I found interesting the following article of Iain Davidson who addressed few weeks ago the next step for the so called "M2M" - Internet of Things. Here it is:
In October 2012, we hosted an M2M industry event at Freescale in the UK (see a video here) The second time we have done this and for the second time a great success with more than 100 external attendees and around 20 external participants speaking and/or exhibiting. I will describe some personal highlights of the day in my next blog (soon, I promise) but events like this are actually just the climax of ‘networking’ over a period of several months … getting out the office, speaking to new audiences and connecting with new people. I found myself in Bath, Bristol, London, Falkirk, Amsterdam, Glasgow, Stockholm and Cambridge doing just that and every time a new and interesting connection was made. No surprises that Cambridge, home of ARM and to a vibrant community of tech startups, was always good.
As I write, I am reminded of a debate that I attended in June at the Cambridge Wireless 4th Future of Wireless International Conference at Cambridge University, which was titled “This House believes that the future of Innovation in the Wireless Industry is within the Virtual rather than the Physical World.” (You can replay the debate here.)
The “for” side points out that the center of gravity of innovation in the mobile industry has moved to the Internet and the cloud. It’s all about the software. The future is the apps, the content and the services – and all of it is accessible whenever and wherever they are needed. The “against” side believes that industry growth and value is a result of innovation in “actual” physical materials, hardware components, advanced chipsets, manufacturing expertise, and elegant product design. Sensors open up significant new innovation fronts in areas such as wireless healthcare and the Internet of Things. Players in the physical world will always have the key role in innovation, this side contends.
Watching the debate, a fascinating dynamic struck me. Since the iPhone, we’ve experienced an “innovation sprint” as mobile devices have driven network and service innovation and expansion, which in turn enables more advanced and smarter devices.
We have a similar dynamic in M2M: the virtual world versus the physical. The growth of connected ‘things’ is underway, and I think, fair to say, they mostly use 2G/3G mobile networks to date. Mobile networks, however, are designed and dimensioned for personal communications—for people consuming and paying for data and video.
Will mobile networks scale to match the demands of 50 billion things? They may, but there are so many other options now. The problem is they are developing at different rates.
In the virtual world, device management platforms, cloud computing and big data science are all flourishing.
In the physical world, we do have new wireless technologies for personal and home area networks. Likewise for metro and regional area networks all promise to deliver better economies of scale in terms of cost, energy and number of connections. There is a lack of maturity however.
In general, the physical world needs to catch up.
In the next phase, we need to see innovation in sensor technology, more like innovative approaches to deployment of large sensor (and actuator) networks.
We need to see acceleration and a maturing of common standards, more cross-sector collaboration and creative approaches to business models.
Bringing the “Internet of Things” to life requires a comprehensive systems approach, inclusive of intelligent processing and sensing technology, connectivity, software and services, along with a leading ecosystem of partners. We call this approach Freescale Connected Intelligence. It helps get our customers on the Internet of Things quickly and efficiently, enabling scalability and top-line growth.
At the beginning of this post, I mentioned the M2M event. We brought together a group of people who are working in the M2M space. It wasn’t a traditional Freescale event, we just had one speaker slot. As a group we explored some of the new technologies coming to the fore and, of course, those challenges. As I said, more about that in my next blog and hopefully a quick video to bring it life for you.
More on the Internet of Things on Freescale Embedded Beats blogs here