Microlise have launched the hunt for the UK’s best truck driver. Now in its sixth year, this popular award initiative shortlists drivers by analysing a year’s worth of Microlise telematics performance data to reveal the most talented short, medium and long distance drivers. The coveted top slot of Driver of the Year will formally be announced at the Microlise Transport Conference on 20th May 2020.
The awards process begins with the Microlise Data Science team, who will analyse in excess of 225,000 drivers’ telematics records from 2019. Data will be anonymised with company, contract and driver personal identification information removed. In this way, the process, which was initially developed in conjunction with The University of Nottingham’s Advanced Data Analytics Centre, will identify the best performing drivers.
Five additional nomination-based categories – Young Driver, Most Improved, Lifetime Achievement, HGV Hero and Extra Mile are also open to the entire HGV community, regardless of whether Microlise telematics technology is used. Drivers and transport managers are invited to nominate their colleagues, employers are then asked to support the nomination and provide further qualitative evidence that may result in a driver being named as a winner.
An independent panel of industry experts will shortlist three drivers in each category and oversee the awards process. Chief Executive of the Road Haulage Association, Richard Burnett, Editor of Motor Transport, Steve Hobson, and retired Traffic Commissioner for Scotland, Joan Aitken will be among this year’s judges.
Shortlisted drivers across all categories will win a track day and will be guests at a special awards evening prior to the Microlise Transport Conference on 20 May. The Microlise Driver of the Year will receive their award at the Conference itself in front of a packed house of over 1,200 delegates.
“These are the most comprehensive awards for drivers of heavy commercial vehicles. Our data science team uses the latest technology to evaluate data from hundreds of thousands of anonymous drivers, to help us to understand who is the country’s best driver,” said Bob Harbey, Executive Director at Microlise. “This is one of our favourite projects in the year as it allows us to recognise and celebrate the tremendous contribution drivers make to the transport industry and to our economy as a whole.”
Bibby Distribution driver, Mark Field, beat off stiff competition in 2019 to win the Microlise Driver of the Year Award and also won the short distance category, featuring drivers who regularly undertake journeys of up to 30,000 miles each year.
Nominations can be made at the Microlise Driver of the Year Award website on or before 14 February 2020.
ZONESCAN NB-IoT is the world’s first NB-IoT leak logger. It was officially launched on 4th December 2019, on the first World Water Loss Day which was initiated by Gutermann and the IWA Water Loss Specialist Group and endorsed by the large industry associations IWA and AWWA.
NB-IoT is a new cellular communication standard optimised for machine-to-machine data communication in smart cities. NB-IoT significantly outperforms conventional 3G and 4G technology, as it consumes 5-10x less power and has significantly improved underground coverage. Telecom operators worldwide have announced plans for complete NB-IoT coverage and are in the process of activating their NB-IoT antennas throughout their networks.
The ZONESCAN NB-IoT logger is GUTERMANN’s first cellular logger and complements Gutermann’s RF-based ZONESCAN ALPHA system which has established itself as the leading fixed network technology and is used in over 300 cities around the world. ZONESCAN NB-IoT is a correlating system which means that the cloud-based ZONESCAN NET software automatically compares the data of all neighbouring sensors every day to identify even quiet leaks whose existence are not recognised by individual loggers.
A Correlation Indicator provides information about the area in which the leak has been identified, neatly displayed on a Google Maps™ enabled user interface. ZONESCAN NET also lets users see and manage their leak detection infrastructure, perform advanced leak analysis, import and display their GIS data, and change settings such as recording times, alarm thresholds and more.
Lucas Grolimund, CEO of Gutermann said: “We are excited about the launch of this product because we see an enormous potential for it given the connectivity and power properties of the NB-IoT technology. We’re happy to once more lead the way in advanced fixed network leak monitoring solutions. Our hope is that the ZONESCAN NB-IoT logger will make permanent monitoring of networks more accessible to utilities due to its cost, ease of installation and compact design. It should therefore contribute to the rapid growth of technology-enabled smart water networks, helping to consistently reduce and maintain lower water loss levels.”
New York tops the 12th annual list of the world’s most innovative cities, compiled by 2thinknow. The Big Apple leapfrogged last year’s leaders, Tokyo, London and San Francisco.
2thinknow said New York had embraced a “more human and sustainable lifestyle, start-up economy and new smart technologies” and was the winner despite Tokyo’s tech edge in burgeoning fields like robotics. New York’s Hudson Yards development and High Line park are symbols of how the city is managing to forge “a new way in innovation”, according to the analysts. 2thinknow said New York had embraced a “more human and sustainable lifestyle, start-up economy and new smart technologies” and was the winner despite Tokyo’s tech edge in burgeoning fields like robotics.
