Welcome to 2017. The first week of the new year provided some interesting news:
Companies and Products
Analog Devices (ADI) is being honored by the IEEE with the 2017 Corporate Innovation Award “for sustained innovation and leadership in the development of high-performance data converter technology and products.”
Once the accounting is complete, Huawei expects their calendar 2016 revenue will have grown 32 percent to some $75 billion (520 billion yuan). Turning to 2017, the company will focus on profitable growth and healthy cash flow. Read an analysis by Doug Young, author of Young's China Business blog. Even more interesting is the memo by Huawei's rotating CEO, Eric Xu, who outlines six priorities and suggests the need for substantial changes by the company: "Beneath shifting sands bright gold still lies."
National Instruments published their annual Automated Test Outlook. The outlook reviews the technologies enabling automated test environments, from reconfigurable test instrumentation to software-centric test platforms. This year's edition features NI cofounder Dr. James Truchard's reflections on the past 40 years of test and measurement and the most significant market and technology trends.
Qorvo introduced a system-on-chip (SoC) for smart homes that supports the 802.15.4, ZigBee 3.0, Thread and Bluetooth Low Energy protocols.
Raytheon received a $37 million Air Force contract to develop and demonstrate anti-jam satcom technology that will enable tactical users to remain connected via the Wideband Global Satellite (WGS) network, even in hostile electromagnetic environments.
Skyworks announced new front-end solutions for M2M and IoT applications. The front-end modules support the 3GPP Release 13 Category M-1 and NB-1 protocols.
TRAK Microwave introduced a GPS time and frequency clock for defense, satellite communications and wireless applications. Tracking GPS, the frequency accuracy is under 1x10−12 and has a 1 PPS accuracy of less than 50 ns RMS.
Markets and Technology
Consumer Electronics Show — This annual extravaganza of technology announcements took over Las Vegas last week. If you weren't there to see it firsthand, Mobile World Live provides a good recap with these four videos.
5G — Joining Qualcomm, Intel announced a 5G modem based on 3GPP 5G new radio (NR) technology. The baseband and transceiver have both sub-6 GHz and millimeter wave capabilities.
During the latter half of 2017, Qualcomm, Ericsson and AT&T will conduct 5G field trials at 28 and 39 GHz, based on the expected 5G NR standard.
AT&T updated their 5G development plans for 2017, with the theme of millimeter wave field trials.
Autonomous Driving — nuTonomy began testing their self-driving Renault Zoe electric vehicles in a tame Boston location (the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park in the Seaport neighborhood).
NewSpace — OneWeb, Elon Musk and Boeing are planning LEO satellite constellations to provide global broadband internet services. Read the Los Angeles Times profile.
SpaceX completed the investigation of the September 1 Falcon 9 pre-launch explosion, identifying the likely cause as “accumulation of super chilled LOX or SOX in buckles under the overwrap.” Having implemented corrective actions, the company planned a January 8 launch of 10 Iridium NEXT satellites. However, a forecast for high winds and rain for the Vandenberg launch site has delayed the launch until this Saturday, January 14, at 9:54:34 a.m. PST.
Last Word — If you've been in sales or marketing and haven't seen most of these roles and played at least one of them, I'll be amazed. Thanks to Mike Johnson for the creativity, or at least sharing it.