Huawei's Pre MWC (Mobile World Congress) 2018 Announcements

February 9th 2018.

The Mobile World Congress in Barcelona is just around the corner and tech. suppliers are briefing the analyst community on what to expect. Given the importance of connectivity, be it in a mobile device or a simple sensor, this year’s event could be the year when many emerging and maturing technologies finally hit a point where they have satisfied the sceptics. The technology list is long and included #IoT (The Internet of Things), #5G, #AI (Artifical Intelligence), NB-IoT, Lora and Sigfox, and Machine Learning. Carriers will be looking for new business models as they plan and strategize what new data services they can create and deliver to tech. buyers. Of course any time the carriers make a move, they are matched by the OTT (Over The Top) and IT vendors – all jockeying for the mind share and wallet of the buyer.

I will be at MWC covering the event looking at what disruption and trends I will see that are emerging from the abundance of data being generated by connected devices. My coverage began earlier this week with an analysis of a Huawei pre-briefing in London. Please take a moment to see what one of the most influential tech. suppliers is announcing at MWC.

Huawei’s executive director of the board, and president of the carrier business group, Ryan Dings kicked off the session with forecasts that by 2025 there would be 40 billon devices ‘sensing the physical world’, 100 billion connections  with ‘data going online to power machine intelligence’, and180 billion terra bytes of data resulting in ‘big data and AI powering applications’. He also stressed, like many in the industry today, of the importance of using #AI, and in Huawei’s case, this means AI in the cloud, in the pipe (with intent-driven networks), and AI chips, AI voice assistants devices. All of this will be driven on one physical network (5G) giving rise to new carrier opportunities with business models based off IoT and business services off video. Finally, Huawei is not slowing down its R&D spending as it continues to invest between $10 Billion - $20 Billion over the next 5 years (Note: in 2017, they invested $12 Billion).

At the pre-briefing, one of the highlights for MWX will be Atlas. Huawei executives shared generic details about its AI platform designed to manage and orchestrate AI functions from the edge of the network to the core. Atlas is described as a heterogeneous computing solution managing CPU, GPI and FPGA chipsets with the single click. However, in our opinion, we should view Atlas as very strategic to the success of 5G management. Atlas should give carriers the ability to create 5G management services using a framework built on three tenets – Intelligence, Synergy and Ultra Broadband.

Huawei has also invested a lot in Narrow Band IoT, or NB-IoT, and they believe that the industry is near a market inflection point. They estimate that in 2018 there will be 100 networks running NB-IoT , up from 39 in 2017, 1.2 million sites up from 500,000 in 2017, and 150 million connections up from 10 million in 2017. All of these statistics are good news for telco carriers who see this broadening infrastructure support IOT. Overall IoT growth rates translate to revenue for telco carriers and Huawei forecasted that in 2018 the revenue will be $8 Billion, rising to $38 Billion in 2020, and hitting $400 Billion in 2025. The important metric for everyone is that IoT as a percent of total revenues will finally break 1% in 2019.


This is significant as it represents the knee in the revenue curve rising to 2% in 2020 and shooting up to 20% in 2025. Carriers are now seeing IoT beyond a connectivity sensor, but rather an enabler of business life cycle solutions services.

Finally, Huawei promoted its ‘3T+1M’ IoT security framework. The 3T represents 3 technologies – Defense @ The Device, Assurance @ The Pipe, and Analysis @ The Cloud. We assume that the ‘3T+1M’ will wrap itself into the OceanConnect cloud IoT Platform as part of the overall ‘Cloud plus AI’ go to market strategy.

In our opinion, it is clear that Huawei is working hard at creating, enabling and sustaining the carrier eco-system to take full advantage of the next connected world. This environment will be running off a 5G network, bring data via IoT and video, serviced at the edge of the network or in the cloud, and driving analytics and machine learning in a full vertical stack. We would like to see the broader strategic picture whereby Huawei’s carrier group integrated its capabilities with its core enterprise network and data center group and its consumer/mobile group. This vision would differentiate Huawei from most of the ICT tech. suppliers, while not under playing how challenging it would be.

Does IBM and Maersk Block Chain Joint Venture Make Sense?

The Announcement:

IBM and Maersk announced a joint venture applying Blockchain to improve global trade and digitize supply chains. This comes at a time when companies and vendors are trying to legitimize the use cases for the promising capabilities of Blockchain.


Maersk, a global leader in container logistics, recently reported that nearly 80% of its operating revenues were generated by its transport and logistics division (Note: In 2016, 57% of Maersk's $36.4 billion in operating revenue was generated by Maersk Line).


IBM and Maersk’s technology is built on Hyperledger Fabric 1.0, a blockchain first developed by IBM that is now maintained by the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger group. However, IBM and Maersk began a collaboration in June 2016 to build new blockchain- and cloud-based technologies. Since then, multiple parties have piloted the platform including DuPont, Dow Chemical, Tetra Pak, Port Houston, Rotterdam Port Community System Portbase, the Customs Administration of the Netherlands, U.S. Customs and Border Protection.


The joint venture will now enable IBM and Maersk to commercialize and scale their solutions to a broader group of global corporations, many of whom have already expressed interest in the capabilities and are exploring ways to use the new platform, including: General Motors and Procter and Gamble to streamline the complex supply chains they operate; and freight forwarder and logistic company, Agility Logistics, to provide improved customer services including customs clearance brokerage.


