Embedded World 2024 - Recap and a glimpse into the future

Dr. Sven Hädrich

Dr. Sven Hädrich – Teamlead Embedded Software

For me, the Embedded World Exhibition & Conference, held in Nürnberg, is an annual highlight. This year’s event was no exception, showcasing all aspects of developing embedded devices. I took the chance to learn about the latest innovation for a connected future.

Zephyr - The Wind Beneath IoT’s Wings

At grandcentrix we have a long history in using the Zephyr operating system for our projects. It is a real-time operating system, optimized for connecting resource-constrained devices. Of course, I visited the booth of the Zephyr project. And I was delighted to see more silicon manufacturers jumping on the Zephyr wagon; such as NXP or STM to mention just the latest addition to the growing number of manufacturers supporting Zephyr.

Bluetooth - Evolving Beyond Connections

Bluetooth technology, a staple in wireless communications, was showcased with new enhancements tailored for IoT applications. The focus this year was on how Bluetooth can serve as a backbone for IoT, with improvements in energy efficiency, range, and data transmission rates. Demonstrations included smart home devices, healthcare monitors, and industrial sensors, all benefiting from Bluetooth’s latest capabilities. I was amazed that there is already hardware in the pipeline that supports Bluetooth channel sounding, an alternative to UWB for precise localization.

Matter - The Fabric of Connected Ecosystems

Matter, the connectivity standard promising to bring interoperability to smart home devices, starts to gain speed. Its presence underscored the industry’s move towards a unified, secure, and reliable smart home ecosystem. Exhibitors displayed how Matter simplifies the development of compatible devices, ensuring that consumers can effortlessly connect and control their smart environments, regardless of the manufacturer. I observed that Matter requires more memory resources. So, controller manufacturer add more flash-ROM to their latest designs.

UWB - A New Dimension in Precision

Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technology was another highlight, captivating attendees with its precision in spatial context and data communication. UWB’s applications in secure access control, indoor navigation, and asset tracking showcased a future where technology understands our physical world with remarkable accuracy. The demonstrations highlighted UWB’s potential to revolutionize interactions between devices and their environment, offering a glimpse into a world of seamless connectivity.

Edge AI - At the Forefront of Innovation

As expected, artificial intelligence is as hot a topic for embedded devices as it is for the rest of the information technology community. Having the power of an artificial intelligence at hand to locally reduce data, or to provide help to tweak a complex control system opens the door for a new universe of embedded applications. Grandcentrix’s latest gateway design is based on the TI AM62x platform, which provides the necessary computing power to bring artificial intelligence to the edge.

A Unified Vision for a Connected Future

Embedded World 2024 was more than just an exhibition, it was a convergence of visionaries, innovators, and technologies shaping the future of embedded system. The event highlighted the importance of collaboration across different technologies and platforms to create a more connected and efficient world. As we move forward, it’s clear that Zephyr, Bluetooth, Matter, UWB, and the innovations from companies like Nordic Semiconductor are instrumental in driving this evolution. On my train ride back to Cologne I felt the inspiration to make use of this truly fascinating new technologies.