KTN's online platform helps you to make the connections you need


The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has refreshed its online platform to intelligently connect you to relevant events, funding, thought pieces and specialist staff to help your business innovate and grow.

You can discover content using your area of interest, from ICT to transport; from space to health – all major UK economic sectors are covered. Once you have selected your interests, using our intelligent tagging system, we will then display rich and relevant content related to your area, often from surprising sources.

An example might be new satellite technology from the space sector that is applicable in the agri-food sector. KTN-UK.co.uk will help you form these unusual and valuable connections.

All content on the platform has been carefully curated by our team of innovation specialists – not by an automated algorithm – so you can be confident that KTN is connecting you to the most relevant cutting-edge information.


The move also marks a closer alignment with our main funder, Innovate UK , with the website branding making a clear visual link. Knowledge Transfer Network is Innovate UK's innovation network partner, and also works with other funders to provide innovation networking services and fulfil our mission to drive UK growth.

We link new ideas and opportunities with expertise, markets and finance through our network of businesses, universities, funders and investors. From agri-food to autonomous systems and from energy to design, KTN combines expertise in all sectors with the ability to cross boundaries. Connecting with KTN can lead to potential partners, horizon-expanding events and innovation insights relevant to your needs.

Visit our people pages to connect directly with expertise in your sector.

Visit the KTN refreshed online platfom here


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Hooking up hearts, cars and coffeemakers: telcos take on the IoT

Telecom operators are racing to develop machine-to-machine (M2M) or Internet of things (IoT) technology for sectors including healthcare, automotive, transportation and energy. The carriers believe that services from cars offering emergency call out after a road accident to coffee machines which warn when they need re-stocking, add up to billions of dollars in new business and the promise of big cost savings for their customers.

A heart-monitoring program put in place by Telefonica, for Barcelona's Hospital Del Mar, is just one example. On discharge from hospital, patients recovering from heart attacks are given equipment to weigh themselves, take their blood pressure and answer questions on their symptoms via a touch screen. The information is transmitted to the hospital's cardiac unit who follow up by phone if they have any concerns.

The program has had a positive effect on mortality rates, reduced hospital visits and saved 9,000 euros per cardiac patient since it began two years ago, according to doctors.

Telefonica wants to roll out the heart-monitoring program elsewhere in Spain and is also investing heavily in projects in Britain with the National Health Service. However with budgets under pressure, the costs involved are an issue.

But carriers such as Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, China Mobile, and France Telecom are all betting that M2M will be a significant source of growth as the number of connected devices - from smart thermostats to a mirror on which you can check your Facebook status - climbs to 12 billion or more by 2020. 

Many analysts agree that the M2M future looks bright: Machina Research predicts revenue of $933bn by 2020 for M2M overall and Informa Telecoms & Media believes it could net $9.3bn for telcos by the end of 2014. 

Telefonica aims to earn 500-800 million euros in annual M2M revenue by 2015.

Speaking to Reuters, Matthew Key, who heads Telefonica's digital unit, said: 

"I am very convinced that M2M will be a profit driver. But we need to sell more than just basic connectivity by adding know-how and a complete service, and build the business locally step by step."

Offering a complete service is likely to be key for telecos entering the IoT/M2M space. To succeed, they need an understanding of a range of industries and this has sent many of them of an acquisition spree.

U.S. start-up Xanboo is a case in point. It was bought by AT&T for the purpose of developing home security services. Similarly, Verizon bought Hughes Telematics for the company's expertise in tracking software for truck fleets and Telefonica has invested in addFleet, which makes a free taxi-calling app for consumers.

With the European debt crisis dragging on, European telcos are struggling. Embracing the IoT is likely to be key to seeing out economic challenges in their main markets. Many analysts believe that carriers need to focus on the deployment of new services around next generation communications and mobility and place strategic bets on emerging technology. It’s a prescription which is not entirely risk free. 




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