France-based Sigfox is expanding into Finland as the Internet of Things (IoT) specialist further ramps up its global rollout plans.
The move means that Finland is the 19th country where the Sigfox network is operating or being deployed. The company is teaming up with Connected Finland for the deployment and is targeting coverage of 85 per cent of the population by spring 2017.
Sigfox focuses on the deployment of a proprietary low power wide area (LPWA) network that is designed to connect new consumer devices with very low power and data throughput requirements. Its goal is to enable companies to manage very low average revenue per user (ARPU) and still be profitable.
The company's approach is to roll out its own network market-by-market and sell data subscriptions via distributors such as Connected Finland or Arqiva in the UK. Sigfox itself acts as the service distributor in France and the U.S., where it now covers the metropolitan areas of the 20 largest cities and is targeting 100 cities or regions by the end of 2016.
Globally, Sigfox aims to be present in more than 30 countries by the end of the year. It said it has now registered more than 7 million devices on its networks, and wants to establish a global network for low power connectivity for billions of connected devices that it said will make up the vast majority of the IoT.
Generally, LPWA interest and take-up has been gathering momentum in recent months. Sigfox itself recently signed up Atari, which is moving back into the hardware market with an agreement to produce a range of IoT products that will connect to the Sigfox network.
Alternative non-cellular, proprietary LPWA options include the LoRa Alliance with the LoRaWAN standard, Silver Spring Networks and Ingenu, which has developed IoT network technology called random phase multiple access (RPMA). These technologies all use unlicensed spectrum.
Cellular LPWA options, meanwhile, primarily include EC-GSM, NB-IoT (now renamed LTE Cat-M2) and LTE Cat-M1. Here, the technologies will use licensed spectrum and fall under the 3GPP specification programme.
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