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Wireless leads in global semicon spends!

February 1, 2012 2 comments

Interesting, but not surprising! Wireless is now leading in the global semiconductor spends!! I was having a chat with a Frost & Sullivan executive this morning, and he mentioned telecom. Of course, that’s the key driver!!

According to IHS iSuppli, wireless has now displaced computers as the top semiconductor spending area for OEMs in 2011. And, this trend may continue in 2012, going by early indications. Noteworthy in the wireless march has been the tremendous success of Apple’s iPhone and iPad.

As per IHS iSuppli, the global spending by the world’s top OEMs on microchips for wireless products was $58.6 billion in 2011, up 14.5 percent from $51.2 billion in 2010. This has led to wireless leading computers as the world’s largest OEM semiconductor spending segment in 2011. Notably, tablets and mobile handsets have led the way!

With many more companies developing smartphones and tablets, this trend does not appear to buck any time soon. It is further expected that the wireless segment will continue to generate the highest growth over the next two years. Smartphones are definitely a part of this, as are tablets.

Back in late 2000, at the ITU World Telecom in Hong Kong, the first mobile phones with Internet browsing were being touted. As were 3G and Bluetooth! Those were the days when ‘WAP is CRAP’ made more headlines and bore the brunt of many ‘telecom jokes’. Why, in early 2002, I even wrote an article for Electronics Business Manufacturing Asia (EBN Asia), on Bluetooth,  which was still trying to find its bearings. I can’t locate that article anymore, but some of the comments in that article are worth remembering. One comment was whether Bluetooth and WiFi could co-exist!

One magazine had said, “The future of Bluetooth wireless technology is becoming decidedly mixed as proponents and analysts continue to question not only how soon the short-range technology will take off, but also whether the technology is fundamentally sound.”

Thankfully, all of those days are behind us! Today, Bluetooth is firmly entrentched, as is WiFi. And, on the mobile phone!!

In 2003, the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) unveiled a new ‘five-minute ready’ program created to challenge and guide Bluetooth product developers and manufacturers in the Asia Pacific region to deliver devices that give consumers a “five-minute out-of-the-box experience.” I had met up with Anders Edlund, marketing director for Bluetooth SIG in Singapore, and had a clear understanding of the technology. Today, I believe, the Bluetooth SIG is advancing standardization of active 3D glasses using Bluetooth!

Round-up 2011: Best of electronics, solar/PV and telecom

December 30, 2011 1 comment

Here’s the best of electronics, solar/PV and telecom for the year 2011. Enjoy! 😉

ELECTRONICS
M/H can truly deliver ‘real TV’ experience!

Cisco’s borderless networks architecture help enterprises overcome security challenges

Symantec releases latest Intelligence Report!

Norton cybercrime report 2011: Exposing the true scale!

Cloud deployment trends in APAC: IDC

Very fitting finale to Harry Potter!

XConnect’s VIE set to make video calls as easy as voice calls!

Vision technology can add valuable capabilities to electronic products: Jeff Bier, EVA

Tablets likely to transform ICT industry landscape: Computex 2011

Embedded Vision Alliance (EVA) is born!

Kotura leads the way in silicon photonics!

Aftermath of Japanese earthquake: Implications for global electronics industry!

Disruptions to global electronics supply chain following Japan’s quake!

Japanese quake and tsunami — too devastating to watch on TV!

What’s with attack toolkits and malicious websites?

SOLAR/PV
Global solar PV industry likely to be 22 GW in 2012!

HCPV on way to utility market!

Solar PV industry recommended to stay optimistic; US govt. supports India’s clean energy initiative!

Solarcon India 2011 begins with record exhibitors

PV inverter — innovations and market trends

Solar installations: How long will boom last?

Lessons to learn from Solyndra debacle!

Solar power becoming increasingly affordable: Dr. Charlie Gay

What’s happening with Indian solar/PV industry?

TELECOM
LogMeIn resolving IT challenges due to enterprise mobility!

Microsoft launches developer program for Windows Phone

Lava Mobiles launches classy S12 smartphone!

