NZ ‘spoilt for choice’ with LPWAN options, says IDC

Seven nationwide networks being deployed

According to IDC New Zealand organisations will be spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting low power wireless connectivity for their Internet of Things solutions, with seven nationwide networks in various stages of deployment.

Monica Collier, research manager for telecommunications with IDC New Zealand, said: “The telcos and the Internet of Things companies are providing a range of connectivity options that will suit different use cases and budgets."

"We've already got two nationwide networks, through KotahiNet [LoRaWAN] and Thinxtra [Sigfox]," said Collier, "Now, both Spark and Vodafone are deploying two LPWA networks each, and Chorus is trying out LPWAN in Auckland. The LPWAN market is about to get competitive, generally a good sign for customers.”

Spark detailed its LoRaWAN plans in December, following an 8 December announcement from Chorus saying it had initiated proof of concept trials of a LoRaWAN network in conjunction with Visionstream subsidiary Vianet.

Spark’s initial announcement of its LoRaWAN plans, in July 2017, came within hours of Vodafone announcing plans to add NB-IoT capability to its mobile network.

In November 2017 Spark announced plans to deploy CAT-M1 technology for IoT on its cellular network early in 2018 saying it would “cover 95 percent of the places New Zealanders live, work and play.”

It also flagged plans for NB-IoT deployment saying it was monitoring global progress of the technology and would invest when the technology and use cases became more mature.

To help organisations resolve what she described as a ‘criteria conundrum’ resulting from this plethora of options she said IDC had mapped all the use cases that LPWAN technologies were most suited to using IDC’s Internet of Things Taxonomy.

“Each type of LPWAN in New Zealand has different specifications, strengths and capabilities,” she said. “Not every deployment will suit a monthly connection charge. Pricing models may need some innovation to ensure the right value equation for customers." 

She added that it is too early to know how the telcos would price their services.

 

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Tags NetworkingInternet of Things (IoT)

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