IoT Time: Internet of Things digest

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24 Sep 2020

Luxembourg-based Cube Infrastructure Managers has acquired a majority stake in Heliot Europe, the owner and operator of the Sigfox 0G IoT networks in Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, and furthermore is acquiring Sigfox Germany via Heliot Europe. Cube announced its objective to accelerate the growth of the Sigfox IoT infrastructure in the region in cooperation with the existing operating management of the networks, which retains a minority stake in Heliot Europe. CEO of French-headquartered Sigfox, Ludovic Le Moan, declared: ‘From the very beginning, Sigfox has been aiming to offer customers an ever-better service, through innovation, densification, a mature ecosystem, and a high return on investment. Selling Sigfox Germany to dedicated and long-term partners such as Heliot and Cube will allow us to keep this promise.’ Sigfox has deployed its 0G networks across 72 countries and regions to date.

T-Mobile Netherlands is targeting entrepreneurs and organisations with the launch of ‘IoT Easy Connect’ solutions, including ‘future-proof’ access to its new 5G network, promising ‘accelerated digital transformation’ with reliable connectivity for systems and devices. As its name suggests, T-Mobile says that the solution is easy to order and manage. Dutch rival KPN meanwhile is cooperating on development of a new electric scooter named Brekr which utilises a SIM card and GPS module with a service app providing data such as distances travelled, location, expected conditions, plus alerts if the moped is moved or bumped as well as a geofence to limit the range the scooter can travel.

The German operator formerly known as QSC has completed its company renaming and rebranding as q.beyond with a service range fully focused on digitalisation for SME customers incorporating Cloud, SAP and IoT solutions, via nationwide locations and its own certified data centres.

In the US, Senet secured a USD16 million funding round led by Fisk Ventures to support acceleration of its LoRaWAN IoT network rollout driven by increased demand from the energy/utility sector. Senet deploys public, private and hybrid LoRaWAN connectivity supporting a variety of municipal, industrial and enterprise initiatives focused on automation, service delivery and sustainability.

Telia Denmark, broadcaster TV2 and lighting firm BB&S have demonstrated 5G-connected lamps for TV and filmmaking studios/sets, with the potential to improve cost efficiency while enabling new methods of remote production working and rendering large amounts of equipment such as cabling unnecessary. The partners’ 5G test system controls a range of lights wirelessly, with real-time performance data from each lamp used for optimisation, whilst going forward it would be possible to control lighting from remote locations including overseas.

TIM Brasil has formed a partnership with digital agriculture solutions company Agrosmart, collaborating on solutions for monitoring agricultural production based on real-time data collection from sources such as weather stations and soil sensors. TIM is aiming to ramp up its existing IoT farming solutions business which utilises technologies including 4G/NB-IoT connectivity, while Agrosmart already serves large groups in Brazil such as Nestle, Cargill and Bradesco. TIM’s sister operator in Italy, TIM Italia, has launched the ‘Agritech Innovation Hub’ project via an agreement with agricultural association Confagricoltura to provide innovative solutions and platforms designed to support Italy’s post-COVID-19 economic, technological and social recovery. The venture involves establishing an ‘Industrial Hub’ with other partners to work on agricultural tech implementations alongside an ‘Advisory Hub’ providing sector consultancy.

Russian telecoms giant Rostelecom reported that its connected video monitoring system has identified and helped to extinguish 30 forest fires in the Urals Federal District and Perm Territory so far in 2020. Each of Rostelecom’s cameras has a 360-degree field of view and 4K resolution, enabling recognition of small traces of smoke at up to 20km distance. Rostelecom also announced its latest Smart City project, in Anapa in the Krasnodar Krai region on the northern coast of the Black Sea. Smart solutions will be implemented in Anapa to increase the efficiency of municipal administration and improve the urban environment, ranging from smart video surveillance to an AI-driven management decision support system. Rostelecom implemented a similar Smart City project earlier this year in Novorossiysk, a major port city on the Black Sea.

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Austria, Brazil, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Heliot, Heliot Austria, Heliot Liechtenstein, q.beyond (formerly QSC), Rostelecom, Senet, Sigfox, Sigfox Germany, T-Mobile Netherlands, TIM Participacoes (TIM Brasil)