The 10 Biggest IoT News Stories Of 2019 (So Far)

CRN gives a rundown of the 10 biggest IoT new stories of 2019 so far, which includes new product launches, big acquisitions and new efforts to create IoT standards.

Tech Companies Make Big IoT Moves

Big company investments in the Internet of Things and new efforts to create IoT standards have helped define the biggest IoT news stories of the year so far.

Those major investments in IoT have manifested in different ways in 2019: through acquisitions, new product launches and new networks. Meanwhile, U.S. lawmakers and industry players are pursuing different measures to create new standards around IoT devices.

What follows is a rundown of the 10 biggest IoT news stories through the first six months of 2019.

10. Fast-Growing IoT Security Startup Armis Raises $65M Round

Internet of Things security startup Armis is hoping to eventually go public after raising a fresh $65 million in capital from investors as channel-driven sales grow at a fast clip.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company announced the Series C funding round in April, saying that it was led by venture capital heavyweight Sequoia Capital, bringing total funding to $112 million.

Yevgeny Dibrov, CEO and co-founder of Armis, told CRN that the company's sales grew 700 percent from the beginning of 2018 to the end of that year, which was fueled by more than 25 Fortune 100 companies and roughly two dozen other customers.

9. Wind River Future-Proofs Industrial IoT With New Platform

Wind River is taking important steps to future-proof industrial Internet of Things deployment with a new edge platform that enables multiple operating systems to run in a single environment.

The Alameda, Calif.-based company announced its Wind River Helix Virtualization Platform in June, saying that it was designed to modernize legacy systems in critical infrastructure by combining its real-time operation system with an embedded distribution of Linux in a single edge compute platform.

Jim Douglas, CEO of Wind River, told CRN that the platform will enable the company's customers to develop new applications while ensuring that legacy software will continue to run.

8. SAP Takes Larger Shot At IoT Market With Leonardo

SAP is making a bigger play for the industrial Internet of Things market with the launch of its new Leonardo IoT platform.

The Walldorf, Germany-based company announced the platform at Mobile World Congress in February, saying that its goal is to help enterprise grow revenue, increase productivity and improve customer experience by bringing physical data into the fold.

The Leonardo IoT platform helps enterprises with digital transformation by combining IoT data with business process data from SAP applications, improving existing practices, extending the capabilities of existing SAP IoT applications and creating new intelligent IoT applications.

7. Cisco Doubles Down On IoT With New Products And Acquisition

Cisco is doubling down on the Internet of Things with a new acquisition as well as new products, services and programs to help partners get on board.

Most recently, the San Jose, Calif.-based company announced in June that it plans to acquire Sentryo, a French company that specializes in device visibility and security for industrial control system networks. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In January, the company said it was expanding intent-based networking to edge networks with new IoT product lines — the Cisco Catalyst IE3x00 series of switches and the Cisco IR1101 integrated services router — while creating new resources for partners, which include validated IoT network designs.

6. Microsoft Acquires Express Logic To Expand IoT Device Coverage

Microsoft is increasing its competition with Amazon Web Services with an acquisition that will expand the company's Internet of Things coverage to "billions of new connected endpoints."

The Redmond, Wash.-based company announced in April that it had acquired Express Logic, the maker of the commercial real-time operating system ThreadX. Express Logic's RTOS software targets resource-constrained devices that run on microcontroller units, such as lightbulbs and medical devices.

With the acquisition, Microsoft said it will offer ThreadX as an alternative solution for highly constrained devices that can't use its Azure Sphere software. The deal will also enable ThreadX-powered devices to connect to Azure IoT edge devices.

5. Report Shows Arm's IoT Software Sales Have Stagnated

Even as a major provider of processor technology for connected devices, semiconductor designer Arm still hasn't seen a major uptake in its Internet of Things software business.

The Wall Street Journal reported in July that the SoftBank Group-owned company's IoT software sales have been flat for the last five years, not counting revenue from the acquisitions Arm has made. As of the most recent fiscal year, Arm's software business reached $191 million — a small fraction of the company's $2 billion revenue goal for 2025, according to a Bernstein analyst.

"The Internet of Things space is developing slower than most of us had hoped," former Arm executive Krisztian Flautner told the Journal.

4. AT&T, Verizon Launch Nationwide NB-IoT Networks

Telecom giants AT&T and Verizon are expanding their network coverage for power-constrained devices with new narrowband Internet of Things networks that are available throughout the U.S.

AT&T announced the nationwide availability of its NB-IoT network in April, calling it a "big step toward massive IoT and 5G."The company said NB-IoT will complement its existing LTE-M low-power wide area network in the U.S. and Mexico for LTE-M.

Verizon announced its national NB-IoT network in May, saying that ideal use cases include smart cities, smart buildings and utilities. The company also provides LTE Cat 1 and LTE Cat M1 networks for IoT.

Sprint beat AT&T and Verizon to the market with its own national NB-IoT network last year.

3. Intel, Arm Partner Again To Help Create New IoT Standards

Intel, Arm and other tech companies are working together to create a new industry standard for securely onboarding connected devices to the cloud.

Intel announced in June that the company is a founding member of the new IoT Technical Working Group alongside Arm and other companies within the FIDO Alliance, an industry consortium that was founded in 2012 to develop standards for password-less authentication.

The goal of FIDO's IoT Technical Working group is to create a standard specification for "large-scale IoT onboarding," the process in which devices are configured and connected to the cloud.

2. Infineon Targets IoT With $10B Cypress Acquisition

Infineon Technologies is looking to build a big business in the Internet of Things space with its blockbuster acquisition of Cypress Semiconductor.

The German semiconductor company announced its acquisition of Cypress in early June, saying the deal would be worth $23.85 per share in cash, or about $10.1 billion. The company said that the acquisition will accelerate its entry into new IoT applications for both industrial and consumer segments.

"With this transaction, we will be able to offer our customers the most comprehensive portfolio for linking the real with the digital world," Reinhard Ploss, CEO of Infineon, said in a statement. "This will open up additional growth potential in the automotive, industrial and Internet of Things sectors."

1. U.S. Lawmakers Introduce IoT Security Legislation

Some U.S. lawmakers are hoping to pass a bill that would require connected device manufacturers to comply with new security standards set by a federal agency.

The Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2019 was introduced by U.S. Senators Mark Warner and Cory Gardner earlier this year and made it out of the Committee of Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs in June with a favorable recommendation.

The bill would require the National Institute of Standards and Technology to issue recommendations that address secure development, identity management, patching and configuration management for IoT devices. The bill would also require contractors and vendors working with the U.S. government to adopt coordinated vulnerability disclosure policies.