Steve Jobs: Master of the game!

Telesphere Videoconnect: Videoconferencing in the cloud!

Ether 1.3.1 phone adaptive antenna solution integrates with smartphones!

Wavion offers gamer changer in Wi-Fi offloading

Celebrating the World IPv6 Day!

Round-up 2010: Best of electronics, telecom and technology

December 28, 2010 5 comments

Year 2010 has been a good year for the global electronics industry, rather, the technology industry, coming right after a couple of years of recession. Well, it is time to look back on 2010 and see the good, bad and ugly sides, if any, of electronics, telecom and technology.

Presenting my list of top posts for 2010 from these three segments.

ELECTRONICS

Electronics for energy efficient powertrain

Photonics rocks in India @ APW 2010, Cochin!

Plastic Logic’s QUE proReader looks to mean business!

Growing Indian power electronics market provides host of opportunities

Philips focuses on how interoperability, content sharing drive CE devices!

Apple never ceases to amaze!

Is this a war of tablets, or Apple OS vs. Google Android?

India needs to become major hardware player!

Roundup of day 2 @ Electronica India 2010

Strategic roadmap for electronics enabling energy efficient usage: Venkat Rajaraman, Su-Kam

NI stresses on innovation, launches LabVIEW 2010!

What’s Farnell (element14) up to? And, semicon equipment bubble burst? Whoa!!

Bluetooth set as short range wireless standard for smart energy!

View 3D TV, without glasses, today!

Indian medical electronics equipment industry to grow at 17 percent CAGR over next five years: ISA

Top 10 electronics industry trends for 2011

TELECOMMUNICATIONS

LTE will see larger deployments, higher volumes than WiMAX!

LTE should benefit from WiMAX beachhead!

Context-aware traffic mediation software could help telcos manage data tsunami: Openwave

Mobile WiMAX deployment and migration/upgrade strategies

Upgrade to WiMAX 2 uncertain as TD-LTE gains in momentum!

Tejas celebrates 10 years with new products for 3G/BWA backhaul

Focus on gyroscopes for mobile phone apps: Yole

Bluetooth low energy should contribute to WSN via remote monitoring

INSIDE Contactless unveils SecuRead NFC solution for mobile handset market

How are femtocells enhancing CDMA networks?

Top 10 telecom industry trends for 2011

TECHNOLOGY

Symantec’s Internet threat security report on India has few surprises!

Epic — first ever web browser for India, from India!

Norton cybercrime report: Time to take back your Internet from cybercriminals!

NComputing bets big on desktop virtualization

Brocade launches VDX switches for virtualized, cloud-optimized data centers

It isn’t an easy job tracking so many different segments! 🙂 I will try and do better than this next year!

Best wishes for a very, very happy and prosperous 2011! 🙂

Bluetooth low energy should contribute to WSN via remote monitoring

November 3, 2010 1 comment

This is the concluding part of my discussion with Mike Foley, executive director, Bluetooth SIG, which looks at how the market for in-home wireless in smart energy will be developing in the years ahead, as well as the scope in wireless sensor networks (WSN).

Focus of Bluetooth Smart Energy Group
First, a bit about the focus of Bluetooth Smart Energy Group and what it has achieved so far.

The Smart Energy Study Group, includes major players like Emerson, and illustrates the Bluetooth SIG’s commitment to this market. The Study Group is working closely with other standards bodies to help define future global standards for smart energy and the products that form that ecosystem.

Foley said: “Within the next few years, your utility will start to replace your existing meters and you will be able to buy household appliances that can connect to your smart meter. The Bluetooth SIG is working with the industry to ensure that such a connection is cost effective, reliable and secure.

“Currently, Bluetooth is used around the world in smart energy applications — from simple energy monitors to complex mesh networks controlling solar arrays. With a ubiquitous presence in mobile phones, it also provides an ecosystem for controlling smart energy devices that users already own. The group has come together to make a strong case for Bluetooth in the smart energy market, and to push for next steps in this growing industry.”

