Intel locates its latest internet of things Ignition Lab in Ireland (video)

5 Jun 2015

Ireland has been selected as the sixth internet of things lab for Intel in Europe

Ireland has been selected as the latest location for an Intel internet of things (IoT) Innovation & Development Ignition Lab, where Intel will collaborate with local companies to develop technologies for the IoT marketplace.

The Ignition Lab will focus specifically on key areas like smart homes and buildings, smart cities, smart cars, energy and utilities and smart agriculture.

Intel’s vice president of the internet of things (IoT) group and general manager of the operations and group marketing division at Intel, Frank Jones, said the new lab intends to be able to tap into the hundreds of tech companies based in Ireland, which he described as one of the most vibrant tech landscapes in the world.

The IoT is considered one of the fastest-growing areas of the tech industry, heralding enormous potential economic and social change by harnessing connected devices more cleverly.

Industry analysts estimate there will be 50bn connected devices in the world by 2020.

To date, Intel has established five Ignition Labs in Europe and the Middle East, including in the UK, Sweden, Germany, Turkey and Israel.

The lab is the latest investment in Intel’s history in Ireland since it started here in 1989.

The company has invested more than US$12.5bn, turning a 360-acre former stud farm into one of the most technologically advanced locations in Europe.

The new lab is already working with established Irish companies like Kingspan, Glen Dimplex and Keenans on a variety of tangible IoT projects.

Also located at Intel’s Leixlip campus is the Intel Labs IoT Systems Research Lab, which focuses particularly on distributed computing, machine-to-machine communication, IoT applications and data analytics.

Decisions will power the IoT revolution

“We are only at the early stages of the IoT evolution – or revolution – with 15bn connected devices in the world today, which will grow to 50bn by 2020,” Jones said.

He added that more than 85pc of systems in the world today are disconnected from the internet.

“Decisions for humans and decisions for machines. We see that as the next phase. This is where you are going to see wild innovation – new applications we can’t think about today based on the data that will become available for all of these connected devices.”

Jones said we are only at the early stages of the IoT revolution. “We’ve been in the embedded devices for decades but IoT is the next evolution of where this is going to go.

“IoT is a growth engine for us and our partners and we’ve created an IoT business unit to just focus on it.

“It will be devices that connect to the internet that collect massive amounts of data that will feed through a gateway and ultimately connect that to a public or private cloud to move that smart information.

“The real power is the solution at the end – this data allows you to create analytics capabilities to make better decisions.”

Internet of things city image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years