The Innovation Cities Index aims to measure the development of innovation economies globally. It is based on what 2thinknow defines as the three preconditions for innovation: cultural assets, human infrastructure and networked markets. 500 cities are benchmarked for the annual report, from 2thinknow’s City Benchmarking Data set of over 2,000 cities. 2thinknow scores cities on 162 indicators, including start-up economy, 13 mobility indicators, sustainability, neighbourhoods and technology, among others.
The top 10 New York, Tokyo, London, Los Angeles, Singapore, Paris, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, San Jose, Toronto, Movers and shakers For the first time, 11 of the top 20 cities in the Index are in the United States.
“What really surprised us this year was a United States bounce-back at the top of the league,” said Christopher Hire, Director of 2thinknow. “However, there were quite dramatic movements by cities up and down all across the USA, and globally as well – highlighting strong volatility and shortening the time window for commercialising new ideas.
” The remainder of the cities are in Europe and Asia. Singapore came in at number five thanks to its strong tech, mobility and infrastructure improvements. Paris follows at six, due to its recent rail refurbishment programmes and start-up sector, which 2thinknow said are “a symbol of some resurgent French innovation”.
Los Angeles’ strong entertainment and tech sector saw it climb one place to fourth position. Chicago entered the top ten for the first time, noted for its burgeoning start-ups, innovation seeding across many industries, a sustainable food scene and top-ranked universities. Boston, meanwhile, has remained in the global top ten every year the ranking has been published. Detroit moved up 25 places, which 2thinknow put down to the mobility sector becoming more important to the global economy.
Detroit moved up 25 places, which 2thinknow put down to the mobility sector becoming more important to the global economy. Other US cities moving up more than 25 places included Louisville (Kentucky), Dayton (Ohio) and San Antonio (Texas). UK’s hidden gems, Africa’s rising tide In Asia, despite the trade dispute, Chinese cities Shenzhen (53) and Beijing (up 11 places to 26) both rose for innovation. Jakarta (119) rose 58 places based on its start-up sector, growth and new reforms. Predictably, London dominates the UK rankings but several other cities stand out too, including Birmingham (up 23 places), Nottingham (up 44 places) and Newcastle (up 19 places).
In Europe, German cities are led by Berlin (12), followed by Munich (27, down 6 places) and Hamburg (46). Barcelona regained its long-term innovation status, rising to 21st globally, ahead of Madrid in 28th place. In Australia, Melbourne (11) became the top city in Australia, beating Sydney (15) for the first time in the list. Although African cities continue to be among the lowest-ranked, there are signs of a “rising tide”. The average ranking of top African cities rose two per cent. Keeping up “Our Index is designed to measure innovation conditions and often predicts rising cities before other rankings. It is up to the city whether they can keep on top of the latest trends and exploit their innovation potential [on an ongoing basis]. Cities that place well every year do that, which is not as simple as it sounds for urban areas to adapt and transform,” said Hire.
Source: Sarah Wray-Smart Cities World
Sierra Wireless, the leading IoT solutions provider that combines devices, network and software to unlock value in the connected economy, today announced that its smart IoT connectivity solution is enabling global communications for France Télévisions, the main public broadcaster in France, ensuring global connectivity for its broadcast journalists around the world.
Previously, reporters had to buy local SIM cards in each country in order to broadcast their TV reports. Sierra Wireless’ smart IoT connectivity solution automatically connects to the best available 2G, 3G, or LTE network in a given region, without the need for installing a local SIM card and configuring the equipment. France Télévisions’ cameras and distribution equipment are always “ready to use” to reliably broadcast news reports from wherever news breaks. France Télévisions can also manage its subscriptions in the cloud, using the AirVantage™ Platform.
Cédric Masset, France Télévisions’ head of the projects department for national newsrooms, said: “Reporters previously had to buy and set up the SIM card locally to be able to upload their video reports to France Télévisions systems. Sierra Wireless’ IoT connectivity has exceeded our expectations. It saves our staff a significant amount of time and hassle and provides the capacity for reporters to share news far more rapidly.”
Marc Overton, Chief Solutions Officer, Sierra Wireless, said: “No matter where in the world a newsworthy event is taking place, Sierra Wireless’ smart IoT connectivity ensures France Télévisions reporters are ready to broadcast whenever and wherever they need to.”
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According to a new research report by IoT analyst firm Berg Insight, the number of users of carsharing services worldwide is forecasted to grow from 50.4 million people in 2018 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 35.1 percent to reach 227.1 million people in 2023.
