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Qualcomm Technologies jumped into the software-as-a-service world on Tuesday with Qualcomm Aware, a cloud platform for developers and enterprises to harness real-time information and data insights from Qualcomm silicon in IoT devices. It is expected to be available for a subscription fee later in 2023.

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What is Qualcomm Aware?

Qualcomm Aware is an intelligence platform based around locating and collating data from Internet of Things devices. At launch, it will be primarily useful for working with businesses in supply chains and logistics.

This cloud-based IoT management platform will provide various services for managing assets that require critical, accurate and time-sensitive decision-making.

By using Qualcomm’s existing network of partners, Qualcomm Aware will provide global connectivity and location technology with sensor alerts and device management and control features for IoT. Plus, developers will be able to use application programming integration-first architecture within the ecosystem of hardware and software partners.

SEE: Hiring Kit: IoT developer (TechRepublic Premium)

Some of the forthcoming Qualcomm Aware-ready products are still in development. What is known so far is that the platform will include “blueprints” for each possible project, which are solution architectures individual to each use case. These blueprints will help enterprises roll out predesigned solutions that are tailored to their needs but also work with Qualcomm’s network of independent software vendors and system integrators.

Qualcomm is trying to help organizations smooth out their digital transformations by leveraging its existing chips and devices for a network of IoT services. Also, it’s a way for the company to open up a new revenue service using the chips it already has out in the world.

“The pandemic exposed how business supply chains are prone to disruptions, and the challenges in planning for unexpected shifts in supply and demand,” Qualcomm wrote in a press release. “The lack of visibility and tracking of goods results in delays, spoilage and lost revenues and can lead to severe environmental impact.”

Applications in supply chains and industrial settings

Possible applications for Qualcomm Aware include cold chain distribution, utility asset monitoring, cargo shipment tracking, warehousing and inventory management. IoT sensors for fall or tilt detection could be used for up-to-the-minute preventative maintenance, for example.

Qualcomm says that what makes this offering unique is its root in Qualcommm’s IoT modem chipsets. Over 350 million Qualcomm chipsets sit in devices across industry segments.

Qualcomm Aware will also be able to reach across approximately 8 billion wireless MAC addresses and hundreds of millions of cells because of the recent acquisitions of Skyhook Wireless and the assets of PoLTE Corporation.

These two acquisitions help with finding signals from small devices in crowded or signal-rich environments as well. Example use cases include when devices are located indoors or underground or when devices are offline.

API tools for developers

APis are the talk of the app world, with interoperability enabling different functions to overlay each other. Private clouds, industry-specific application platforms and existing enterprise software tools are part of Qualcomm’s plan for the Aware platform.

“We want to be interoperable with all of these industry solutions, so we can deliver a baseline framework that developers understand and that they can build new solutions on,” said Rod Forter, senior director of business development in the connected smart systems group at Qualcomm.

Enterprise resource planning partnerships and more

The first integration announced is Microsoft Dynamics 365, with more enterprise resource planning, supply chain management and inventory management partners likely to come. Other partnerships announced on Tuesday include Foxconn Industrial Internet, Maersk, Salesforce, TE Connectivity and TomTom.

TechRepublic listed networking and digital twins as top trends in IoT this year. It remains to be seen whether Qualcomm Aware will be able to successfully leverage the network of chips to essentially get at least two services out of the existing product, but it’s in line with regards to how tech companies are selling services and how other organizations are buying them.

This also comes during a time when many organizations are working on digital transformation but are overwhelmed with options or with too many tools that do not easily communicate with each other. Qualcomm seeks to solve this problem with Aware by “abstract(ing) the complexity of creating a digital twin in the cloud,” according to a press release.

In addition, Qualcomm is trying to cut down on ecosystem fragmentation and system design complexity by offering one platform that sits on top of a vast network of devices.

In more Qualcomm news, the company recently announced a 5G modem-RF system and satellite networking for two-way messaging on Android smartphones. In other IoT news, eSIM cards may change enterprise IoT.

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