LoRaWAN Excellence: Extended Film by The Things Industries
In a world more interconnected than ever before, where data is the lifeblood of innovation, there exists a technology that's quietly been shaping our digital future. LoRaWAN, or Long-Range, Wide-Area network, is a transformative force in the Internet of Things market. In an era where everything seems smart, LoRaWAN takes the stage as a cornerstone technology underpinning the Internet of Things revolution. In this documentary, we invite you to join us on a journey through the present. Not the distant future or the bygone past. LoRaWAN is not just a technology, it's a promise fulfilled.
This film focuses on several exciting use cases by companies that employed the true potential of the LoRaWAN technology, transforming businesses and paving a way for a more sustainable, efficient and secure future. EchoStar Mobile, who have merged satellite technology with LoRaWAN to extend connectivity beyond boundaries. Kerlink with their commitment to building the foundations of LoRaWAN infrastructure. Deutsche Bahn, driving smart transportation solutions that enhance the travel experience. Thermokon and MClimate, pushing the envelope in building automation through LoRaWAN.
Connexin shaping the smart cities of tomorrow, and API-k bringing IoT integration to new heights, making complex solutions more accessible. I'm Dean Marsh, IoT solutions architect at Connexin in the United Kingdom. I'm Lyubomir Yanchev and I'm CEO of MClimate. I founded the company almost nine years ago. I'm Marcello Cocozza, I'm Senior Product Manager of EchoStar Mobile.
My name is Mario Schroeder. I work for the company Thermokon. Thermokon is an expert in sensor technologies for more than 35 years. My name is Martin Kemper, working for DB Systel. DB Systel is the internal IT provider, digital partner of the Deutsche Bahn. Our team is providing LoRaWAN connectivity solutions for the needs of the Deutsche Bahn.
I'm Yann Bauduin, I'm the Sales Director of Kerlink. Kerlink is a company which was founded in 2005. We focus on gateway design and we manufacture LoRaWAN gateways. I'm Nicolas Sornin.
I used to be one of the co-inventors of the LoRa technology more than 10 years ago now. I had an active role during nearly 10 years in this ecosystem. I left Semtech three years ago now to create a company called API-k that I'm representing today. I've been in the IoT scene for over 20 years now. I've used many different IoT technologies. LoRaWAN really enables data capture from anywhere without using cables.
It really opens up the avenue to capture whatever you want from anywhere. So for me, when I first discovered LoRaWAN about five-six years ago, it opened up all these new possibilities and we had been able to turn ideas into reality very quickly. We see a lot of competition in the IoT landscape and I see LoRaWAN as a key technology. When you have a look at the cross rates over the last years and you see also the connected devices on The Things Stack. It's 1.5 million.
The trend for LoRaWAN technology is great. I guess this is a key technology in the IoT market for the next years. Essentially a lot of the connectivity complexity. Although LoRaWAN is quite complex and flexible, to the customer a lot of those issues were just solved by LoRaWAN. Another super important thing is that we unlocked the use case to use batteries because previously on WiFi we had only the option of constant power supply.
This in turn unlocked a lot of use cases for us in terms of products, offerings. We think that this is one of the key technologies that we point out, and we think that with this technology, we can help the ecosystem to have the massive IoT deployment with satellite and with terrestrial, as happened today. The highlight of our product is that we have 35 years of experience in sensors. We know what we are doing, all the sources of deviation a sensor can have we can counteract that.
We trust in our sensors. We provide five years warranty for all our sensors. With our knowledge in building automation market, we can help IoT companies to set up a building, a hotel, a room in the best condition so that they are best equipped. API-k is actually in the business of doing safety tracker for outdoor professionals or outdoor sports enthusiasts. We do ruggedized trackers that can be recovered in any situation, any environment when people need assistance. That's an example of what we do, of the tracker we're doing.
This is simply basically a badge you wear on you and you just forget about it until you actually need it. This is a big SOS button and once you press that SOS button, cavalry will come and get you out of trouble. Our solutions are divided in four categories. One is energy efficiency.