Berg Insight forecasts that the number of cars used for carsharing services will grow at a CAGR of 29.2 percent from 332,000 at the end of 2018 to 1.2 million at the end of 2023.
Carsharing is one of many car-based mobility services that have become available for people that want to complement other modes of transportation with car-based mobility occasionally. Examples of other car-based mobility services include traditional car rental, carpooling, ridesharing, taxi and ridesourcing services.
Carsharing is a decentralised car rental service focusing on short term rentals. CarSharing Organisations (CSOs) offer members access to a fleet of shared cars 24/7 from unattended self-service locations. Usage is billed by the minute/hour and by distance driven, with rates that include fuel, insurance and maintenance. Today, most CSOs use station-based networks with roundtrip rental. This operational model requires members to return a vehicle to the same designated station from which it was accessed. Some CSOs have also started to offer one-way carsharing that enables users to return the car to any station operated by the CSO.
Another model that is rapidly gaining in popularity is free floating carsharing, which enables members to pick up and drop off cars anywhere within a designated area. Leading vendors of hardware and software platforms enabling carsharing services include INVERS, Convadis, Omoove, Wunder Mobility, OTA Keys, Vulog, Ridecell, Targa Telematics and Mobility Tech Green. Several carsharing technology vendors are also targeting the emerging corporate carsharing market which can be used by corporations to increase corporate car pool availability and reduce mobility costs.
Carsharing services are offered by specialist carsharing companies, car rental companies, carmakers, as well as other players such as public transport operators. “During the past year, carmakers have been very active and launched new carsharing services”, said Martin Svegander, IoT Analyst at Berg Insight.
In February 2019, Daimler and BMW formally merged Car2go and DriveNow under the SHARE NOW brand. The Car2go app rebranded to SHARE NOW this November and the integration work will continue in 2020, starting in cities where both Car2go and DriveNow are present.
Other carmakers including Volkswagen (WeShare), PSA Group (Free2Move) and Volvo Cars (M) have also launched new carsharing initiatives in 2018–2019.
Car rental CSOs include Ubeeqo (owned by Europcar Mobility Group), Sixt Share (Sixt) as well as Zipcar (owned by Avis Budget Group).
Mr. Svegander concluded:
“Specialised carsharing providers such as EVCard, GoFun, GreenWheels, Pand Auto, Mobility Carsharing, Enjoy, Communauto, Socar, Delimobil and many others accounted for about 72 percent of the carsharing members and managed close to 70 percent of the carsharing fleet worldwide at the end of 2018.”
- London’s Smart Mobility Living Lab (SMLL) aims to put the UK in the lead to test and validate self-driving car technologies.
- Experts from TRL, DG Cities, Cisco, Loughborough University and O2 provide critical services enabling trials of driverless vehicles and smart transport systems at Royal Borough of Greenwich and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
- O2’s involvement supports operator’s commitment to support businesses looking to explore the potential of 5G in the mobility sector.
O2 has signed an agreement to provide 5G connectivity for the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) in the world’s most advanced urban testbed, the Smart Mobility Living Lab (SMLL) in London.
O2’s 3.4GHz 5G-ready spectrum will enable car manufacturers, self-driving technology companies, start-ups as well as other private and public organisations involved in the transport ecosystem to test both vehicle to vehicle (V2V) and vehicle to road communications (V2X) in a real-world environment.
SMLL is a government backed CAV testbed based in the Royal Borough of Greenwich and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, created with the aim of building safer, more intelligent and better joined-up transport systems. It comprises world leading expertise from across the transport and technology sectors including TRL, Cisco, DG Cities, London Legacy Development Corporation, Cubic Transportation Systems and Loughborough University. O2 has now agreed to collaborate with SMLL to provide 5G connectivity to the testbed.
5G’s role in supporting CAV and intelligent transport systems
Many transport experts believe 5G is the key to unlocking the potential of self-driving vehicles’ potential. There are three stand-out reasons for this – the extra speed of 5G, its ability to connect with many more devices at once, and a far lower latency, meaning data sent between two 5G devices is almost instantaneous.
The high capacity of 5G also allows for vehicles to transmit large amounts of data, including 4K video, to intelligent cloud-based transport systems, which are expected to improve road safety and help traffic authorities to monitor and manage traffic flow.
