IOT poised for growth in 2020
SqwidNet ended 2019 on a high note after seeing an increase in network coverage and uptake during the year. According to Andrew Heuvel, Chief Technology Officer at SqwidNet, the company saw several exciting concepts that use the Internet of things (IOT), proof of concepts and use cases emerge, such as sensors for tamper detection that may be installed on traffic and roadside lights, notifying authorities of possible cable theft, and events that could compromise the functioning of the lights. The market has shown that it’s shifting towards more adoption – a very positive sign for growth in 2020.
“Over the past three years, the SqwidNet network has expanded rapidly and currently covers 90% of major highways and routes, 143 952 kilometres of paved tar and 538 829 kilometres of gravel roads, reaching over 90% of the country’s population,” Heuvel says. SqwidNet also has indoor coverage in all eight metropolitan municipalities, namely the City of Tshwane, City of Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni, City of Cape Town, Ethekwini, Buffalo City, Nelson Mandela Bay and Mangaung Metropolitan Municipalities, which enables new use cases for its partners.
As the exclusive operator of the Sigfox network in South Africa, SqwidNet is part of a single global IOT network. The Sigfox network is unparalleled, covering 1 billion people across 70 countries and with infrastructure covering 5 million kilometres.
“Over the past year, SqwidNet has invested in growing its partner ecosystem and we are now approaching 100 registered partners who are actively developing devices, platforms and solutions that solve South African, African and even global challenges using IOT,” says Heuvel. “The growth in the industry is evident in our daily message numbers. We have over 1 million messages being sent across our network daily and we foresee even more growth in 2020.”
Design thinking to drive real growth
“We are already seeing growing interest in adopting IOT to solve business challenges and change lives and believe we will see even further growth this year,” Heuvel concludes. “This, coupled with an increase in design thinking, where the focus is on the customer and their problem, rather than on the technology, will see existing solutions adapted to solve problems they were not originally intended to, as well as the development of new solutions that are specific to local challenges. With the right approach, support and network, 2020 could easily become the year where we see a fundamental shift in IOT adoption.”