Our guest this week is Jennifer Pattison Tuohy from The Verge. I’ve known Jenn for almost a decade from her work covering the smart home for a variety of publications. She is smart, tries everything she writes about, and has the history in covering technology to see the bigger picture. She’s on the show to talk about where the smart home is today, the state of Matter, and what business models are likely to work for connected home devices. She gives us some insights into some cool things the Connectivity Standards Alliance is planning, her thoughts about smart home infrastructure versus devices, and even shares her current smart home setup. It’s the perfect note on which to end the show.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel Guest: Jennifer Pattison Tuohy from The Verge
Our guest this week is Mariusz Malkowski, founder and CTO of Trident IoT, who tells us about the company’s origin and what it means for the Z-Wave community. He also explains how Matter will work with Z-Wave, and the importance of bridging between the two standards. We discuss the future of Z-Wave, including the plans for Z-Wave Long Range and planned security upgrades. We then cover how Trident is going to build Z-Wave chips, but also how it will focus on building or integrating other smart home radio protocols into devices, and will act as a Z-Wave certification house as well. Enjoy the show.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel Guests: Mariusz Malkowski, founder and CTO of Trident IoT Sponsors: Skyhawk
David Limp’s departure from Amazon inspires a smart home reckoning
Are expensive doors and compost services the future of the connected devices?
The Homey Pro is an expensive hub with privacy in mind
Why a new chipmaker could boost the Z-Wave standard
Trident IoT is building a new type of chip company
Our guest this week is Muthu Sabarethinam, VP AI/ML product and services with Honeywell, who is on the show to talk about TinyML. We start off discussing how Honeywell is thinking about using data from equipment to build services, and then segue into talking about how Honeywell might use TinyML located on sensors. Sabarethinam explains the reasons Honeywell wants algorithms that can run directly on a sensor, and how it will help with security, power, and latency. He also shares his thoughts on how companies should package their algorithms to make it easier to deploy TinyML at scale. For perspective, Honeywell supports more than a million sensors in the field that could all use TinyML. We conclude by talking about business models and how customers want to access data. It’s a great show.
This week’s show kicks off with a surprising revelation from Kevin, who has decided to swap out his smart home platform. He explains his choice, which also may represent a theme of sorts, as we see more and more high-end smart home hubs hit the market. We discuss the HOOBS Pro device and the Homey Pro, both of which cram a bunch of different radios into one powerful box. Then we talk about California’s Privacy Protection Agency and its decision to investigate how connected car companies are using consumers’ data. Do connected car companies violate California’s 2018 privacy law? After that we dig into a new report about the troubles facing OT and IT security professionals, and marvel over a water-soluble PCB board that might help address some of the challenges associated with e-waste. The board isn’t destined for large scale production or IoT devices yet, but we applaud any effort to bring more easily recycled electronics to the market. Finally, we hear from Signify’s CEO that the maker of Philips Hue devices is planning a video camera for a home security offering. We close the first segment with a pair of comments from our listeners responding to last week’s question about turning off lights using a sensor.
Our guest this week is Alexis Susset, the CTO of UnaBiz. He’s on the show to explain the value of Low-Power Wide-Area networks and Unabiz’s plans to offer many LPWANs under one roof. He shares how the acquisition of Sigfox’s assets last year helped give Unabiz the credibility it needed to create deals with other LPWAN providers to share their networks. He also does a deep dive into the pros and cons of various available LPWAN technologies such as Sigfox, LoRaWAN, and cellular. Finally, we talk about the rise of satellite networks for IoT devices and whether or not we’ll need any more LPWAN technologies in the near future. Enjoy the show.
This week we didn’t see a ton of news, yet we managed to talk about several big trends in IoT. We started with an update on Amazon’s planned acquisition of iRobot, and Amazon dropping the price by 15%. We explain why and then decided to explain in depth why we need the planned cybersecurity labeling plan for connected devices because so many people asked me why we need this. We then talk about Unabiz creating a partnership with Semtech to bring Sigfox technology into the Semtech network. Then we talk about insurance companies using data gleaned from drones, satellite photos, and IoT devices and how that may hurt consumers, as insurance companies try to cancel policies in risky areas. This is where climate change, the IoT, and data privacy will all intersect in ways that will harm consumers. We then ponder what will happen with Google displays as the company pulls back from its Fuchsia OS, and how a smart home reporter’s broken HVAC system made her realize the limits of the smart home. Finally, we answer a listener question about using a motion detector to make sure kids turn off their lights.
Our guest this week is Adrian Dybwad, CEO and founder of PurpleAir, which makes a line of air quality sensors. As we head into wildfire season here on the West Coast, air quality data is becoming more important for people. For example, I turn regularly to PurpleAir data from the app, its web site, or on my Google display to see if I should go outside for a run or hold off. Dybwad and I talk about why the company was created, and how the air sensors are helping communities lobby for positive policy changes that can improve air quality. We also talk about how to think about connected devices contributing to citizen science, and why having a lot of sensors can mitigate concerns over accuracy. We spend a lot of time on how air quality sensors work and how to place them optimally as well. Enjoy the show.
Our guest this week is Steve Hanna, a distinguished engineer at Infineon and the chair of the security working group at the Connectivity Standards Alliance. He’s on the show to tell us more about the need for a voluntary, government cybersecurity mark for devices, and explain why developing such a mark is so difficult. We talk about the FCC’s role in managing the program, the time frame for a mark, and how the government plans to think about keeping up with the always-changing security landscape. We also discuss how Infineon’s customers are changing their views about IoT security labels, and how the mark relates to work done by the Arm’s PSA security standard and the security elements that are part of the Matter standard. It’s a good interview, made better by the fact that Hanna sounds just like Mr. Rogers.
