Siemens Partners With Amazon as It Ramps Up Industrial Software Platform

Siemens Partners With Amazon as It Ramps Up Industrial Software Platform

Siemens is partnering with Amazon as it accelerates the rollout of its MindSphere industrial software platform, the core of its bid to dominate the market in digital factory automation.

The German group’s next version of MindSphere, to be launched in January, will run on Amazon Web Services (AWS) – the most popular cloud system with industrial software developers.

“Many customers appreciate it very much,” Siemens Chief Technology Officer Roland Busch told reporters and analysts at a company presentation in Munich on Friday. “You have to really scale up in order to justify your money.”

So far, MindSphere has run on the SAP cloud, and from April it will also run on Microsoft’s Azure.

MindSphere gathers data from devices, analyses the information and uses it to help customers optimise processes. Attracting a critical mass of developers to work on the platform is crucial to improving the quality of software applications.

MindSphere is one of a number of so-called Internet-of-Things platforms being developed by industrial companies racing to help their manufacturing customers improve productivity, where growth has been slowing in developed countries.

The technology was thrown into sharp focus in August by Emerson Electric’s failed $29 billion (roughly Rs. 1,85,767 crores) bid to buy Rockwell Automation.

The area is still in its infancy, with companies pursuing different strategies, although Siemens is generally considered to be leading the pack, helped by more than $5 billion (roughly Rs. 32,030 crores) of acquisitions in the past two years and by arch-rival General Electric’s partial retreat as it narrows focus.

Siemens said it was targeting 1.25 million connected devices and systems by the end of its fiscal year in September, up from 1 million currently, as it expands its offering – previously focused on autos and aerospace – to cover all sectors.

It is increasing research and development spending to over EUR 5.6 billion ($6.6 billion) this fiscal year from 5.2 billion last year, the lion’s share of which will go to its Digital Factory division.

Siemens says it made EUR 5.2 billion in digital revenues in the year to September. It has 23,000 in-house software developers, rivalling some of the world’s biggest pure-play software companies.

General Electric is reducing investment in its Predix industrial software platform by about $400 million (roughly Rs. 2,562 crores) this coming year to $1.2 billion (roughly Rs. 7,687 crores), and focusing solely on its own installed base of customers for the rollout.

Under new Chief Executive John Flannery, GE as a whole is narrowing its focus and shedding businesses with around $20 billion (roughly Rs. 1,28,121 crores) in revenue.

GE aims to double Predix revenues to $1 billion (roughly Rs. 6,406 crores) in 2018.

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Facebook Ramps Up Live Video to Challenge Twitter’s Periscope

Facebook Ramps Up Live Video to Challenge Twitter's Periscope

Facebook on Wednesday ramped up its challenge to Twitter-owned Periscope with upgrades to the social network’s live video broadcasting feature.

People using the Live streaming feature at Facebook will be able to “broadcast” to groups at the social network or in scheduled “events.”

Scheduled events can even be used for online question-and-answer sessions.

“We hope this new ability to both broadcast and watch live video within Groups and Events enables people to connect more deeply with their closest friends, family and the communities of people who share their interests,” Facebook product management director Fidji Simo said in a blog post.

Facebook also began letting people replay comments made during live broadcasts or weigh in with reactions such as sad, angry, love, or ‘wow,’ that were launched recently in News Feed.

“Live Reactions appear in real time and disappear quickly so broadcasters and other viewers can get a sense of how people are feeling at different points during the live video – it’s like hearing the crowd applaud and cheer,” Simo said.

live_reactions_1_press.jpgData gathered by Facebook showed that people comment 10 times more often on live videos than on regular videos.

The social network also added filters that let people personalize the look of broadcasts, and planned to add the ability to draw or doodle on videos while they are being streamed live, according to Simo.

Facebook unveiled a section dedicated to live broadcasts and made it simpler to search for video.

People accessing the social network from desktop computers will be able to use a Facebook Live Map providing “a window into what’s happening” in the world of broadcasts.

Facebook Live launched in the middle of last year and was initially limited to celebrities but recently opened to a wider audience of broadcasters.

The service allows members of the social network in 60 countries to use smartphones to live stream video. The new features were being rolled out to Facebook applications tailored for mobile devices powered by Apple or Android software.

Facebook has been working to tune into the growing trend of online video, an area where Alphabet-owned YouTube has dominated.

Celebrities and athletes have used Live to share candid moments and field questions, according to Facebook. Chefs have used Live to provide cooking tips and news agencies have used the service to broadcast breaking stories.

“We’ve been humbled by all the amazing and creative ways that people have used Facebook Live so far,” Simo said.

Simo saw immersive, 360-degree video as being part of a “natural evolution” at Facebook.

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[“source-Gadgets”]

Ola Ramps Up CNG Drive, Says Will Infuse Rs. 200 Crores in Delhi NCR Cabs

Ola Ramps Up CNG Drive, Says Will Infuse Rs. 200 Crores in Delhi NCR Cabs

Taxi aggregator Ola will invest Rs. 200 crores over the next six months as it expands the fleet of CNG cars on its platform with over 5,000 cabs in the Delhi NCR region.

The move will help Ola to cash in further on the lucrative Delhi, Gurgaon and Noida routes which comprise a significant portion of the on-demand transportation market.

The Softbank-backed firm already has more than 20,000 CNG cars on its platform in the Delhi NCR region.

“Ola is planning to expand its fleet of CNG cabs in Delhi by adding more than 5,000 cabs in the next one week. We have brought together car manufacturers, banks and financiers and valuation platforms to enable heavy discounts, loan offers and on spot valuation and exchange,” Ola COO Pranay Jivrajka told PTI.

Drivers can save up to Rs. 1.5 lakh on exchanging their old diesel vehicles for a new CNG one and over the next six months, Ola plans to invest Rs. 200 crores for CNG adoption in Delhi NCR, he said.

“This is the largest amongst a series of programs rolled out by Ola to encourage CNG adoption in Delhi NCR. By the next week, the intent is to ramp up by at least 25 percent.”

The company has partnered dealers of car manufacturers including Maruti, Tata, Hyundai, Chevrolet, Nissan, among others.

It has also on-boarded banking and financial institutions like State Bank of India, IDBI and Shri Ram Finance.

In the past few months, Ola has been aggressively expanding the number of driver partners and CNG cars in Delhi NCR, following the crackdown on diesel taxis plying in the Capital after court orders.

In November last year, Ola had raised $500 million (around Rs. 3,299 crores) in series F funding from Baillie Gifford, Tiger Global, SoftBank Group and others.

Ola has raised over $1.3 billion (roughly Rs. 8,600 crores) in external funding.

With over 3,50,000 vehicles registered on its platform, Ola offers services across 102 cities in India.

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Tags: Apps, Cabs, India, Ola, Ola Cabs, SoftBank
[“source-Gadgets”]