This is primarily done by controlling the HVAC systems. It might be radiators, it might be fan coil units, it might be gas boilers, it might be split air conditioners. We have solutions for all of those. Then the second solution is air quality, which became super relevant, especially around COVID.
There we have three sensors. One of it with its own batteries. Just a white box with a button and a light alarming you whether the CO2 is in good level. The other two sensors are quite new. They're both with e-ink displays and solar power. This is something else that LoRaWAN brought to the table, just the low consumption.
Now with the solar innovation, solar panels that are tuned to work well with indoor lights, all of a sudden you don't need batteries at all. So we have two sensors. One is with a PIR and the other one is without a PIR. The one with PIR, since it was the first one, we actually added space for batteries. But now that we're so confident in the solar power generation, the second version does not have any option for batteries because we know it works just with the indoor lights. The third solution that we have, it's about water.
It's about controlling water. Whether it is in case of a flood, so you need to turn off the water supply, or in case of prepaid billing, which is very relevant in some countries. People essentially purchase a ticket for let's say 20 euro of water, and when it finishes we have a valve which can stop the water. The other solution in the water category, it's a flood sensor. So it's a flood sensor that is placed on the floor and if it senses flood, it immediately alarms. Also the valve, it can immediately stop the water.
But in most cases it's easier for people to just place the flood sensors around the building and decrease the cost of a flooding. What's interesting about this solution is that it's mostly purchased by companies and clients that already had issues with flooding, because they know how expensive it can be to recover the building. The fourth solution that we have, it's about automation. We have a door and a window sensor and we also have a multi-purpose button. The multi-purpose button can be used for anything.
It just sends an uplink when it's pressed. You can put the sticker with let's say a waiter or a bill. You can put a sticker with some warning. It has a lot of use cases.
As we journey deeper into the heart of LoRaWAN, we uncover one of the most remarkable attributes: scalability. LoRaWAN technology can handle a massive number of devices or transmitting data without congestion. This is key to its success. In densely populated urban areas, LoRaWAN allows for smart infrastructure on a massive scale: street lights, waste management, traffic systems, all managed seamlessly. In rural settings, it's the backbone of precision agriculture, connecting sensors across vast expanses, optimising yields without compromise. And in healthcare, it's the lifeline for wearable devices and patient monitoring systems providing quality care for all.
The beauty of LoRaWAN lies in its ability to grow with our needs. It's the bedrock of future innovation, ready to scale to meet any challenge. So how do you achieve scalability? I think scalability in IoT frameworks is very important, and when you talk about scalability in IT, you will have to talk about cloud. And Deutsche Bahn is pushing a cloud-first approach since a couple of years. That's very important for us to scale with IT to provide services of today and tomorrow. I think LoRaWAN really fits best to that, especially The Things Stack.
We have deployed The Things Stack in our own cloud infrastructure, so it's highly available and really highly scalable, and that's important for us for future services. As a gateway manufacturer, the point is that we promote the idea that the scalability comes from the possibility to have a good maintainability of the network. We believe that if maintainability fails, you cannot scale your project. That means that if you just deploy one, two, three gateways, it's okay, it's easy to maintain.
But if you come to larger deployments, then you need to have a professional way to administer, monitor, update your network. From my point of view, the scalability comes from there, especially that for the number of devices, you need to have more and more gateways and to densify your network to access these devices. If you add devices, you add gateways, and so you need more maintainability and maintenance services on that. The choice of LoRaWAN was obvious for that tracker. Because of the constraint of the device, it needs to last a week on a fairly small battery while transmitting frequently.
And more important, we have to operate in totally white areas, meaning with no cellular connectivity, no kind of connectivity. In many cases, we have had to deploy our own connectivity in the ski resort or around the mountains where we want to operate. For us, we're not Orange or KPN, we cannot go and deploy cellular or ask them to deploy cellular because there's no customer, they will never do it. However, using LoRaWAN, we were able very cheap and quite easily to put the gateways we needed and operate them ourselves to provide coverage in the areas of interest for us. Basically, LoRaWAN gave us the power to build the network where we needed, when we needed for our devices and our application.
