoints fundamentally enable the IoT, sensor investments are an early indicator of the IoT’s progress.” According to PwC’s 6th Annual Digital IQ survey of nearly 1,500 business and technology executives, the IoT movement appears to be well underway.

The study found that 20% of companies are investing in IoT sensors, up from 17% last year. In addition 54% of top performers (survey respondents whose companies are in the top quartile for revenue growth, profitability, and innovation) said that they will be investing more in sensors this year, while 14% of the respondents claim that sensors are top strategic importance to their companies in the next three to five years.


Writing for Wired Innovation Insights, PWC’s Chris Curran explains that in the coming years, “Businesses will augment their operations, adding connected sensors to people, places, processes and products to gather and analyze information to make better decisions. I call this phenomenon the Internet of Business Things (IoBT).”

The Internet of Things can help consumers achieve goals by greatly improving their decision-making capacity via the augmented intelligence of the IoT, PwC notes. “For businesses, the IoBT helps companies achieve enhanced process optimization and efficiencies by collecting and reporting on data collected from the business environment.”

“Already, we’re seeing companies use sensors to track the movement of customers and employees who serve them. Product and shelf sensors are feeding inventory algorithms so businesses can replenish supplies exactly when they need to. Machines are being developed to detect when an employee isn’t properly trained and will shut down in response to an inadequately trained operator. Robots are coming to market to not replace workers, but to augment their work by sensing and assisting. Companies are even putting sensors on employees and in conference rooms to learn how to build better teams and to more efficiently balance real estate use between individual and shared space,” Curran adds.


Sensors are important in providing this so-called business intelligence to customers, as the data gathered enables them make better, faster decisions, in areas like business processes, supply chain and customer experience. The survey also went on to highlight the top 10 industries currently investing in sensors. Among the most notable included energy and mining (33%), power and utilities (32%), automotive (31%), industrial (25%) and hospitality (22%).

For those interested in learning more, you can access the entire PwC report here.