This week on the show, Kevin and I start off talking about some of the Roku gear I’ve been playing with for the last week. We discuss the gear and the subscription plans and how they compare with what else is on the market, before moving on to talk about Latch laying off 59% of its workforce in preparation for what I suspect will be a pivot from access control to a services business aimed at folks living in luxury apartments. After that, we share some tales of civil disobedience from San Francisco, where activists are placing traffic cones on top of self-driving vehicles to halt them in their tracks. Then we devote the rest of our time to novel sensors and platforms for sensing, starting with research showing that seven days of smart watch data can predict Parkinson’s, and research on a wearable for people with epilepsy that can predict seizures. We also cover funding for Pano, a camera platform that uses computer vision to “see” fires in remote locations, and a sensing platform called Nami raising $10 million in Series A financing. There’s also a new sensing device called the Nano Computer from Nodle that combines a few sensors, an Arm M-0 microcontroller, a Bluetooth radio, and a printed battery in a device that should cost about $3 per device at shipments above 100,000 devices. Finally, we answer a listener question about the Aqara FP2 presence sensor and security.
Our guest this week is Alex Capecelatro, CEO and co-founder of Josh.ai, who returns to the show to talk about Josh.ai adding generative AI to the company’s voice platform. We get a lesson in Josh.ai’s history and why it decided to build a voice interface for the home even after Apple, Amazon, and other big companies launched their own products. Then he explains how Josh.ai added ChatGPT to its platform and the steps it took to help customers understand the limitations of the service. We talk about why it’s useful and how customers are using it so far. Since every company in the smart home space is contemplating the role generative AI will play in their products, this is an essential listen.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel Guest: Alex Capecelatro, CEO and co-founder of Josh.ai Sponsors: Blynk and Particle
Who is the Roku smart home for?
Latch cleaned house before Jamie Siminoff takes over
The most innovative element in the IoT is new sensing technology
What Josh.ai learned when adding generative AI to its voice platform
Practical thoughts on privacy for voice assistants and generative AI
Our guest this week is JJ Lechleiter, SVP and general manager of PTC’s Vuforia business, discussing another kind of wearable — headsets. Lechleiter has been building augmented and mixed reality software for years, and shared whether he thinks the introduction of Apple’s Vision Pro headset will change the adoption of mixed reality, augmented reality, and virtual reality in manufacturing operations. He also shares different use cases where AR and VR are already in use and explains the various reasons one might use one over the other. Lechleiter discusses different headsets already on the market and shares some thoughts about how AI, IoT, and AR will get used in day-to-day manufacturing. It’s a good show.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel Guest: JJ Lechleiter, of PTC’s Vuforia business Sponsors: Blynk and Particle
Why wouldn’t Apple make a hearing aid?
Is Humane the future tech that moves us beyond the smartphone?
Swarm stops selling its VHF satellite hardware
Can Apple move the needle on mixed reality in manufacturing?
Our guest this week is Scott Ford, the CEO of Pepper. Pepper recently teamed up with Embedded Insurance to create an add-on cyber insurance policy that Pepper can offer through its partnerships with service providers and consumer device makers. Pepper provides a smart home application and service for other businesses, for example providing a smart home interface for an ISP or providing cloud storage services for a connected camera maker. Much like adding on cloud storage can generate extra revenue, adding cyber insurance or other insurance policies can generate money. So customers of Pepper’s customers may soon get a notification asking if they want to pay $5 for cyber insurance that will offset some of the costs of identity theft, cyberbullying, cyber extortion, and more. Ford talks about the cyber insurance product and about how connected devices are changing the way that insurers market their products, and how they assess risk. Honestly, that risk assessment is both exciting and a little bit scary. Enjoy the show.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Janko Roettgers, creator of the Lowpass newsletter Guest: Scott Ford, the CEO of Pepper Sponsors: Blynk and Particle
Does Roku really want to build a smart home OS or just sell more gear?
Josh.ai brings generative AI to smart homes, and it’s nice
Nanoleaf’s 4-D screen mirror tech is pretty cool
Why your smart camera maker may soon offer you insurance
How connected devices change the way insurance is sold … and priced
This week’s guest is Ran Roth, CEO and co-founder of Sensibo, a maker of smart HVAC controllers. The add-on devices connect to window units, mini splits and other A/C and heating units that use IR controllers. We talk about smart energy and the road the company has taken since its founding in 2014. But most of our conversation focuses on how Sensibo is using ChatGPT to improve the user experience with its devices. Roth also hints at other potential use cases for ChatGPT that are less intuitive, and explains how he thinks the availability of large language models will help companies that have access to them use their data more easily. He likens it to the shift that Amazon’s cloud computing had on innovation after AWS launched cloud computing (EC2) in 2006. He then talks about what he’s learned so far and the concerns people have around AI and privacy. It’s a good show.
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel Guest: Ran Roth, CEO and co-founder of Sensibo Sponsors: Blynk and Particle
As expected, Google’s Pixel tablet isn’t a major improvement for the smart home
Better energy harvesting from Dracula sucks more power from light
Broadcom’s chips could lead to smartphones with Zigbee or Thread
How Sensibo is using ChatGPT to parse a lot of data
What Sensibo has learned about using generative AI