The final of the anual Co-Star table football tournament was once again contested by Matt Hancock representing Manchester United and Tim Cosgrove representing Leeds United one of footballs most fiercest rivalries.
Security was tight due to previous instances of crowd trouble that have marred previous games by the bitter rivals and the Police requested an early kick-off as a precaution.
The battle of the roses clash was fiercely contested over five very close legs in an electric atmosphere. The final game in the series was a cracker and the air was filled with nervous tension causing players from both teams to make mistakes. Hancock edged it by one goal to claim his third title.
Congratulations to Matt and Tim you need to put extra hours training in for next years tournament!
Forward-Thinking Retailers Depend on Agile, Dependable Networks More Than Ever
In retail, smart stores and connected everything have captured the attention of the public as well as the technology community. Retailers are leading the way in testing and implementing customer engagement and operations strategies that someday will be adopted across virtually all industries.
In turn, retail enterprises are moving away from legacy network technologies and toward solutions engineered for the complexities of IoT, high-bandwidth usage, and the fluctuating needs of companies that must be able to change direction on a dime.
Customer Engagement Technologies
One area ripe for testing and implementing smart retail technologies is customer engagement efforts. Today’s customers demand personalized, interactive experiences that seamlessly connect the online and in-store experience. Emerging smart store technologies are designed to strengthen and deepen the retailer’s relationship with the customer.
Examples of relationship-enhancing technologies include:
Facial recognition technology: In-store cameras and video analytics software recognize a customer’s face and serve up offers customized to that individual’s preferences and buying history.
Interactive mirrors: These smart mirrors allow customers to see how a certain clothing item would fit without ever trying it on. These mirrors also leverage RFID tracking to help capture customer behavior, recording data regarding how long customers spend in dressing rooms, how they behave when an item doesn’t fit, and which items they are most likely to purchase.
Smart shelves: These devices recognize when customers pick up items and whether they put them back down, allowing retailers to gather behavioral data and make better decisions around pricing and merchandising.
Robotics: Customer service robots greet customers as they enter stores, sometimes using facial recognition technology to deliver tailored messages. Robots can also be used to fetch and deliver items to customers.
Seamless checkout: Using RFID and/or video analytics technology, retailers allow customers to check out without standing in line or even scanning items. Customers may use an app on their phones to confirm their purchases and pay.
Whereas customer-facing technologies help retailers increase revenue, operations-facing technologies reduce expenditures and improve efficiency.
Often, retailers adopt customer-facing technologies that can serve a dual operational purpose. Examples of emerging operational technologies include:
Advanced HVAC and lighting controls: These systems can be programmed and controlled remotely. A more recent development in such systems is the ability to enable automatic adjustments based on exterior conditions such as temperature and weather. Some smart power controls can actually react to happenings on the power grid, such as rolling brownouts, and adjust accordingly.
Advanced loss prevention: Retailers can use the same video analytics technology for both customer recognition — as outlined above — and retail loss prevention.
Interactive digital signage: The same signage used to present varied content to customers can also be used for employee training and video conferencing.
Robotics: Robots track and move merchandise in warehouses, allowing retailers to fulfill more online orders and more efficiently manage shipments to brick-and-mortar locations.
Cradlepoint 4G LTE Connected devices and software are available from Co-Star.
Innovative service approach keeping the country’s traffic moving is about to get a whole lot smarter.
Congratulations from everyone at Co-Star to Telent for winning the Smart Higway contact.
Highways England has awarded a contract worth nearly half a billion pounds to leading UK technology and network services company, telent Technology Services, to help keep England moving into the future.
Highways England today announced it has awarded the contract for the operation and management of NRTS (National Roads Telecommunication Services), a critical component of national infrastructure supporting the country’s 4,400 mile strategic road network, to telent Technology Services Ltd (telent).
The contract will see telent take over the current NRTS network and provide an end-to-end managed service from the 24-hour network operations centre at Quinton, Birmingham. Field services will transition from the current suppliers to telent, including current staff that will transfer under TUPE to join the telent team.
Additionally, telecommunications project works involving changes to and extensions of the network to support the government’s Road Investment Strategy, including telecommunications services supporting the rollout of smart motorways and expressways will transfer to telent.