We are a product company. What we do best is create, perfect and manufacture products and we don't want to go to the end consumers. I think this is another thing that LoRaWAN enforces. It's the collaboration between companies. Our model is that we work with partners. We never go to install sensors or commission a site.
Sometimes we go on the first commissioning of a partner so that we can have engineers there and just have an extra assurance. But essentially we have a network of partners that either purchase from us or through distributors in some countries. Those partners are anywhere from a simple system integrator, but maybe a facility manager, energy efficiency company, maybe a telecom, maybe a utility. We have all those. Our trackers can now run nearly anywhere in Europe using wherever there is The Things Network coverage, and that's quite a big change. We started at the very beginning on the machine-to-machine systems in transportation with Linux-based gateways.
Now in 2023, and this is maybe six to seven years from then, we have completely migrated our portfolio to LoRaWAN. So yeah, today it is 100% LoRaWAN. We have been seen as a leader in the gateways providing solutions to the main telcos, main carriers in Europe and many countries. We especially deployed the networks for Proximus, KPN, Orange, and also Tata Communications in India, for example. These are major deployments by big telcos. Today, the picture has smoothly changed and we are now deploying private networks for companies who address this vertical.
We are very proud of many partnerships on this market that is now a little bit more fragmented than previously, but largely successful. Currently, we have a lot of interesting use cases. These are covered not only by human behaviour, because we can have, for example, the BUS monitoring, because for the car we have everything under tracing, because using the terrestrial technology. But if we go in maritime, of course, there is no coverage, and we can enable this syncing to trace your boats, to trace the voltage. If you have any issue, you can get this information in real time and can be safe. Or can be also application like for environmental monitoring, like detection of wildfire.
We can save this risk and issue in real time, getting the information from the tree in remote area without an issue. I have many different examples of successful projects. It's hard to pinpoint one.
I'd say one that was particularly interesting was in Edinburgh. Basically, all the schools there use our CO2 sensors, which is quite nice. Another one is basically from the product development site. It's more about the new products that we developed with solar, which I think is super important because we cannot live on batteries forever. This really made the difference this year, but also I believe it's going to have a long-term impact on both us and the industry. Keeping the infrastructure up and in operating condition is a real challenge.
We have a lot of gateways that are in very harsh environment that experience power outages, connectivity outages. Keeping a network of gateways up and running is a challenge. Damian, a guy in the team, is basically working on that. That's his job to keep the thing running and to go and repair and fix gateways that are not working. There is always challenge, otherwise there is no business.
The first challenge that we have, at least in the IoT ecosystem, is the missing awareness that something new is feasible. Now we are fighting about this, but since our vision is to have the massive IoT deployment, we are trying to be convergent. In order to enable this, we, first of all, tried the integration with the terrestrial player. For one of the announcement was the integration with the The Things Industries platform.
This was one of the first steps for our vision. We think that in this way, we try to help people to understand that some innovation is real and not just marketing advertisement. Of course, to do this, now we are working in order to involve a wide ecosystem in terms of device makers, in terms of IoT platforms, in order to move from the words to the real case. Now also on the Wall of Fame, there are four or five real concrete devices that can cover this use case.
Implementation, we have a dedicated team of network planners. With water utility companies, they have all the locations where the meters are intended. They capture all that data, input it into their simulation tool, run that.
That can take up to two weeks to do the simulation, so we know exactly where the gateways need to be placed for optimal efficiency to keep within the spread factors required for the SLAs. Working, for example, with e-ink, displays has been something new for us. Working with energy harvesting has been something new for us and quite challenging.
For example, one of the products where you have the option for batteries, you also have the option for external power supply. So we had to combine three input power sources into pretty sophisticated way of harvesting energy. The other things are just typical for a hardware manufacturer.
