Partner Spotlight: News for Schneider Electric, Oracle, Itron and more

This information provided by Smart Cities Council North America.

Scroll down for quick news takes on Smart Cities Council partners.

Major advance in Schneider Electric and Microsoft collaboration
Thanks to a partnership between Council Lead Partners Schneider Electric and Microsoft, companies now have access to multiple cloud-based applications from Schneider's EcoStruxure architecture that utilize the full capabilities of Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, as well as next-generation capabilities like mixed reality, to bring new levels of decision making capabilities, productivity and efficiency.

Panasonic opens China lithium-ion battery factory
Council Associate Partner Panasonic has opened its first automotive battery cell production plant in Dalian China as part of a partnership established with Dalian Levear Electric last year. The market for environmentally-friendly vehicles is growing and that has increased demand for all-electric, plug-in and hybrid vehicles. Panasonic has supplied lithium-ion batteries to several car makers and is developing new factories in Japan and the U.S. in addition to China.

New partnership for Itron
Roanoke Natural Gas Company, which serves customers in the greater Roanoke, Virginia area, is working with Council Lead Partner Itron to upgrade its gas distribution system to increase its operating efficiency and improve service to customers. Itron's solution will enable the gas utility to gain greater visibility into its system and reduce costs, improve reliability and ensure overall system integrity, using detailed meter data. It also will allow the company to collect meter data remotely with mobile data collection.

Oracle announces new partners for cloud service
Council Lead Partner has added new an extended partnerships to its Oracle Network Cloud Service: FastConnect. The program allows enterprise cloud connectivity through the points of presence for global members of Oracle PartnerNetwork. The collaborations are intended to help global enterprise customers more easily take advantage of cloud adoption, performance, cost and innovation benefits of the Oracle Cloud.

Daimler enters U.S. home energy storage market
Council Lead Partner Daimler is working with Vivint Solar to provide residential power storage systems in the U.S. Officials of Mercedes-Benz Energy, Daimler's battery business unit, said energy storage and solar are essential for electric vehicle owners in the drive to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Daimler's energy storage battery systems have previously only been available in Europe, but the company also views the U.S. a major market for EVs.

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Doug Peeples is a Portland, Oregon-based writer specializing in technology and energy. Follow @smartccouncil on Twitter.