From spring 2018, telent, together with its world class technology partners, will collaborate with Highways England to transform the NRTS network and roll-out innovative, world-class, carrier grade network technology, which will support the provision of new telecommunication services. This will increase safety for road workers and users, help ensure that drivers and their passengers can travel with minimal delays, and facilitate the development of future communications-based services alongside the strategic road network.
telent CEO, Mark Plato, said: “This large, 7 year contract is an outstanding accomplishment. With telent’s proven capability designing, delivering and supporting England’s critical national infrastructure, we are uniquely positioned to support Highways England who we have had a relationship with for over 20 years. We are excited to begin work transforming the NRTS network, ensuring we deliver a service that consistently upholds health and safety standards and delivers the required performance.
“Our technology innovation of NRTS will provide a world class, superfast network to support Highways England’s plans for upgrading the strategic road network. The scale and capability of the transformed NRTS network will be on a par with all but the very largest ISPs’ networks, and this reflects telent’ proven track record of working with service providers to transform their networks.”
NRTS is used to connect Highways England’s seven regional control centres with over 30,000 roadside devices, including CCTV cameras, message signs, emergency roadside phones and smart motorway equipment. Today NRTS comprises approximately 6,000 miles of fibre and copper networks, 145 transmission stations and almost 5,000 roadside cabinets.
Highways England’s requirements for the new contract included effective service continuity and the ability to undertake a transformation programme without impacting on the service, whilst also reducing roadside maintenance activity. The upgraded programme will improve reliability, increase remote services, and support the introduction of new services such as wireless and IP CCTV.
Chief Information Officer at Highways England, Tony Malone said:
“We are pleased to announce the award of the second National Roads Telecommunications Service contract to telent Technology Services Ltd. With their proactive approach to innovation and collaboration, they will help Highways England deliver a service that will provide improvements in safety, customer service and delivery, as well as enable us to support emerging technologies such as connected vehicles and 5G.”
Software-Defined Perimeter solution works over any wired and wireless Internet connection to protect devices against attacks and isolate them from IT infrastructure
Cradlepoint, have announced the general release of its NetCloud Perimeter service, a Software-Defined Perimeter solution that provides a private cloud network over any Internet connection to secure and isolate connected devices, including M2M, IoT and mobile devices. NetCloud Perimeter provides a modern, cloud-based alternative to traditional VPN technology that is easier to configure, deploy and scale.
A recent Cradlepoint-sponsored State-of-IoT report conducted by Spiceworks found 69 percent of the 400 businesses surveyed with 500 or more employees have deployed or plan to deploy IoT solutions within the next year. IoT is being adopted across a range of industries such as retail, manufacturing, healthcare and government. Of the deployment concerns cited in the survey, security and solution cost ranked highest at 41 percent and 35 percent .
Despite security concerns, 49 percent of businesses surveyed have deployed IoT devices on their existing enterprise network – creating a sizeable attack surface and new threat vectors that traditional network security tools can’t cover. For example, Internet-accessible security cameras can become infected by bot-net attacks, like Mirai, Reaper and IoTroop, and enable pivot attacks into enterprise IT systems.
“The growth of the IoT means the deployment of many more network-connected devices. For many organizations that don’t have the correct solutions in place, this is opening up more entry points for hackers to exploit, and leading to major security issues,” said Christian Renaud, research director, Internet of Things, 451 Research. “Organizations need to consider which network they run their IoT service on, and then ensure they manage the security of these networks, the IoT devices they plan to use and proactively protect themselves before any potential threats even appear.”
Connect, Protect and Isolate M2M, IoT and Mobile Devices
NetCloud Perimeter, part of Cradlepoint’s NetCloud platform, is a cloud service that shields enterprises from connected device threats by providing a private cloud network that overlay the Internet or enterprise network with a virtual perimeter to isolates and protects M2M, IoT and mobile devices. It further provides a closed, invitation-only network with its own private IP address space to cloak devices from the outside world.
Other unique benefits of NetCloud Perimeter include:
Simple to configure and deploy in minutes
Global footprint that is accessible from any wired or wireless connection
End-to-end visibility and control through NetCloud Manager
Micro-segment M2M, IoT and mobile devices by user, device and application
Configurable secure Internet egress protected by integral firewall and carrier-grade NAT
Active Directory and private DNS server integration shields against DNS-related threats.
When deployed over 4G LTE, NetCloud Perimeter’s encrypted and fully switched overlays can reduce the need for costly and complex private Access Point Networks (APNs) and static IPv4 addresses that are scarce on many cellular networks.