Sometimes the factory does something wrong. They put another capacitor, let's say, or another resistor. So getting things off ground, getting to this first manufacturing batch where everything is flawless, it's hard and sometimes takes time. The last super funny thing is that our supplier of PCBs made a mistake and put on another buzzer inside, which was two millimeters higher than the one. We told them, they sent us the real buzzers, the ones that were supposed to be. We received them, we sent them to our factory in Bulgaria and our factory in Bulgaria received hair clips.
So the logistics partner basically mistook the package. Something unforeseen that got us delayed by at least three weeks. But at some point with the R&D you stop having real problems.
You transfer to a place where you have more operational issues. Because at the end of the day, a hardware product consists of more than 50 individual parts, more than. And something can go wrong with any of those parts. So you got to have the quality assurance systems in place that you make sure that what the customer receives at the end of the day is what you have designed in the first place.
The main challenges we met are about the market itself. In the early steps, we started with major operators and the business model was based on the typical telecom operator model, selling connectivity. After some years, what we could see is that finally the success comes to players who have a real business case behind and who have designed their solution, taking into consideration the business model, the business plan they had at the early beginning. The idea behind is that a customer or a user who wants to deploy a network should first consider the full TCO of his network, calculate the budgets, calculate everything about the solution he needs, rather than moving forward, straightforward to the coverage.
I think that the operators, private operators, I mean, should take the time to calculate the business plan before starting to cover with LoRaWAN. This is a challenge because not doing that leads to the failure at the end. Because if you deploy a network with no use case, the impact on the ecosystem is quite bad.
That means that going that way, calculating the budgets, taking into consideration the robustness of the network is very, very important. If users, operators do some compromise when starting the deployments, lowering the level of gateways, lowering the level of the devices, the quality of the LoRa network server, finally, it leads to the failure. It's much better, if possible, of course, in the business model, it's much better to invest on the solution, on the robustness of the solution, and then, of course, the cost, the OPEX cost will decrease and it's much better for the completion of the project over years.
Often when you look at scalability, you look on the technology, but you also have to look on your processes. That my processes scale for the Internet of Things. I think we have a very good example. One customer who deploys about more than 100 locations with LoRaWAN, from a technical point, that's very easy. You choose your right devices, you have your LoRaWAN coverage at that location, you have a scalable backend, you have your integration into a data lake.
But how to do the deployment with a distributed field organization? You will even not have the know-how in the field organization. What we did, we decided together with our customer to build some so-called onboarding app. The technician on site is not skilled with LoRaWAN. He has his mobile app.
He scans a QR code of a device and he scans a QR code of his assets, and this onboarding app is doing the rest. He will check that this device fits to the asset in this use case. Then he will onboard the device on the network stack. He will check if there's a successful join. Then he will configure the device for that use case. At the end, all this onboarding information is sent to the data lake.
This enables the customer also to roll out larger footprints in a lot of locations in Germany. So looking at the rollout processes and how to automate that is quite important. The customer's application fully integrates into Temetra. It's a seamless process. So when they add devices, water meters, it automatically publishes into The Things Stack. So that's an important piece there.
And the customers, they don't actually see that part in the background. It's all completely transparent and automated. Currently, the vision from people is that satellite is complex, satellite is expensive, satellite is difficult to collect the data. In order to destroy this vision, we are doing for final customer to be transparent. So you can receive the data from terrestrial device and sensor.
You can receive the same data from a satellite device, and then this data can be merged and flow in your existing platform. That can be The Things Stack or other. This is without any closure environment. The problem is that in the past 20 years, this environment was not standard with closed protocol, closed platform.
This, of course, limited the use case and the massive deployment. We did work together with The Things Industries since five years now, and we experienced really a lot of help from The Things Industries on our way to make LoRaWAN as a success story at Deutsche Bahn. We were able to start small without a big front end investment. It was open-source, it was available to use. And then I think the open API approach, open-source approach, and cloud-first approach of The Things Stack that really fits best into an IT infrastructure of Deutsche Bahn.
