Robert Bosch GmbH, the world’s largest automotive supplier, said it has created a new business unit specifically to focus on so-called Internet of Things technologies.
The company is launching a new division, Bosch Connected Devices and Solutions, that will manufacture a range of electronic products and software to connect remote devices. Among the innovations the new division will focus on are sensors and sensor-based applications for use in home and for transportation and logistics, according to a company press release.
Bosch has put its weight behind the Internet of Things, using marketing muscle and checkbook to fund IoT research and popularize IoT technologies and the potential for connected devices to revolutionize industries from transportation to agriculture.
In a press release, company CEO Volkmar Denner said in a press release that the company expects 6 billion “things” will be connected by 2015,” (though some estimates already put the number of connected devices north of the 6 billion number). “This will lead to an entirely new range of services that will provide major new business opportunities,” he said. Bosch sees a part to play as a provider of technology to enable “smart networking of devices within wider systems,” Denner said.
That includes networked sensors and actuators (which convert electrical signals into physical actions). Those e company’s internet-of-things company will have headquarters in Germany and units in Coimbatore, India and Suzhou, China. The unit will specialize in the development of networked sensors and actuators, which convert electrical signals from sensors or control units into actions, such as opening or closing a valve or switch.
Bosch will be demonstrating some of its IoT innovations at the upcoming CES Conference in Las Vegas in January. They will include what Bosch describes as a “radio-enabled network” with multiple sensors that can monitor and control a home environment.
Bosch is just the latest major firm to set up a business unit devoted to Internet of Things. Earlier this year, networking giant Cisco Systems launched an Internet of Things Group that is tasked with using the company’s footprint in enterprise and large carriers to span infrastructure connecting “home” and “office.”