IBM has picked Munich as the global headquarters for its Watson Internet of Things (IoT) business, and will be investing $200m in the German city.
The vendor claims the investment is "one of the company's largest ever in Europe" and forms part of a wider $3bn (€2.68bn) being spent on initiatives to imbue IoT solutions with Watson cognitive computing capability. A total of about 1,000 research, development, engineering, and business professionals will be based in the Bavarian capital (pictured).
The facility will play host to Big Blue's "first ever IoT Collaboratories", in which partners and customers can work with the vendor's staff to create IoT solutions for the automotive, electronics, manufacturing, healthcare, and insurance industries.
Harriet Green, global head of IBM's Watson IoT business, said: "IBM is making tremendous strides to ensure that businesses around the world are able to take advantage of this incredible period of technological transformation and develop new products and services that really change people's lives. Germany is at the forefront of the Industry 4.0 initiative and by inviting our clients and partners to join us in Munich, we are opening up our talent and technologies to help deliver on the promise of IoT and establishing a global hotbed for collaborative innovation."
In addition to the new German hub, IBM has also unveiled a number of new product and service offerings, including Watson IoT and Blockchain, a service allowing end users to "share IoT data in a secure, private blockchain". Alongside this is a new Security Solutions and Services suite which is designed to "help companies proactively identify potential risks and protect their devices from compromise".
Big Blue has also announced its Natural Language Interface programme, which aims to develop voice interfaces that can be used in IoT solutions deployed in buildings and vehicles, as well as its Cognitive IoT Cookbook, an initiative designed to give developers access to code and best-practice resources "for solving cognitive IoT challenges" using the Watson natural language application programme interfaces.
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