ARM announces Pelion IoT platform
The pervasiveness of ARM-based silicon, in everything from cars to signage to smart phones to supercomputers, makes the company a natural fit for an internet of things platform like the one it just announced.
The Pelion IoT Platform’s main selling point is its universality – the company boasts that it is able to handle “any device, any data, any cloud” – in a marketplace overflowing with vertical-specific solutions. (GE and Siemens make industrial IoT products, other companies make platforms designed specifically to work well in healthcare, fleet management, or agricultural environments, and so on.)
Pelion can sit on an edge device, in a data centre, or even in an endpoint, integrating devices into a working ecosystem, although the focus is on the edge.
Part of what makes Pelion possible is ARM’s acquisition of Treasure Data, makers of an enterprise data management product designed to centralise data from any number of different silos under one roof. ARM said that Treasure Data’s ability to synthesise a wide range of different types of data input into a coherent whole is a big part of the technology underlying Pelion. Another recent acquisition, that of connectivity-management firm Stream Technologies, enables Pelion to automatically onboard and provision IoT endpoints in a seamless way over major wireless protocols
Pelion is the result of integrating the two acquired technologies into ARM’s existing Mbed IoT Device Management Platform.
IDC vice president of network infrastructure research Rohit Mehra said that it is critical for IoT deployments to address the basics, like connectivity management, on-boarding and provisioning, and that well-organised platforms can make those elements into more than the sum of their parts.
“Adding requisite analytics and visibility attributes, not just from a network management standpoint, but from a broader end-to-end data services and management perspective can lead to a holistic IoT architecture,” he said.
ARM says Pelion could, for example, process data streams being sent over a 4G connection from a distant site while also working with Wi-Fi-transmitted data from multiple devices in a central facility. This ability to bridge the connectivity gap between licensed and unlicensed is also a potentially strong value-add, according to Mehra, and one that broadens the platform’s appeal considerably.
“[Pelion] … will likely offer opportunities across a spectrum of use cases and vertical deployments leveraging cellular and non-cellular connectivity, management and orchestration,” he said.
The IoT market is beyond crowded, as every major technology vendor rushes an IoT platform of some description out the door and a numberless host of companies not traditionally thought of for their tech spy the opportunity that IoT offers. ARM has not exactly turned the IoT world on its head, but it is among the stronger plays in the enterprise IoT marketplace currently. It is not an exaggeration to suggest that ARM could become an important player in the future, but it is also important to realise that the shape of the IoT market is still fluid and could yet take several years before it becomes better defined.
IDG News Service