Weekly Bluetooth Industry Report [June 5, 2020]

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Bluetooth Authentication Bug Allows Impersonation Attacks on All Popular Devices
A Bluetooth bug affecting major devices allows attackers to spoof paired devices and steal sensitive data. The Bluetooth authentication bug allows hackers to connect a rogue device by impersonating a trusted device. The Bluetooth Impersonation Attacks (BIAS) affect all types of devices that support Bluetooth Classic, including the Internet of Things (IoT) devices, smartphones, and laptops.

Apple-Google Contact Tracing App Gets First Trial in Switzerland
Switzerland this week launched a pilot program for SwissCovid, a contact tracing app based on Apple and Google’s jointly developed APIs.
The APIs will work with iOS 13.5 and devices running Android 6.0 or higher.
The pilot involves several thousand workers at Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, ETH Zurich, the Swiss Army, and staff at some hospitals and cantonal administrations.

Italy launches COVID-19 Exposure Notification app to the public
Italy on Monday launched its COVID-19 contact tracing app based on the Apple-Google Exposure Notification API, becoming one of the first to be available to the public. The app, called Immuni, is based on the coronavirus-tracking developer framework announced by Apple and Google in April 10 and released on March 20. The Apple-Google API contains a variety of privacy protections, including decentralized storage of user data and use of Bluetooth instead of Location Services.

What You Should Know About COVIDSafe’s Issues And Bluetooth-Related Risks
The Australian government’s COVIDSafe app has been up and running for almost a fortnight, with more than five million downloads. Unfortunately, since its release many users – particularly those with iPhones – have been in the dark about how well the app works. Digital Transformation Agency head Randall Brugeaud has now admitted the app’s effectiveness on iPhones “deteriorates and the quality of the connection is not as good” when the phone is locked, and the app is running in the background.

Google’s Sodar to help maintain social distancing – is it needed though?
As lockdowns are being replaced by unlock across India, the importance of social distancing as a means to curb contact spread of Covid-19 assumes greater importance. Google has now stepped in with an augmented reality based app that could help maintain safe distance. The SODAR is currently available on Android phones. Users can simply open the Chrome browser and go to the webpage to get started. At present users do not need to download anything though it doesn’t work on iOS or even on older Android devices. 

France releases contact-tracing app StopCovid
After weeks of intense debate, the French government has released its contact-tracing app StopCovid. While it was supposed to be released on both iOS and Android six hours ago, it is only available on the Play Store right now. It’s unclear what is causing the bottleneck on iOS, as the government sent me a beta version of the iOS app last week ahead of the final release today. I’ve reached out to the French government but haven’t heard back.

Contactless Order & Pay for Dine-in, Take-out and Drive-thrus is Launched by Konnect Solutions
Konnect Solutions introduces a new mobile Contactless Order & Pay system for restaurants to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection from customers communicating directly with restaurant staff, coming in contact with payment devices or ordering from touch screen kiosks. Konnect’s mobile solution leverages the company’s patent pending wireless technology that turns customers’ smartphones into instant order and pay devices for use inside restaurants and in drive-thrus without the need for downloading an app, connecting to the Internet or using a web browser.

Phunware Adds HID Mobile Access Integration for MaaS Platform Deployments
Phunware, Inc., a fully-integrated enterprise cloud platform for mobile that provides products, solutions, data and services for brands worldwide, announced today its Multiscreen-as-a-Service (MaaS) platform now offers a seamless integration with HID Mobile Access, a credentialing technology developed by HID Global.

How IoT can and can’t help us go back to work
I’ve been meaning to write about connected tech in office buildings that could track fevers, ensure people maintain social distancing, and even help with contact tracing for a while now. But every time I get off the phone with an executive who has turned COVID-19 into a sales pitch, I feel frustrated. While connected tech in buildings will help us as we go back to work, it’s not the panacea that companies — and the media — are making it out to be.

Versatile Bluetooth LE smart lock offers Apple HomeKit and Xiaomi Mijia compatibility for broad smart home ecosystem support
Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Shenzhen, China-based Lumi United Technology, a member of smartphone and electronics giant Xiaomi’s ecosystem of companies, has selected Nordic’s nRF52840 Bluetooth® 5.2/Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) advanced multiprotocol System-on-Chip (SoC) to provide the wireless connectivity for its ‘Aqara Door Lock N200’. 

