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Amera visualizes wireless signals for home and cyber-security

Amera visualizes wireless sign...
The Cognitive Amera device
The Cognitive Amera device
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Inside Cognitive's Amera device
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Inside Cognitive's Amera device
The Cognitive Amera device
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The Cognitive Amera device
The R10 supercomputer chip inside the Cognitive Amera device
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The R10 supercomputer chip inside the Cognitive Amera device
Different applications are available for the Cognitive Amera platform
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Different applications are available for the Cognitive Amera platform
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Imagine being able to use the proliferation of wireless signals that exists today for something more than social media posts and entertainment. That's what Cognitive Systems is doing with its Amera device. It detects wireless signals from a variety of sources like cell towers, Wi-Fi base stations and rogue signals, and turns them into cyber security alerts, crowd insights, and wireless network monitoring.

What Cognitive has created is an entire platform that works by seeing the wireless spectrum in a given space, detecting anomalies and changes in that space, and sending that information to a set of easy-to-use apps that allow the user to act accordingly. Those apps will be available for both iOS and Android devices, with other platforms available at some point in the future.

Cognitive first began working on the technology that comprises Amera 18 months ago. The end result included the development of its own supercomputer chip called R10, a cloud-based data analysis tool called Myst, and a smaller device called Fyrefly that extends Amera's "sight" through walls and into out-of-the-way corners.

The R10 is where all of the power sits. Inside is a complex arrangement of four wireless receivers, dual multi-vector processors and five custom CPU cores. It essentially takes the place of what would have been a hardware solution costing tens of thousand of dollars.

The R10 supercomputer chip inside the Cognitive Amera device
The R10 supercomputer chip inside the Cognitive Amera device

Given that the air is now full of wireless signals due to the proliferation of smartphones and smart devices, detecting changes in those signals by sheer movement through them isn't difficult to imagine. Consequently, Cognitive is touting security as a primary benefit of the Amera platform. That includes detecting intruders in your home or office, identifying unknown devices and potential hackers trying to piggyback on to personal or business Wi-Fi networks, and even monitoring the amount of RF radiation emitted by your wireless devices.

Cognitive says there's also a larger potential, with a network of Amera devices set up to detect crowd flow in malls, airports and sports venues. It's also powerful enough to help network operators monitor the health of their overall network, and detect changes to capacity, usage and service quality.

The company said Amera is expected to be available sometime in 2016, but it will initially be sold only through security companies which will act as resellers. Selling direct to consumers may not happen until later next year. The price has not yet been set, but it is expected to be in the hundreds of dollars.

Here's an overview that explains how the Amera platform works.

Source: Cognitive Systems

Meet amera

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1 comment
Gerry Lamanski
Cognitive Systems I think you have done it--
Everyone carries devices that give off signals. Yes it is great for the home. I know you have already contemplated next gen devices, so wouldn't it be great for automobiles, trains and Planes?
Your teenager uses your car, your families financial future could be put at risk if your teenager takes on unknown riders or worse gets carjacked. We all can conjure up scenarios when it would be beneficial. It may even force your teen to turn off their cell when doing crazy things--you will still be notified. Nice. Through cellular you would be notified immediately. I am sure we as consumers could get lower insurance rates if we lobbied for them with such a great device.
Planes. It may not help with hijackers or worse but me let you know who they are later when they are using their cells for demands-or when a rogue pilot tries to sneak a hidden cell phone into their cockpit( considering that pilots already have registered their current cell phones) --but that is a little far fetched I must admit but wait--wouldn't Amera be able to pick up "signals"(from devices that would be used for bad deeds) from luggage? about to be boarded?
Also could protect schools and other buildings from intruders who did not register their cell with the building security ahead of time--ya I know we could book about how that would work without "offending" anyone.
Love the tech cant wait to see where it would go. I would say good luck but you do not need it.