UK internet of things startups to watch

Internet of Things (IoT) has expanded vastly over the years, scaling from what seemed to be just a futuristic field of technology to a huge space with the potential for transforming industries everywhere.

From smart homes to predictive maintenance in factories, startups are developing technologies to simplify different industries using IoT.

According to research by management consulting firm Bain, the IoT market is set to grow to around $520 billion (£397 billion) in 2021, more than double the $235 billion (£179 billion) that was spent in 2017. Here are some of the startups in the UK that are hoping to cash in on the boom.

Read next: AI startups to watch

Graphcore
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Graphcore

Graphcoreis a hardware systems startup that develops accelerators for AI and machine learning.

Founded in 2016, the Bristol-based company builds intelligence processing units (IPUs) that can improve the performance of machine intelligence training and inference workloads.

The startup develops IPU-Accelerator and IPU-Appliance products for developers to run machine learning models faster, whilst providing AI researchers with access to new types of work that are not accessible using traditional technology methods.

Graphcore also offers a graph programming framework, known as Poplar, for IPU-accelerated platforms.

The company was started by cofounders Nigel Toon and Simon Knowles and has raised $310 million (£244.29 million) in Series A to D funding, led by investors such as Amadeus Capital and Atomico.

GeoSpock
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GeoSpock

GeoSpockis an intelligent software company that assists organisations with big data engineering to unlock the value of hidden data silos.

Founded in 2013 by Darrin Disley and Steve Marsh, the GeoSpock's technology is built to help companies quickly manage extreme amounts of data in order to support organisations when reacting to key insights.

GeoSpock offers the world's first spatial big data platform, which includes data management, connectivity and exploration features.

The company works in industries including smart cities, automotive, asset management and more.

GeoSpock has raised $32.8 million (£25.85 million) in funding since launching.

FloLive
© FloLive

FloLive

FloLiveis a cloud-based IoT ecosystem that composed of a core network, global connectivity, identify management, and IoT billing, which customers can use to manage their devices. The system is designed for mobile network operators, IoT service providers and platforms, and chipset and device manufacturers.

The company was founded by Percy Gracy in 2015 and has raised $4.2 million (£3.2 million) in Series A funding from Arie Capital, Golden Sunflower Capital.

SAM Labs

SAM Labs

SAM Labsproduces IoT teaching kits designed to make STEM classes more engaging for kids. The kits are composed of Bluetooth-enabled building blocks from motors to buzzers that connect to each other via an app. Students can use them to code different behaviours, such as pressing a button to turn on a light.

The London-based startup was founded in 2014 by Joachim Horn, a mechanical engineer, and has raised a total of $11.2 million (£8.6 million), including €5.7 million (£5 million) in a Series A round led by Touchstone Innovations.

Den
© Den

Den

Denproduces smart home switches, sockets, remotes, motion sensors, thermostats and watches that allow users to choose between flicking switches on and off manually like any or wirelessly control them via a remote or smartphone app.

The startup was founded in 2014 by teenage entrepreneur Yasser Khattak, who put his studies on hold to build the company. He's gone on to raise a total of £4.4 million through seed funding, equity crowdfunding and a Series A round led by Seeders.

Playbrush
© Playbrush

Playbrush

Playbrushis a mobile app designed to encourage kids tobrush their teeth properly by transforming a toothbrush into a video game controllers. It is designed to encourage kids to brush their teeth regularly and properly.

The company was founded by UCL alumni Paul Varga, Tolulope Ogunsina, and Matthäus Ittner in 2014, who have raised a total €2.5 million (£2.2 million) for their venture. In 2018, the trio of founders appeared on BBC Two show Dragons' Den, but turned down investment offers of £100,000 as the Dragons wanted more for more their money than the one percent stake in the company on offer.

DevicePilot
© DevicePilot

DevicePilot

DevicePilot(previously known as 1248) is a consultancy launched in 2013 which focuses on IoT device management and scaling IoT projects up – all the way from small pilots to full deployment of millions of connected products.

The team behind DevicePilot have played a significant role in developing open standards such as HyperCat for interoperability between IoT hubs.

Senseye
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Senseye

Senseyespecialises in predictive maintenance for industrial IoT. Its cloud-based solution helps manufacturers avoid downtime and cut maintenance costs, something it dubs 'Uptime as a Service'. Its machine learning algorithms use sensor data from machinery to automatically diagnose potential failures up to months in advance.

The Southampton-based startup was launched in 2015 by founders Alexander Hill, Rob Russell and Simon Kampa. The team has raised almost £5 million since its launch from a number of investors, including Breed Reply.

OpenSensors

OpenSensors

OpenSensors.ioaims to provide a central, open platform for publishing and subscribing to real-time data streams generated by IoT devices.

The firm promises to make it easier for people to connect, deploy and remotely manage large deployments of sensors and internet-connected devices, plus subscribe to and reuse publicly available real-time data.

OpenTRV
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OpenTRV

OpenTRVhopes to save energy by not heating rooms you are not in. Instead of using one thermostat for the whole house, it is designed to be simple to (retro-)fit to existing UK housing stock with radiator central heating.

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