Xicato’s Portfolio of Premium Smart Linear LED Lights Now Shipping Worldwide
Xicato, the leading provider of Bluetooth smart building wireless controls and highest quality spot and linear light sources, today announced the general availability of previously announced XFL line of premium linear lights along with 3rd party AC drivers to fulfill orders. The XFL portfolio features 2nd generation linear lighting technology which includes a wide array of accessories to support a variety of job requirements.

Bluetooth Security Meltdown… And What to Do About It
In May, researchers from the Swiss Institute of Technology announced a Bluetooth vulnerability that appears to cause a complete meltdown in Bluetooth security. It allows a Bluetooth Impersonation Attack (BIAS) using any one device that has been previously paired with the target device using Bluetooth’s Secure Simple Pairing. Details of their research and testing are contained in their paper: BIAS: Bluetooth Impersonation AttackS

An Apple IoT network adapter is in the works, but it’s not for everyone
An Apple adapter with the model number A2282 was recently spotted in the FCC certification platform. The documents of the A2282 on FCC had revealed that this network adapter from the US-based tech giant has Wi-Fi and that it operates below 1 GHz frequency. The sub-1GHz frequency suggests that the new A2282 could be some sort of IoT device.

Military Taking Biometrics to a New Level
The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks accelerated the growth of U.S. military applications using biometric technologies to identify the enemy and to improve security and surveillance. The adoption of biometrics in recent months has been driven by advances in a variety of technologies, including wireless, artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning.

Meet the IoT startup helping the likes of OYO, MyGate, and L&T build a contactless future
In the last few months, since the coronavirus outbreak, terms like ‘contactless’ and ‘touchless’ have entered our everyday lexicon. Experts opine that the world is staring at a “contactless future”. It could, of course, take us several years to go fully touchless, but we’re already headed that way. Several companies and product architects are out building solutions to help the world transition into this future.

Bluetooth Low Energy Mesh: Features and Applications
Wireless mesh networks offer range, resiliency and expand the coverage area. Bluetooth mesh, launched in 2017, is the latest standards-based mesh networking technology and builds on the success and ubiquity of Bluetooth. Join us for a live webinar to learn about the key features of BLE mesh, how it compares to other technologies, mesh applications, and how you can start implementing BLE mesh networks.

Linux Powered Industrial IoT Gateway Offers WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, 4G LTE Connectivity
Compulab IOT-GATE-IMX8 is a Debian Linux powered fanless Industrial IoT gateway powered by NXP i.MX 8M Mini processor and specially designed for industrial control and monitoring with optional support for WiFI 6 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.1, 4G LTE, and GNSS connectivity. The gateway is equipped with up to 4GB RAM and 128GB eMMC flash, takes variable DC input from 8V to 36V, and operates in a wide temperature range of -40C to 80°C with the company providing a 5-year warranty and 15-year availability.

Alabama’s contact tracing app won’t collect location data
The Alabama Department of Public Health has admitted it doesn’t have enough workers to efficiently trace all of the people who have come in contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19. So, the state is turning to tech giants Google and Apple for help with a contact tracing app. But how does it work, and what does this mean for the privacy of Alabamians?

Wolfpack look to offer fans tracking bracelets to help COVID-19 contact tracing
 The Toronto Wolfpack are looking at providing fans with disposable tracking bracelets/wristbands during games to allow for contact-tracing in case of COVID-19 once the team returns to play. The transatlantic rugby league team has struck a deal with TraceSafe Technologies to use its wearable tracking products and services “to help in safely re-opening Lamport Stadium for training, any games played behind closed doors, and games with fans during this time of social distancing.”

Zebra Technologies Introduces Proximity Sensing, Alerting & Contact Tracing Software for the Enterprise
Zebra Technologies Corporation, an innovator at the edge of the enterprise with solutions and partners that enable businesses to gain a performance edge, today launched Zebra MotionWorks® Proximity. The solution offers proximity sensing with user-level alerting and contact tracing to enable employers to help protect their employees’ health while in the work environment.

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