Sigfox strikes deal with Samsung to integrate its protocol into Artik platform

Sigfox, the French startup that aims to roll out a low-throughput global-sized Internet of Things (IoT) network over the next five years, is integrating its network protocol into Samsung's new Artik platform. The move should give Sigfox a boost in its stated efforts to establish a "fourth protocol" behind GSM, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.

The move comes as Samsung Ventures revealed its investment into Sigfox, though terms were not disclosed. The deal also comes just a few months after Sigfox raised $115 million, the largest round of venture capital in the history of France, notes Venture Beat.

According to Samsung, Artik is an open platform that's designed to enable faster and simpler development of new enterprise, industrial and consumer applications for the IoT. The platform includes a best-in-class family of integrated production-ready modules, advanced software, development boards, drivers, tools, security features and cloud connectivity designed to help accelerate development IoT devices, solutions and services.

Adding Sigfox technology to the Internet-connection options in the Samsung Artik platform provides a low-cost and energy-efficient alternative suited for small-message communication that the vast majority of IoT-connected devices will need, according to the companies. That integration will allow developers to quickly activate the network through a simple cloud connectivity subscription.

"At Samsung, we believe that the Internet of Things will deliver huge benefits--to society and to us as individuals. With the introduction of the Samsung Artik platform, we set out to accelerate innovation in hardware, software and services for the IoT, to allow the technology to more quickly tackle global challenges," said Young Sohn, president and chief strategy officer at Samsung Electronics, in a press release. "As part of our Samsung Artik ecosystem, Sigfox technology represents a key step forward for the IoT, as it makes it simpler for developers to create low-cost, low-power devices and services that easily connect to the network."

Sigfox says that unlike systems that are still in the development stage, its ultra-narrowband (UNB) technology for connecting devices is providing scalable, long-range, two-way connectivity and high capacity in more than a dozen countries and major cities.

"By integrating Sigfox technology in Artik and including it in the platform's ecosystem, Samsung is fueling innovation and making it very easy for developers to create new applications and services that will help deliver the potential of the Internet of Things," said Ludovic Le Moan, CEO of Sigfox, in the same release. "Moreover, this integration positions Sigfox technology as the 'fourth protocol' for Internet connectivity, joining GSM, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi."

Sigfox marketing chief Thomas Nicholls told FierceWirelessTech earlier this year that the startup had conducted several pilot projects of its network technology in various locations across the United States and was gearing up for a major commercial push in the United States this year.

Sigfox and Samsung certainly aren't alone in the quest to foster an IoT ecosystem. According to a March report by the Rethink research firm, the fundamental difference between Sigfox and LoRa is that Sigfox focuses on an ultra-narrow-band implementation while the LoRaWAN standard, which was developed by the LoRa (Long Range) Alliance, has opted for a wideband CDMA approach.

For more:
- see the release
- see this Venture Beat article

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