Swisscom builds new low power IoT testbed

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Swisscom has built a low-power wide area network (LPWAN) for new trials looking into energy efficient Internet of Things infrastructure.

Tests will begin next month on the network, which is the first of its kind to be built in Switzerland. It will connect devices which will share small amounts of data with one another and which need low levels of power.

The network fits alongside the operator's existing M2M network. It has been built with additional low output gateways, installed in different locations. The sensors run on a maximum of 0.5 watts and have emissions that are less than those of a residential cordless phone, said Swisscom.

The sensors will communicate with each other by using frequencies in the unlicensed ISM800 band. Swissscom said next month's trial will be held in Zurich and Geneva.

Jaap Vossen, Head of M2M Sales and Marketing at Swisscom, said: "With LPN, we are making innumerable new M2M applications across all segments possible in one go. For example, the networking of everyday devices such as sensors, water dispensers, waste bins and letterboxes. The user is notified in real time when the post has arrived, for instance."

Swisscom has previously established an M2M Centre of Competence to help its customers with regional or global connectivity demands. Its cloud-based Application Enablement Platform can be used to manage their own M2M data.

The operator's customers use the Internet of Things for the likes of remote maintenance, mobile payments, fleet telematics and "track & trace".

Swisscom was one of the founding members of the LoRa Alliance, which launched in January and aims to develop new standards for LPWAN.

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