Market for in-home wireless
Given this scenario, it will be interesting to survey how the market for in-home wireless in smart energy will be developing in the years ahead.

According to Foley, remote control and home automation have a bright future in the smart energy space. If Bluetooth is selected for the connectivity link to appliances, the integration of a smart ecosystem throughout the home will be significantly easier and faster. Once home appliances start to connect, they will likely also require their own wireless connections.

Zpryme Research has predicted that by 2015, 19.2 percent of washing machines, 17.4 percent of refrigerators and 17.3 percent of dryers sold in the US will include smart connections. Also, Whirlpool has publicly announced that by 2015, all of its electronically controlled appliances will be capable of receiving and responding to signals from smart grids. Read more…

Bluetooth set as short range wireless standard for smart energy!

November 1, 2010 1 comment

Back in early 2003, I’d done a story with Anders Edlund, marketing director, EMEA of Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG). Those were the days when Bluetooth was just overcoming its teething problems. At that time, the SIG had unveiled a ‘five-minute ready’ program created to challenge and guide Bluetooth product developers and manufacturers in the Asia Pacific region to deliver devices that give consumers a “five-minute out-of-the-box experience.”

Mike Foley, executive director, Bluetooth SIG.

Mike Foley, executive director, Bluetooth SIG.

Fast forward to 2010! Nearly a fortnight ago, the Bluetooth SIG announced an enhanced focus on the needs of manufacturers of consumer devices in the smart grid environment. This effort, called Bluetooth Smart Energy, addresses the needs for wireless connections of sensors and actuators in the residence.

It is a great pleasure to hook up again with the Bluetooth SIG after quite a few years. Bluetooth as a technology, and Bluetooth SIG itself, have come a long way, very successfully, as well.

In the first part of a two-part discussion on Bluetooth Smart Energy, Mike Foley, executive director, Bluetooth SIG, discusses the rationale behind the Smart Energy effort, how it will benefit users, and whether it can stand up to possible challenges from other technologies.

May I also take this opportunity to thank Ms Jennifer Lopez, who made this possible, along with Starr Million Baker. Back to the story!

Rationale behind Bluetooth SIG’s Smart Energy effort
First, obviously, why the effort behind the Bluetooth SIG’s smart energy effort and why now!

According to Mike Foley, the smart energy market is a rapidly growing arena and one that the SIG is very interested in expanding its presence.

He said: “As different smart energy projects are planned, developed, and implemented, it is clear that there are different national requirements for each. However, there is an agreement that smart energy within the domestic environment will require the introduction of smart meters – and that is where we come in.

“These meters, which monitor and control our use of electricity, gas, and water, will need to provide real time information to consumers and interact in some form with energy consuming appliances. The interaction will take place with the help of short range wireless connections that are based on an existing standard.

“Bluetooth technology has proven itself to be a universally accepted wireless standard, implemented in a variety of use cases, and is now set to be established as the short range wireless standard for smart energy.”

Challenges from various technologies
Given the case that Bluetooth is positioned to be the short range standard for smart energy, how will it stand up to possible challenges from technologies such as ZigBee, RF4CE, Wi-Fi Direct, ANT, etc?

Foley said: “In my opinion, there is room for different types of technologies in this space. The one thing that has always set Bluetooth technology apart from competitive technologies is its ubiquity. Bluetooth technology is used in a variety of devices and is the go-to wireless standard for mobile phones, which are devices that could play a key role in remote energy monitoring.”

If utilities are going to adopt a short range wireless standard – why not adopt one that already has a presence in a number of key devices that users already own?

Bluetooth is by far the most successful of any of the short range wireless standards. It has been around for just over 10 years (twice as long as ZigBee) and outsells all of the other short range standards put together, with over 1 billion chips shipped every year.

“The very first Bluetooth products can still communicate with new ones that you buy today – something that neither 802.11 nor ZigBee can claim. Equally importantly, over the decade it has been shipping, it has evolved to address all of the key requirements of the smart energy market,” Foley added. Read more…

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