Embedded Editor Report: Platforming Embedded Computing

By Ken Briodagh

Senior Technology Editor

Embedded Computing Design

January 11, 2024


CES is telling a pretty distinct story for the embedded computing world: it’s time to stop siloing and start thinking in terms of platforms.

I met with a baker’s dozen of amazing and interesting companies (more will come over the next few weeks, don’t worry), including Telit, who talked to me about scalable throughput and platforms for embedded connectivity, Digi, who is building solutions to extend the lifecycle of products by thinking about platforming connectivity with processing, and EMD Electronics, who is seeking to optimize manufacturing processes through vertically integrating solutions – in a solutions platform model.

Do you see a theme? I see a theme.

In an interesting case of accidental synchronicity, NXP and TI both talked to me about automotive platform thinking, and radar for environmental sensing in autonomous driving and ADAS solutions. They weren’t the same in methods, however.

NXP was focused on embedding spatial awareness in all its solutions, from smart home to automotive. With its new 8600 series it’s offering 28 mm wave radar and programmable DSP, the company told me. Part of its secret to high-fidelity radar for autonomous sensing comes from the idea that sensor resolution is dependent upon the aperture of the antenna. What NXP is building is a relay-type radar mesh that uses the overlap between two or more radar sensors to create a virtual wide aperture antenna at the intersection, increasing resolution and improving responses.

At TI, there is also a focus on radar, but also supporting lidar and camera sensing solutions. Despite the limitations of each of those sensing technologies, individually, by combining them in the data processing devices at the edge, TI says it can get good results at 200 meters of range.

One thing everyone who I talked to agreed upon, whenever we talked automotive, in addition to the growing importance of more horizontal thinking, or platforming, was that the “software defined vehicle” or SDV, is the way forward for automotive OEMs, and if they aren’t getting in the driver’s seat, they’re going to get left behind. 

Vroom Vroom.

Ken Briodagh is a writer and editor with two decades of experience under his belt. He is in love with technology and if he had his druthers, he would beta test everything from shoe phones to flying cars. In previous lives, he’s been a short order cook, telemarketer, medical supply technician, mover of the bodies at a funeral home, pirate, poet, partial alliterist, parent, partner and pretender to various thrones. Most of his exploits are either exaggerated or blatantly false.

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