In the ever-evolving landscape of IoT, it's not just the technology that matters, it's the partnerships and collaborations that shape the future. Hardware manufacturers are pushing the boundaries, developing devices that are not only reliable but also energy efficient, making the IoT dream a reality. Meanwhile, software companies are crafting sophisticated platforms that harness the power of data, turning raw information into actionable insights. Together, they're building the smart cities of tomorrow, where LoRaWAN is the connective tissue that binds it all together. This is the state of the LoRaWAN market today, a dynamic and thriving ecosystem where hardware and software companies come together to shape our connected future. The ecosystem is...
How to explain it? Most things in life are best when they are paired. For example, salt and pepper. I see this in the same way in the LoRaWAN technology. Every company should focus on their expertise. We are a hardware manufacturer, so this is our key competence. We need to get in contact with IoT solution provider who are doing the connectivity, the dashboarding and the AI.
In that combination, we can serve the market with the best fit solution. We operate in a rough spot. There are many network providers, there are a ton of IoT platforms. To me, for example, The Things Industries is a super easy choice.
We recommend it to all of our customers simply because we know that our devices don't have issues with The Things Industries LNS. To us it's easy when we find something that works well to recommend it to customers, and this is when it comes to LNS. We have integrations with more than 15 different LNS services, and with the IoT platforms, we help them, we give them advice, we give them free devices, that they can integrate it into their IoT platform, because obviously this makes sense.
It's about the no vendor lock-in. What we do in Deutsche Bahn as DB Systel, we provide for our customers within the Deutsche Bahn a connectivity solution for LoRaWAN, so they can connect their own devices, get the data into the cloud, and we do also develop scaleable services. We have services in office buildings to make office buildings smart.
We have services in maintenance. We have developed our own station clock talking LoRaWAN to the cloud infrastructure. Within Connexin, primarily, LoRaWAN is used for capturing data from water meters. We're going from a manual process, where the existing customers capture data manually, typically drive by or walk by.
We completely automate that process by using LoRaWAN water meters, which send their data over the air. All that's captured, and that includes different diagnostics also, so leaks can be detected, backflow, and other areas as well. I see it as a key opportunity with the water utility companies to get the gateway infrastructure in. And because of the way the meters are installed in the UK below ground, we have to densify the gateway deployments on the flip side above ground with our other applications. It allows plug and play. So for example, in Coventry, where we have hundreds of gateways, if we wanted to tackle legal requirements with compliancy, we can just ship those applications out very quickly to authorities.
The beauty of my job is that in one day, I can deal with several different use cases. The first thing to understand with LoRaWAN, this is, let's say, internet-oriented protocol, and you do not remain tied to a vertical. You can, in one day, experience with water metering, with smart cities topics, with smart parking, smart buildings. I cannot stop, okay? What is promising in my place of gateway manufacturer is definitely the water metering aspect that is really growing fast. We can see also some adoption in smart agriculture. This is very promising.
What I can share is that the surprise can come from time to time from unexpected markets. The ecosystem is very mature now from what I see and from being IT over 20 years, it seems at the moment one year is now 10 years worth of development. You're seeing things happen really quickly.
All the standards are in place with the LoRa Alliance, all the certification. We're at a place now where we know a sensor off the shelf, certified, it's going to be reliable, and it's just going to work and deliver that data the customer expects. According to our vision, IoT will be a game changer.
This has already happened because we know that there is a lot of optimization in the projects for smart building, but also an industrial projects for industrial IoT. We think that our help in order to change also this perception can be done in the physical world. For this, we call this Smart Country. Now the LoRaWAN is matched with the word LPWAN, that means Low Power, Wide Area Network.
But we can enable, with the satellite, the LPGAN, that means Low Power, Global Area Network, because we can move from a wide coverage that is a gateway coverage in terms of kilometers, link to a smart city, to a national or international coverage thanks to satellites. This will help a lot to simplify the monitoring of everything you want. For example, a use case that could be useful in the past months that there is a lot of issue linked to climate change could be the monitoring of a river, the monitoring of a glacier. Because today there is no real time monitoring of this kind of assets that can be done as now we are doing for industrial projects. Frankly speaking, it's not a LoRaWAN use case, but honestly, recovering people in snow from helicopters, from boats.