“The way you connect and protect an IoT device network with potentially hundreds of thousands of Internet-attached endpoints is very different from the traditional enterprise security model for branch sites and WinTel PCs”, said Ken Hosac, vice president of Cradlepoint IoT Solutions and Ecosystem. “NetCloud Perimeter represents a clean-slate approach to device networking that combines a Software-Defined Perimeter architecture with private IP overlays and cloud orchestration to deliver optimal security, availability and control as well as logical isolation from the Internet and private networks”.
Other common use cases for NetCloud Perimeter include: secure remote access for mobile field-based workforces, remote management of field-based devices, persistent connectivity for in-vehicle notebooks and tablets, and in-branch isolation of devices such as point-of-sales (PoS) machines, security camera and digital signage.
DSC Dredge is a NetCloud Perimeter customer and the global leader in the manufacture of custom dredging solutions, some as large as a football field and capable of dredging rock up to 150 feet below the earth’s surface. These advanced machines are highly automated and leverage an on-board network to connect six programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and two human machine interfaces (HMIs) as well as multiple security cameras. DSC uses NetCloud Perimeter via Cradlepoint 4G LTE routers to gather telemetry data, monitor dredge operations and provide remote system maintenance from dredges deployed around the world.
“With SD-Perimeter, we don’t have to be in the office, at the other end of an IPsec tunnel, to access our network. We have an easy and secure way to remotely access our devices anytime, anywhere,” said Richard Groce, director of information technology for DSC Dredge.
About NetCloud Perimeter
NetCloud Perimeter is deployed within a broad number of customers and industries today, including: field services, healthcare, public sector, manufacturing and smart cities. It is available as part of Cradlepoint NetCloud annual subscriptions and supports both client-based and integrated gateway deployments on select Cradlepoint COR-Series and AER-Series routers. Click here for more information.
Co-Star the Harrogate based Global supplier to the ICT industry have added the latest Micro 3 fuse holder to their range of installation products for after market Telematics and Mobile Communications Equipment.
The latest vehicles are fitted with an increasing range of on-board connected devices which puts demands on wiring systems installed in confined spaces. The Micro 3 add-a-circuit fuse holder has been designed with this in mind housing two fuse elements in a width of just 15mm allowing more circuits to be added in smaller space. The three spade terminals have a width of 2.8mm and an overall width of 13mm.
The Micro 3 fuse holder can be used with the following fuse ratings:
Cities & Regions Connect People, Places & Things While Leveraging Data
Cities and public-sector IT personnel must balance a unique combination of community expectations, budget limitations, and employee capacity. As cities become smarter and more connected, community members financially responsible growth. At the same time, it is common for cities to struggle with budgets and for elected officials to be held accountable by the public to ensure they are investing wisely and in ways that have a noticeable impact.
As technology continues to evolve, cities are evolving in parallel. A Smart City, according to Gartner, is “an urbanized area where multiple sectors cooperate to achieve sustainable outcomes through the analysis of contextual real-time information shared among sector-specific information and operational technology systems.”
Broadly speaking, Smart Cities use technology to collect data, analyze information, share results with different departments, and use those results to drive improvement. They understand how the combination of innovation, technology, and collaboration can truly improve the quality of life and the economic well-being of their citizens and businesses.
The effects of 4G LTE and Software-defined Networking (SD-N) have been profound within this context. The potential for connected people, places, and things has enabled cities to provide a deep and vast array of services in many different areas. Today cities are connecting:
K-12 public schools, students, and faculty
Public recreation centers and other amenities, such as golf courses
Fare boxes, passenger WiFi, digital signage, and surveillance cameras on buses in major metro systems
Cameras and tracking sensors/RFID tags on school buses
Police cars, laptops, body-worn cameras, dash cameras, evidence collection kits, and even IoT sensors to a city’s secure, private network
Search and rescue mobile vehicles, particularly those in remote locations
Code enforcement and building inspector vehicles, which traditionally serve as remote offices for city employees and contractors
Ambulances, stroke kits, and first responders to doctors local at hospitals
Traffic cameras, traffic light controllers, and cameras at intersections
Public trash compactors and recycling bins, allowing cities to be more efficient in how often receptacles need to be emptied
Digital signs that provide live route maps for public transportation users
Payment kiosks for citizens wishing to pay for city services out in the field
Election machines at precinct locations
Sensors for large public events that can be used to look for any kind of public safety threat
These services are increasingly essential to a city’s infrastructure. For example, Gartner predicts that by 2020, “streetlamps will be the primary infrastructure for 80 percent of Smart Cities.” While full of potential, these streetlamps can’t fully function as needed without reliable connectivity solutions. Flexible lighting allows city employees to remotely control switches and dimming devices, thereby enabling efficient, timely management. Video cameras and sensors attached to streetlamps also allow cities the ability to track — in real time — which streets have been plowed during inclement weather.