Brendan O’Reilly, O2’s Chief Technology Officer, said, “At O2 we’re determined to help businesses of all sizes realise the potential of fifth-generation mobile technology. We know that the transport sector is going to be one of the key beneficiaries of 5G – and that the technology has the potential to reduce traffic congestion, as well as making journeys safer and more enjoyable. That’s why we’re excited to be working with the teams at the Smart Mobility Living Lab, who are driving forward our understanding how this next generation technology will fundamentally change the fabric of the cities in which we live and work as well as creating entirely new methods of travel.”
Paul Campion, CEO of TRL, said: “5G is a technology that supports a successful rollout of self-driving cars in the UK. Smart Mobility Living Lab (SMLL) research shows that over a third of industry leaders from the transport, technology and automotive industries think investment in strengthening the UK’s digital infrastructure is a key step for making self-driving cars commercially available in the UK. By working with industry leader O2, we are ensuring that SMLL is not just a real-world testing environment for self-driving cars today; we are future-proofing the testbed so that we can accelerate our customers’ research and development programmes.”
Trevor Dorling, Managing Director of DG Cities, said: “Connected and autonomous vehicles are an emerging technology with the potential to address some of the key challenges cities face. The ‘connected’, in connected and autonomous vehicles is critically important as it enables advanced safety features such as vulnerable road user alerts or dangerous intersection warnings to work, making city streets safer. 5G underpins these use cases and offers further benefits to people and businesses. This latest collaboration with O2 and SMLL will enable us to better understand the potential applications of this new technology.
O2 continues to power UK’s self-driving trials
O2’s Smart Cities report highlighted a number of compelling ways in which 5G can help the UK economy. This included how a 5G-enabled road management system, able to respond to traffic pressures at unprecedented speeds, will reduce the time motorists spend stuck in traffic by 10%, save the economy £880 million a year, and reduce CO2 emissions by 370,000 metric tonnes per year.
In July, O2 announced its ‘Smart Ambulance’ trial to revolutionise patient treatment and reduce hospital numbers. The trial, which began this month, involves equipping a standard ambulance with state-of-the-art devices and connectivity, transforming the vehicle into a unique remote consultation room. In June, O2 also announced that it is preparing to test satellite safety systems for 5G driverless cars in Oxfordshire in partnership with the European and British space agencies. This follows the news earlier this year that O2 will use its 5G network to power autonomous vehicle testing at the Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire.
SMLL uses public and private roads in London. In doing so it has created the most advanced urban testing environment for autonomous transport systems and the opportunities presented by the latest 5G technologies from O2.
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Three UK to support Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) across its networkLPWA enables Three UK to service deep coverage, low power needs of the Massive IoT marketRealtime data provided by IoT networks will enable utility companies to improve service, enhance billing accuracy and reduce carbon emissionsThree’s enterprise offer set to expand to full provision of IoT technologies
Three UK and CKH Innovations Opportunities Development (CKH IOD, a unit of CK Hutchison’s telecom division) are piloting a Low Power Wide Area network (LPWA), which is the first step in a nationwide network roll out that will support mass deployment of Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
LPWA networks – made up of Narrowband IoT and LTE-M technologies – provide a cost-effective way to wirelessly connect IoT devices which monitor and control everything from key infrastructure to smart buttons. Sectors such as energy, logistics, building management, and transport can be digitally transformed by LPWA technologies.
IoT devices used in these sectors are generally deployed on a massive scale. Often, the devices need to be placed in difficult environments for wireless (or wired) connections. LPWA technology solves this connectivity challenge in three ways: it covers a large area; the radio signal penetrates deep inside buildings and underground, where infrastructure IoT devices are often placed; and low-energy NB-IoT devices can last 5 or more years in the field. LPWA devices can operate without a fixed power source, meaning they can remain in situ and maintenance free for long periods.
The Three UK LPWA pilot network has been set up at the Integrated Transport Electricity Gas Research Laboratory in Gateshead UK (InTEGReL). The lab is a collaboration between Northern Gas Networks, Newcastle University, Northern Powergrid, Northumbrian Water and Siemens.
The LPWA at InTEGReL will enable researchers to deploy wireless devices throughout the experimental energy network to identify problems and gather performance data. In a live environment, LPWA technology helps energy companies improve service reliability, detect faults, make customer billing more accurate and lower carbon emissions.
Three UK’s Wholesale division currently provides IoT connectivity to partners such as ARM, Arkessa, AT&T, Wireless Logic and Mobius. These partnerships allow Three to target IoT industry verticals including retail, transport, logistics, infrastructure and utilities. The LPWA network enables Three Wholesale to extend the portfolio of services that it offers and work with a range of customers on new use cases which require low bandwidth and wide coverage.
