Venture Capital (VC) funding activity in the smart grid sector in 2015 quarter one more than doubled that of the last quarter of 2014 at US $185 million. Energy efficiency companies raised US $140 million and Battery/Storage raised US $69 million according to Mercom Capital Group. Smart grid merger and acquisitions came in high at US $196 million for disclosed transaction.
The connected life style should have a market potential of US $731 billion by 2020, this is according to Frost and Sullivan. This figure includes revenue from all sectors that touches the connected home. Cloud computing, mobility, low cost sensors, big data are driving the Internet of Things (IoT) and connected industries.
Eletrobras, a major Brazilian utility has selected Cisco’s FAN (Field Area Network) technology for a BRL $1.2 million project funded by the World Bank. The Energia+ project will cover the states of Acre, Rondonia, Piaui, Amazonas, Alagoas and Roraima. The aim is to help Eletrobras to improve operational efficiency and control of non-technical losses, which is as high as 22 per cent in some areas.
About 50km west of Tokyo on an old Panasonic factory site PanaHome the housing division of Panasonic Group is building its vision of a smart and sustainable town. The 600 homes and 400 apartments have all the latest appliances and services of a smart home. All the homes are fitted with solar panels for feeding surplus energy into the smart gird, and the world’s first domestic ENE-FARM household fuel-cell generator.
Zonoff said they have been working with Nest developer program and the official SoundTouch API from Bose to make the compatibility possible. Now Zonoff home automation system owner can add nest thermostat and Bose SoundTouch music system to the list of controllable home appliances.
Microsoft has big ideas and plans for the connected home but with most ideas you need support and partnerships to make them a reality. Since last year I have noticed that the relationship between Microsoft and Insteon has grown and Insteon it seems has become a key partner in Microsoft’s connected home strategy, something they have been working on for some time.
Cox Enterprise has increased its strategic partnership in the health sector with investment in digital health technology and services provider Rimidi. The digital health solution provider is base in Atlanta and focuses on diabetes and other chronic conditions. Cox earlier this year made another investment in Healthspot, a provider of patient and provider driven telehealth technology.
Toshiba has made available new hardware and Software Development Kits (SDK) for developers and manufacturers of Internet of Things (IOT) solutions. Both are based on Toshiba's proprietary technology ApP Lite TZ1000 series of processors for wearable and Internet of things devices. Together, the kits allow evaluation of devices in an environment closer to that of their final application. With the hardware and software kits vendors will be able to quickly and easily design application processors into their application that will shorten the development cycles.
Xfinity Home has come a long way since its first launched back in 2012. Now Comcast said they will be opening the Xfinity platform for partner integration with the release of a Software Development Kit (SDK). The new software tool will allow devices from Comcast partners to work seamlessly with the Xfinity Smart Home platform, offering more features and personalization.
It seems the Energy Service Network Association (ESNA); the body that developed the Open Smart Grid Protocol (OSGP) will have to go back to the drawing board with the Open Smart Grid Protocol. Researchers, Phillip Jovanovic from the University of Passau in Germany and Samuel Neves from the University of Coimbra in Portugal have identified weaknesses in the authenticated encryption of the protocol.