IoT Time: M2M/Internet of Things weekly digest

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4 Apr 2019

Ukrainian cellco Kyivstar has launched the Cisco Jasper Control Centre M2M/IoT cloud-based SIM management platform for its corporate clients. It also announced that its M2M subscription base now totals 1.5 million (up by around half a million since the end of 2016). Roughly 90% of M2M connections are B2B, although the operator highlights that the consumer M2M base is increasing, mainly in automotive and property (security/safety) applications.

Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) chairman Kumarasinghe Sirisena has stated that plans are underway to transform Polonnaruwa district into the country’s first Smart City involving several projects in education, health and transportation, the Business Standard reported. Furthermore, under the government’s Smart City project, 2,500 schools will be connected wirelessly, expected this year, Sirisena added.

Huawei has signed a cooperation protocol with Turkey’s technology park Informatics Valley for smart cities developments in the framework of the Turkish Technological Research Council’s Research & Development (R&D) Laboratory Support Programme. A centre will be established for developing technologies in artificial intelligence, big data, IoT, blockchain and smart mobility fields.

Kazakh mobile operator Kcell and R&D/technology firm KazTechInnovations have signed a cooperation memorandum for IoT development, aiming to develop IoT projects ‘focused on market needs’ and to form a group of IoT solutions providers focused on Kazakhstan.

Russia’s Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) has launched a new platform – based on the Nokia IMPACT IoT platform – for industry-specific IoT solutions and control of IoT devices. MTS says the platform integrates all of the operator’s IoT solutions into one management system, allowing simultaneous connection of millions of smart devices, sensors and robots. MTS – which covers around 50 Russian cities with an NB-IoT network – also announced this week its latest NB-IoT expansion to the Altay region, including the city of Barnaul and surrounds plus all settlements with more than 10,000 residents across the region (over 80 towns). Russian rival MegaFon this week announced the launch of its NB-IoT network coverage in Khabarovsk.

Vodafone Germany has disclosed plans to deploy NB-IoT technology on 2,000 of its mobile antennae by September this year using the 80MHz spectrum band.

Orange Slovakia is beginning LTE-M network testing over its LTE infrastructure before mid-2019, the company has stated. Orange Slovakia is following a multi-technology IoT rollout strategy, having launched commercial LoRaWAN-based IoT network services (based on unlicensed frequencies) in 2018.

Brazilian start-up Next Level Telecom (NLT) is launching as an MVNO dedicated to IoT services over the cellular network of Vivo, MobileTime reports. NLT aims to work with IoT solution developers and integrators alongside research institutions and universities, targeting the industrial, agriculture, smart cities, government and health sectors, whilst also planning to adopt technologies including NB-IoT and eSIMs in the future.

North Macedonian operators Makedonski Telekom and Vip have both recently launched Smart Home product ranges. The former’s range includes smart sensors, lights and security cameras, available bundled in ‘Family’ packages with two mobile lines or in a ‘Magenta’ quad-play fixed/mobile package. Vip’s Smart Home offering also includes security and safety features, with both companies’ products controllable via a smartphone application.

TIM Brasil has teamed up with Gilat Satellite Networks for satellite backhaul in unserved areas of Brazil such as highways and small towns, partly to serve the agribusiness IoT market. Initially, Gilat will supply 1,000 VSATs to complement TIM’s 4G cellular coverage. A statement said: ‘Gilat’s satellite backhaul solution will allow the 4G network expansion for connectivity of machines and operators to real-time control and monitoring of harvesters and agricultural tractors, ensuring cost-effective decisions, better crop management and greater speed, efficiency and productivity in the production flow.’

In other IoT-related satellite developments, Swiss-based Astrocast has successfully launched its second ‘IoT Nanosatellite’, offering further opportunities for customers to test Astrocast IoT communication services. The mission also focuses on a set of propulsion technologies designed for separation, collision avoidance and de-orbiting. Astrocast, in partnership with the European Space Agency, Airbus and Thuraya, will eventually launch a constellation of 64 CubeSat satellites in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to provide low latency global coverage.

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