Our Opinion:

Blockchain has been on a marketing rampage for some time now, and finding justifiable use cases has not been easy. Here are some reasons:

Deploying Blockchain into commercial environments will require IT departments to consider how to truly support a compute intensive distributed application linked back to critical business systems. Creating a high volume transaction based system outside the confines and security of the enterprise is not easy. To that point Blockchain isn’t suited to all commercial applications that vendors and customers would hope for.


Many people have tried to link together  IoT and Blockchain as a solution to IoT’s security challenges. IoT sensors attached to assets create the data that could feed a Blockchain application. While this sounds good in theory, it is an incredibly difficult real time infrastructure challenge. The distributed ledger framework that Blockchain is built upon is very compute intensive, while the IoT ‘edge’ computing capabilities are still in an embryonic stage. With this situation, Blockchain solutions will probably have to be integrated into a cloud/network solution to present the data to enterprise-grade platforms.


With this as a backdrop, assets such as ships and containers are good use cases for using Blockchain. Firstly, the assets are typically slow moving, easy to locate, easy to record their information, and don’t necessarily need high speed, real time financial trading desk infrastructure attributes. This would enable a centrally managed, but a disturbed Blockchain environment to be built. This could deliver some of the key business functions in international supply chain management where Maersk’s core business plays such an important part  (e.g. according to a 2013 study by the World Economic Forum, reducing the friction around information-sharing and border administration when it comes to international trade “could increase GDP by nearly 5% and trade by 15%”—a boost that amounts to trillions of dollars).


Our conclusion is that IBM and Maersk have a solid Blockchain use case that has the potential to create significant economic improvements, while not overstretching the capabilities of a Blockchain technology eco-system to the point of making it vulnerable or non-supportive in a scalable production environment.

Causeway Connections Creates The Second Chance Program - Donates 10% Of Revenues To Charity

Causeway Connections believe that our expertise holds transformational potential. We believe in partnering with our clients to build a better world with technology being a material element. We also believe that technology on its own is not enough if not connected with communities that we live in and care about.

This is why we are proud to introduce the Causeway Connections Second Chance program. Causeway Connections will donate 10% of revenue from every contract to a charity of the customers choosing.  Causeway Connections is committed to helping others gain a second chance in life. This way we partner with visionary clients to build stronger communities fueled by technology and animated through human connection.

Founder, Principal and Chief Strategist, Vernon Turner has seen the power of being given a second chance in a variety of different ways in his life. Mr. Turner immigrated to the United States from Ireland in 1988. Despite a successful career in the U.K., Turner had often dreamed of working in the U.S. With the support and encouragement of several individuals, he was successfully able to restart his career. He knew this “second chance’ was gift to embrace.

In 2011, Turner had emergency six-artery bypass surgery, just barely staving off a massive heart attack. Turner firmly believes he was again given a ‘second chance’, and everyday looks at ways to honor that opportunity.

Finally, Turner was a part of a reduction in force at his most recent employer after being employed there for almost 19 years. The layoff, and believing that his work with the Internet of Things has not come to a conclusion propelled him to grab another ‘second’ chance, and encouraged him to start Causeway Connections.

Throughout Turner’s personal journey, he has always believed in finding ways to help others get their ‘second chance’.  Part of this support has come through fund raising for charities as part of his marathon runs. He has raised over $20,000 for the Boomer Esiason Foundation for Cystic Fibrosis, The Framingham High School Foundation, and Resiliency For Life (Framingham High School).

Vernon Turner Launches Causeway Connections - A Different IoT Consulting Company





Welcome to Causeway Connections, the new ICT market research firm that has its roots firmly placed in real-world Internet of Things (IoT) experience. Founded by Vernon Turner, IDC’s former IoT Research Fellow and Senior Vice President, the mission of Causeway Connections is to provide customers with strategic advice and services that goes beyond the initial influence of an IoT environment.

Technology market coverage will include adjacent technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Big Data, Machine Learning, Digital Twins, Augmented Reality, and Robotics. Advice on new software programming and services models for infrastructure, network, mobile, cloud platform and edge computing will be introduced to both legacy and green field deployments. Geographic coverage will be global and IoT business markets will include smart cities, connected transportation, manufacturing, buildings, consumer/home, healthcare, retail and energy sources. Causeway Connections has the global industry network connections to plan, manage and deliver an eco-system based IoT solution that promises to challenge the status quo.


Turner has a global reputation of being a passionate, and candid change agent, transforming and accelerating all sizes of businesses from global multi-billion dollar businesses to small, nimble and innovative startups into their next phase of growth, scale and success. A global events spokesperson for IoT, enterprise and network infrastructure, and digital disruption, Turner has also been on advisory boards such as the IoTWorld Forum and The State of Illinois Smart State. Turner is consistently ranked in the top tier of all IoT technology analysts in terms of influence (via Onalytica and other sources). While at IDC, Turner became its first research fellow (for IoT) in more than fifty years, and was also awarded the Alexander Motsenigos Memorial Award, presented to the entrepreneurial IDC U.S. employee who demonstrated the passion, persistence, and collaboration needed to launch his/her innovative vision.


What’s in a company name? Causeway Connections exposes the love for Turner’s upbringing on Northern Ireland’s coastline. The Giant’s Causeway is a rock formation that, for millions of years, has stood as a natural rampart against the ferocity of the Irish Sea and a stepping stone to Scotland. The rugged symmetry of the hexagonal columns allows visitors to walk safely from one stone to the next. Combining these two qualities of a solid pathway connected to neighboring rocks gave Turner the inspiration to start Causeway Connections as the trustworthy research firm that safely takes customers to the next step of their IoT journey.