Senet Unveils LPWAN Agent for Remote IoT

Io Tcity4

By: Michael Vizard

One of the thornier issues when it comes to Internet-of-Things (IoT) deployments is things often need to be connected in out of the way places. In those circumstances, network bandwidth is often limited.

Senet, a provider of a cloud-based platform for delivering network services to IoT environments, today moved to address that issue by developing agent software that enterprise IT organizations or service providers can use to to connect a gateway to a Senet low-power wide area network (LPWAN) designed for IoT environments. LPWANs use unlicensed spectrum to connect to devices with low power consumption, long range, and often small amounts of bandwidth.

Senet CEO Bruce Chatterley describes the Senet Low Power Wide Area Virtual Network (LVN) as software that can be deployed anywhere to connect to the Senet’s Managed Network Services. That service is currently available directly in 225 cities. The agent software provides a means for IoT deployments outside of those areas to send encrypted data over a private wireless Senet network, says Chatterley.

“It creates a hybrid network,” says Chatterley.

Key attributes of LVN include support for roaming between instances of LVN and access to a global device activation and deployment that Chatterley claims can be consistently applied hundreds of thousands of gateways and endpoints in a few minutes. In that sense, the LVN is a kind of software-defined network for LPWANs.

To help drive adoption of LVN, Chatterley says Senet has also created a revenue sharing plan under which it will reward partners such as billboard operators to deploy the technology.

LPWANs are emerging as a low-cost competitor to cellular technologies for connecting IoT, which are more expensive. One cellular-based IoT standard, NB-IoT (Narrowband IoT), has been viewed as a competitor to LPWANs but has taken more time to develop. (The dynamics of IoT communications networks are profiled in our premium Ultimate IIoT report -- see more details below.)

Interest in communications networks relating to IoT continues to grow. Cloud services and proprietary services such as Senet's are being introduced to provide an alternative to traditional carriers. The only limiting factor now may simply be the degree to which organizations realize there are credible alternatives to those carriers.

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