In Europe, the Dutch city of Amsterdam has just launched an open crowd-sourced Internet of Things data network using LoRaWAN technology, part of ‘The Things Network’ initiative to determine the best wireless protocol for IoT.
According to NetworkWorld, trending in the IoT space is Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, LTE, 802.15.4, and 5G, however, experiments conducted using LoRaWAN technology, if successful, may prove to be a contender in IoT deployments.
LoRaWAN is designed to provide Low Power Wide Area Network with features specifically needed to support low-cost, mobile, secure bi-directional communication for IoT, machine-to-machine (M2M), and smart city, and industrial applications.
According to Ger Baron, CTO of the city of Amsterdam, the network’s unique crowd sourced approach is one of its advantages.
Baron said: “I do not think this has happened before and it is interesting to see how traditional telcos will cope with this disruptive new idea of building networks.”
LoRaWAN use cases
The LoRaWAN network has been used to create a bike-movement detector on the network sending a low-energy message if the bike is being moved, suggesting that it was stolen.
Sensors use the free, low-bandwidth, low-energy LoRaWAN network, rather than using costly mobile networks.
NetworkWorld adds that the cost of LoRaWAN gateway devices, necessary for the network sits at US$1,200, with Amsterdam requiring 10 gateway devices.
The city is reported to have two gateways with the organisers of ‘The Things Network’ agreeing to host sites for multiple gateways from third parties, such as the Port of Amsterdam, accounting firm KPMG and consulting firm Deloitte.