BlackBerry to Create New Business Unit
BlackBerry has created a new business unit that will integrate its QNX embedded software, Certicom cryptography applications and its patent portfolio, highlighting some of its most innovative technology.
The unit will be called BlackBerry Technology Solutions and will be headed by Sandeep Chennakeshu, former president of Ericsson Mobile Platforms and chief technology officer of Sony-Ericsson.
John Chen, BlackBerry’s executive chairman and CFO, commented on the unit by saying, “Combining all these assets into a single business unit led by Sandeep will create operational synergies and new revenue streams, furthering our turnaround strategy.”
Since joining the company in 2013, Chen has made some dramatic changes. BlackBerry has narrowed its focus, eliminating many of its consumer-oriented businesses, selling off real estate and laying off employees. Chen told employees that the company had completed its downsizing phase and was poised to make acquisitions and do some modest hiring in certain sectors of the business including product development and sales.
Chennakeshu has 73 patents to his name and 25 years of experience in research, intellectual property licensing and product development in the electronics, wireless and semiconductor industries. His new business unit includes former independent Ottawan business QNX, a software maker for the automotive industry; and Certicom, a formerly independent Torontonian company that creates advanced security software.
BlackBerry Technology Solutions will also include BlackBerry’s Project Ion, an application platform utilizing machine-to-machine Internet technology, Paratek antenna tuning technology and about 44,000 patents.
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.