It's not only exciting, it's fun and useful. From everything I have done and seen, frankly speaking, that's my preferred moment. It's a very nice feeling to experience. We have one use case I would like to talk about, where LoRaWAN was really the game-changer.
Our customer, that's DB Energy, they are responsible to provide energy for the whole Deutsche Bahn, and they tried for years to get the data out of these locations in the data lake to better operate those locations. And all the process they tried was normally cable based and they didn't fit any business case. And then LoRaWAN was stepping by. We selected two partners to develop devices that can talk with Modbus with these assets. The devices are deployed in this location. LoRaWAN is providing coverage and now they really have their data in the data lake and this will enable them to more get into predictive maintenance for these locations.
LoRaWAN was really a game-changer on that. I think there are a lot of really interesting developments this year. For example, the zero touch provisioning of gateways, I think that's super important, makes things easier, reduces the friction points. Another thing that happened fairly this year was also the solar panels.
I think it's just the promise of not having batteries. It's super important. The thing is that if you invest into a very high quality batteries, those are expensive. And at volume, the solar panels might be almost to the price where it matches the high quality batteries. But then the high quality batteries, you have to replace them in 10 years. So you've got to send the person and the person going to a property costs, let's say, €50 per hour.
So the solar panels were something super interesting. Another thing that happened this year and has an amazing impact on deployments is the firmware upgrade over the year. I think that's essential. I cannot guarantee that any device from the first firmware version, it's flawless. Not only that, but I want to be able to add more functionalities.
I think the FUOTA was a real game-changer in the LoRaWAN world. EchoStar is a corporation. Now we are EchoStar Mobile, that is the European startup, because we are the Innovation Department of EchoStar.
We are in satellite business, legacy business, MSS, broadband business since 50 years. Now we have this new vision of IoT. Our vision is a little different from what we see in the market in the past five years that was just by calling satellites.
You have aggregation from sensor, and then you need a pipeline that is done with satellite. Instead, our vision now is, because this is feasible thanks to technology and also a LoRa technology that is one of these enablers, to create direct sensor to satellite. You can plug in a sensor, wherever you want, and then this sensor communicates the data to satellites, and then satellites flow this data to an IoT platform.
This can enable a lot of new cases that now are still not in place. What was really nice, we were able with the open-source approach of The Things, Industries and with the community network, we were really enabled to start very small with a small team with the first idea born in a DB hackathon, and then we were able to scale with the solution. Our vision is that really, LoRaWAN brings a lot of potential to drive digitalization within the Deutsche Bahn. It will be a long way to be there, but we are on a good way to get there. Very simple. I live in Grenoble in the French Alps,
right in the middle of the best ski resorts in the world, basically. We knew there was interest from those ski resort operators to secure their workers. They do a lot of avalanche triggering. They go rescue people themselves. They often put themselves into dangerous situations. How should we architecture that device? How do we make the recovery system work? How do we test it? And lately, how do we train the official recovery team? They need to know how to use our equipment.
I'm the one training those guys, for example. The future for Thermokon in the IoT market and the LoRaWAN market is hopefully that we are a well-established company in the IoT market that we have a huge awareness. Everybody knows us in the LoRaWAN world and what we are doing, and we get to come to the same expert level as we have in the electric market.
LoRaWAN a technology that thrives on practical applications, reminds us that knowledge isn't merely acquired, it's forged through hands-on experience. Across diverse industries, experts and practitioners willingly share their insights, each a testament to the valuable learning points gained through hands-on work. The biggest learning you'd learn every day, we're going into the unknown where people haven't really gone before, so a lot of the time at that scale, there's no references. It's challenging, but every day you have to think on your feet and adapt and change and improvise and keep pushing ahead. So continually improving our processes.