Without reliable 4G LTE connectivity, along with devices such as routers that can withstand the elements and be updated through the cloud, cities may focus too heavily on becoming a Smart City without paying enough attention to the logistics needed to fully get there.
When cities do fully implement reliable and secure 4G LTE and/or SDN solutions, the effects can be tremendous. The City of San Antonio understood the importance of becoming a Smart City and utilized 4G LTE to assist with traffic management. With more than 1.4 million people and further growth expected, transportation infrastructure is becoming increasingly critical to the city’s quality of life. Its Traffic Management Center needed remote access to monitor key applications, troubleshoot problems, and adjust traffic flow mechanisms (such as timers) in real time. In a city of this size, manual adjustments were no longer a reasonable solution.
By installing Cradlepoint’s cloud-managed routing platforms in nearly 700 traffic cabinets and utilizing 4G LTE, San Antonio now has constant connectivity for reliable access, streamlined network troubleshooting and real-time management, easy physical access, and the potential to scale up the network and applications.
The City of Boise helped its police department further advance the city toward Smart City status by updating its in-vehicle systems. The department upgraded its devices and implemented NetCloud Manager to enable central configuration, monitoring, and management. Whereas it previously took the city as many as 160 staff hours to complete network updates for the whole police cruiser fleet, it now takes approximately 5 minutes with remote cloud management. The cost savings, efficient use of officer resources, reliability, central network management, network flexibility, and future-proofing of these solutions allow the police department to evolve its technological infrastructure while demonstrating to the public its responsible use of valuable resources.
As 5G, often referred to as “next-generation WAN,” becomes more readily available, Smart Cities will have both the opportunity and the obligation to explore how a drastic increase in speeds, combined with a drastic decrease in latency, can better empower their infrastructure, services, and personnel.
The ways in which cities become “smart” depends heavily on the wireless connectivity, devices, and networking infrastructure solutions available to and adopted by IT professionals and approved by city leaders. In essence, the effects of 4G LTE, 5G, IoT, and SDN are only as powerful as the solutions that utilize them.
Co-Star to Showcase Latest Technologies at FCS Business Radio 2017
Co-Star, the UK’s leading supplier to the ICT industry will be supporting the FCS Business Radio and Vehicle Technology Installer events at Chateau Impney Droitwich Spa on the 16th November.
This unique event for the mobile communiccations industry sets out to encompass the latest developments and emerging oppurtunities for the future.
Co-Star will be sowcasing the latest mobile communications technologies including: 4G LTE Wireless Routers from Cradlepoint, Sierra Wireless and Encore, the latest High Speed Data and RF Connectors, RAM Mounting Solutions, and USB Power Supplies.
The programme for the events includes:
The latest FITAS news from Jason McComb.
Petrochemical Regulation ESN Updates from John Thompson.
Co-Star, the UK’s leading supplier to the mobile communications industry will be exhibiting at the FCS Business Radio and Vehicle Technology Installer event at Chateau Impney Droitwich Spa on the 16th November.
Co-Star will be sowcasing the latest mobile communications technologies including: Cradlepoint and Sierra Wireless Routers, 4G LTE Antennas, RAM Mounting Solutions, HSD Connectors, Twin Port FAKRA Connectors and USB Power Supplies.
This unique event for the communiccations industry sets out to encompass the latest developments and emerging oppurtunities for the future.
For more information on the event please contact the FCS.
How Remote Connect Provides New Levels of Cloud Management
IT Administrators Can Manage Nearly Any LAN Device Through NetCloud Manager
The scope of things that organizations must connect to their enterprises network continues to expand, with seemingly no end in sight. In response, there are exciting new options for network administrators and IT teams to simply and securely access, manage, and troubleshoot virtually any device — from routers to just about anything that lives on the LAN.
Cradlepoint’s NetCloud Manager Remote Connect allows IT administrators to instantly and securely access devices remotely through the cloud. Remote Connect gives IT administrators a suite of functionality including secure, real-time remote cloud management of both Cradlepoint devices and third-party, LAN-connected devices — allowing them to be cloud managed from a single pane of glass with no additional setup.
Remotely Connect to LAN Devices
Remote Connect LAN Manager allows administrators to connect to nearly any device that can get an IP address on the LAN through Cradlepoint NetCloud Manager (NCM). Essentially, this makes third-party devices that previously were inaccessible now capable of being managed securely through the cloud — without any additional software or hardware.