Three UK will draw on extensive LPWA experience CKH IOD has acquired with other CK Hutchison telecoms companies – Three Austria, Sweden and Hong Kong. In Austria, for example, LPWA technology is used by a range of companies in energy, transport, logistics and building management to track assets and monitor energy usage. Three Sweden were the first mobile network in Sweden to launch narrow-band IoT services nationally and are actively partnering with Utility providers on smart-metering applications.
Darren King, Head of Business Development at Three Wholesale said: “The launch of our LPWA pilot is an exciting development for Three UK, giving our Enterprise customers access to a broader range of services. The low power, long battery life and excellent reach of LPWA technology has great potential to support companies in any industry where companies need continuous information from their infrastructure in order to optimise service. We expect that we will be able to start offering LPWA services to a range of industries over the next few years, as we extend the sectors we offer the service in.”
Matthew Little, Innovation, Information and Improvement Director, Northern Gas Networks, said: “LPWA offers huge potential for the gas industry. Real-time data from our infrastructure flowing into advanced data analytics models will allow us to take fast, agile and even pre-emptive action to deliver outstanding customer value whilst maintaining the highest level of resilience, which will be more important than ever as we transition to a low carbon energy network.
Our industry needs new technologies such as this to support our ambitions to decarbonise gas systems, through projects such as H21 to transition to hydrogen for heat and meet the UK Net Zero target by 2050.”
Nigel Watson, CIO Northumbria Water, said LPWA will be an enabler for the delivery of the company’s strategic objectives. “We recognise the power of innovative technologies to enhance what we’re already doing. IoT is a key tool for us to detect and proactively respond to the impacts of climate change,” he said. “We’re excited to be involved in the LPWA IoT test bed and look forward to the learnings it will provide.”
Bridging the information gap about machine usage
Professional coffee machines are normally sold with a maintenance contract. Manufacturers usually do not know how coffee shops use their machines, e.g. whether a machine serves 2 or 60 cups of coffee per hour. Without real-time data to monitor machine usage, technicians are sent to shops on a monthly basis which may be too frequent for some machines, or too little for machines that serve a lot of coffee.
Connecting coffee machines to the cloud
Based on embedded sensors and qiio’s IoT connectivity hardware and cloud platform, Thermoplan is now able to remotely monitor machine usage and other critical parameters in real-time. As a result, they only need to send out technicians when maintenance is actually required, saving on average one service visit per machine per year. With thousands of machines installed, this results in an annual cost savings in the millions of dollars.
“Our client expects smoothly running machines with minimum down-time”, said Sylvia Schoeberl, Head of Marketing, “For Thermoplan, maintenance is a significant part of overall costs. With qiio’s IoT solution, we have achieved the optimum balance between the two, resulting in a reliable, uninterrupted supply of great-tasting coffee which is the foundation of our client’s business.”
“Thermoplan’s huge installed base of professional coffee machines is precisely the type of application where qiio’s IoT solutions excel,” said Felix Adamczyk, CEO at qiio, “We handle the complexity of remote asset management, allowing Thermoplan to focus on their core business – enabling their clients to deliver the best coffee experience to consumers quickly, reliably and cost-effectively.”
qiio: taking the complexity out of IoT connectivity
To complete Thermoplan’s coffee machine IoT monitoring system, they looked to qiio to provide a secure, “plug and play” wireless connectivity solution and cloud-based monitoring platform. Based on qiio’s “IoT Concentrator” hardware and secure WiFi connectivity solution, sensor data is collected, concentrated, encrypted and relayed directly to a secure cloud platform hosting qiio’s remote monitoring dashboard. qiio’s solution includes a seamless migration path from WiFi to cellular connectivity, providing future-proof IoT connectivity for machines located in even the most remote locations.
qiio provides complete, end-to-end IoT solutions including hardware, software, connectivity, cloud services, and operation. Everything customers need to securely connect, monitor and control their products via an online dashboard is delivered. We take the complexity out of the IoT, creating “off-the-shelf” solutions customized to customer requirements within 4-8 weeks. With headquarters in Zürich, Switzerland, qiio’s technology is ideal for logistics, remote monitoring and predictive maintenance. Visit www.qiio.com for details.
Founded in 1974 in Weggis, Switzerland, Thermoplan produces premium, fully automatic coffee machines in modern design for the high demands of the worldwide hotel, restaurant and gastronomy sector. Each coffee machine we produce is a masterpiece – our employees guarantee premium craftsmanship as part of their Swiss work ethic and professional pride. Thermoplan is represented in 75 countries by professional business partners and manages a global network of over 200 certified distribution and service partners. www.thermoplan.ch