So the biggest learning in the last few months is that the market is growing rapidly, we have to create partnerships to serve the market and to offer the best solution to our end customers. That's the story. We have to find use cases. It's not the point that we talk about products or software solutions. We have to provide solutions which help our customers to save money to be more sustainable and solve a problem. One major learning and maybe also a recommendation for all who would like to step into LoRaWAN: put the use case in the front.
Don't build up a LoRaWAN network just for having a network. Get your customers really early involved to understand what can LoRaWAN bring as a benefit into their day-to-day business. You have to make up your mind about several things. Would you like to go with an open-source approach or maybe with a black box approach? Is an API-first-driven solution helping you to integrate all that into your own infrastructure, into your own IT systems? What about gateway management? Will that be important for you because you have your gateways maybe spreaded all over Germany, but you have to operate them remotely.
Once you have your answers to those questions, I think there's a really good ecosystem. Select your partners and then start agile. My advice would be, there's different factors in scaling. If you are manufacturing an end device, you have to scale at production. It's very different to build 100 devices than it is to build 100,000. Anybody starting in that area, there are now so many devices available out there that my number one recommendation would be do an extensive survey.
If there is a device that you can use without having to invent it, do it. In the end, it's going to be far cheaper to buy something that exists, even if it's more expensive than trying to develop your own from the ground up. Later on, once you're established and when you're selling, you can start really doing your own to lower your cost. That's a very frequent failure I have seen.
Exactly on the network server side, don't reinvent the wheel. It's tempting to just set up your own stuff and get it running yourself. However, I would really recommend going for an established player in that field and rent a solution at the beginning to get that out of your plate so you can really concentrate on your business use case and not try to just patch everything all the time. In our case, just keeping the gateways running is a challenge enough. We don't want to worry about network server and backend and things like this. For anybody that starts their journey now, I would say try to choose the right companies.
Try to choose companies you vibe with. Try to choose companies that have less touchpoints with you. The better the documentation is, the more information there is, the better.
Try to stay local. Let's say you go to the US. If a US person starts with LoRaWAN right now, they better try to find like-minded people, let's say distributors or hardware manufacturers that are in the US right now. Their manufacturing might be somewhere else, but at least they have a local office.
Because I feel like people often, they don't see the hidden requirements of actually working with an abroad company. The different time zones, the certification, the duties of an importer, for example. The best advice is find companies that have good documentation, don't require you to have a lot of touch points with them, but rather have automated things, and just people you vibe with, solutions that you feel excited about. In some use cases, LoRaWAN is definitely the good solution. If I take the example of water metering, clearly, LoRaWAN and NB-IoT are the two possible solutions that really exist today. Even LoRaWAN has some advantages.
My advice to a hardware company which starts new in the LoRaWAN world is to do the market study first to be focused on a specific topic, to bring a positive impact to the LoRaWAN world and to the ecosystem. Just get stuck in. Don't be scared. You're going to see problems and issues and that's all part and parcel of it.
You're innovating. You're doing things people haven't done before and you're in that position now to shape the future. I find it extremely exciting. In the ever-evolving landscape of IoT and LoRaWAN, easy implementation and scalability are not solitary achievements. They are the outcomes of collaboration.
Consider the fusion of satellite technology with LoRaWAN bringing connectivity to the most remote corners of the world. Hardware companies and integrators create seamless solutions that bridge the gap between hardware and software, simplifying complex IoT implementations. In the world of LoRaWAN, it's not just about technology, it's about the shared vision of a connected future, where problems are addressed, solutions are implemented, and communities are empowered. Collaboration is not just an option, it's the key to unlocking the full potential of this transformative technology. LoRaWAN is probably not the best technology out there.
It's not necessarily the cheapest one to deploy, but clearly its strengths is that so many people are now accustomed to it and getting used to it and know how to use it, that I think there is real strength in that collective movement. LoRaWAN is in a state where it's going to be hard to displace and replace overnight by something else. I'm quite confident that's going to last a little bit now.