FastNet launches SA's first purpose-built IOT network
Enabling the vision of the Internet of Things.
FastNet, a leading M2M operator and part of the Telkom SA Group, has today announced its intention to build a network designed specifically for the 'Internet of Things' in South Africa. The Internet of Things (IOT) is considered to be the next generation of enabling ubiquitous access of everyday objects to the Internet.
According to IMS Research, by 2020 the number of Web-connected devices worldwide is expected to reach 22 billion, with more than 50% of these applications predicted to be low power devices requiring extremely long battery life that can't be served by existing technologies such as cellular M2M, WiFi, Bluetooth or Zigbee.
By selecting LoRa technology from the global semiconductor company Semtech, FastNet will target devices and services that require a very long battery lifetime at a low price point, complementing its cellular M2M services, which are optimal for high data throughput applications where there is ample power.
"We believe that Semtech's LoRa RF technology is the most appropriate choice to deploy IOT services, thanks to its long range and secure, bidirectional communication capabilities," said John Myers, CEO of FastNet. "LoRa satisfies the requirements of our customers for smart grid, industrial automation, asset tracking, metering, security and many other applications. The value proposition of the LoRa technology is convincing major industries to deploy IOT applications and services which were previously unrealisable."
"We are very pleased that FastNet has chosen LoRa technology to provide a low power, long range RF network to enable the Internet of Things in South Africa," said Marc Pegulu, Vice-President of Marketing for Semtech's wireless sensing and timing business unit. "This step allows application developers in the region wanting to attach low cost monitoring and metering devices to this network to do so without the cost and overhead of developing their own wireless infrastructure."
Semtech is working with FastNet and other regional telecoms companies and ecosystem partners to form a LoRa Alliance to promote interoperability between public networks and create an ecosystem of developers to expedite IOT connectivity.