NXP brought its IoT World Tour truck home today, visiting its long-standing offices just outside Manchester in the north of England. Given that it's only just over the Pennines from us here in Leeds, we thought it'd be rude if we didn't drop in to play with all those awesome hyper-connected toys advanced electronics equipment.


The Internet of Trucks

20160321_120650.jpgelement14 actually sponsored the European leg of the NXP IoT Truck's global tour, which has seen it visit major cities all across the continent, into Asia and around the US. But until today, we'd never actually seen inside.


It's a pretty simple set up, in many respects, but the gear you'll find inside is a real candy store for element14 Community types!


It's all laid out in different sections, such as Automotive, Home Automation, Industrial Automation, Digital Networking, and some central pillars that show how NXP's semiconductors have made their way into a wide array of startup tech companies in recent months and years. Here there are drones, SBCs, sensors aplenty and even the highly anticipated BBC micro:bit. They've all been brought to life in one way or another using NXP's range of silicon.


I don't know which wall of the high-tech truck was most appealing. Even the more traditionally sedate topics, like industrial electronics, offered more than its share of intrigue. There are some superb insights into smart cities, smart power and smart commerce, which are delivered right next door to home automation, giving a great sense of flow that tells a story of working, available Internet of Things that begins on a massive scale and takes you through to miniaturised applications within your own home.


The automotive section, among many other things, has a great section regarding security, and how NXP has been working to embed powerful hardware encryption into any data that comes into, or leaves, a connected car. With autodriving vehicles quickly speeding over the horizon, this is becoming a particularly hot topic and it's good to see it isn't being overlooked by the tech industry. NXP even told us about its "Blue Box" technology that's currently providing the brains of self-driving test cars and turns data from cameras, radar, and even lidar sensors.


20160321_110606.jpgHome automation has been struggling, like many branches of the IoT, with a lack of standardisation, but the NXP Truck boasts an intriguing gateway module that's able to accept all current standards (with a preference for Thread, it seems) and seamlessly hook all the connected devices and sensors around the house together. Running on embedded Linux, this also looks like an inspiring step in the right direction.


The NXP IoT Truck is a serious fun house for all you (well, us) tech heads who spend so much time here on the element14 Community, so don't miss a chance to get on board if it's in, or near, your area. You'll have a lot to talk about with the NXP team, and a lot to get your hands on (that you'll want to bring away with you, but can't. Well, not easily, anyway...).


In the meantime, here's a virtual tour, courtesy of element14!