Until now, management of devices on the LAN — everything from switches and access points to security cameras and digital signs — has been complex, to say the least. IT specialists had to set up a variety of complex routing rules, port forwarding, and more, plus they potentially had to purchase third-party software for each and every device.
Today, the entire process is simpler — in the cloud — through Remote Connect. Once plugged in, a device that lives behind a router on the LAN is accessible from anywhere in the world through NCM’s single pane of glass. That device, with its IP address and host name, immediately appears in the NCM platform; the IT team can make it cloud managed with one click.
The cost savings potential of Remote Connect are vast, as IT managers can avoid purchasing individual cloud management services for the rapidly growing list of devices on their network. They can also avoid on-site IT or truck rolls for troubleshooting, setup, and diagnostics of devices that were previously inaccessible, accept from the LAN.
Advanced Out-of-Band Management (OOBM)
With a traditional network architecture, when wired-line connectivity is down, an IT team cannot manage the primary router. However, if the organization is using a Cradlepoint router for failover LTE connectivity, an IT professional can use advanced OOBM to traverse through a Cradlepoint router and troubleshoot or config any generic primary router remotely (or any device with a serial console port).
Advanced OOBM affords IT staff the same capabilities as if they were sitting next to and plugged into the primary router — regardless of whether the wired line is up or down. Then the IT staff can troubleshoot and determine — if not implement — potential fixes.
The business benefits and ROI of advanced OOBM are substantial, including the ability to troubleshoot and repair the primary router without sending someone to the location. OOBM also eliminates the need to rely on a non-IT, on-site employee to help with troubleshooting and eliminates the monthly POTS (analog) circuit subscription for OOBM.
Robust Real-Time Info & Troubleshooting
Each Cradlepoint router runs the NetCloud Operating System (NetCloud OS), which network administrators now can access remotely via Remote Connect for robust real-time statuses, troubleshooting information, and logs.
Router-level data available through NCM’s Remote Connect GUI is more fine grain, including information such as Connection Manager interface status, VPN tunnel status, router tables, system logs, connected client list, firewall tracking and hit counter, and many more. Also, access is highly secure, with no static IP or open SSH / SSL ports required.
It’s just like local access to each router’s UI — but anytime, from anywhere, through the cloud. Organizations can leverage this service for highly valuable real-time trouble-shooting, with always-available insights into routing tables, which clients are connected, and how much data clients are using.
Router Console Access
Remote Connect allows IT teams to connect remotely to the console of a Cradlepoint router, and recently this feature has undergone some improvements. Now the data available to IT departments through CLI access is more in-depth than ever. Access to more robust real-time analytics is particularly helpful for troubleshooting. Suspected router issues such as slow service or misdirected traffic can be viewed via real-time routing tables. This real-time data stream means IT professionals can provide real-time fixes as well.
Additional Software-Defined Solutions
Many organizations today are looking to not only perform device administration and management remotely, but to actually create an easy, flexible, instant, secure network over commodity Internet from anywhere at any time. NetCloud Engine, Cradlepoint’s Software-Defined Perimeter (SD-P) solution, allows IT teams to instantly create always-on Virtual Cloud Networks over any Internet connection that allows IoT devices, administrators, and resources to have constant communication with each other.
Co-Star supply the full range of Cradlepoint Software and 4G LTE & WiFi Routers. For more information please click here
FAKRA connectors (FAKRA = FAchKReis Automobil, a german automobile working group) are
coaxial high-frequency connectors that meet the requirements of DIN20860 and USCAR 17 &18.
Their application lies in the transmission of a variety of signals, such as shortwave, mobile telephony, GPS, or telematics signals.
Male Code Z Universal RG58
Available in male or female for both RG174 and RG58 coaxial cable the FAKRA connectors are used by vehicle manufacturers, Telematics companies and installers of after-market mobile communications equipment.
The water blue code Z is a universal FAKRA that can be used for all types of application and is particularly common for DAB, Audio and Telematics equipment.
Available for RG174 or RG58 Coaxial Cable.
Code Z universal – Can be used for all FAKRA applications.
Male and Female versions available.
Tim Cosgrove of Co-Star commected;
” Co-Star have experienced a high demand for the dual-port FAKRA connectors from vehicle manufacturers and companies who install telematics equipment. We supply the code Z universal version as it simplifies the installation process and can be used for all types of applications allowing our customers to standardise and just stock one type of connector”