Actility, one of the companies intent on growing the Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) technology known as LoRa, announced that it has selected Stripe, a San Francisco-based technology company, to accelerate the global rollout of ThingPark Market.
Actility made the announcement to coincide with Mobile World Congress Americas, which is happening at the Moscone Center in San Francisco this week.
ThingPark Market already offers an e-commerce platform for LoRaWAN IoT, offering for sale more than 175 products from more than 75 companies around the world. By using Stripe Connect, ThingPark Market will enable payments from buyers to sellers in their local currencies in nearly 30 countries, as well as accelerate the global expansion of the platform.
In fact, thanks to Stripe’s digital payment capability, Actility expects to see the number of IoT solutions available through ThingPark market increase by a factor of three by the end of 2017, according to Christophe François, senior vice president for Marketing & Digital at Actility.
The U.S. has been one of its top targets for developing ThingPark Market, and it built the platform from the beginning with U.S. government commerce requirements in mind. It already has sellers that want to be part of the industrial IoT market in the U.S., so now with Stripe, they have a seamless one-stop solution.
“We think it’s a very significant move” and Actility is already seeing a lot of interest coming from the IoT solutions sellers and from those who see the benefit of a marketplace for complete B2B solutions. “We think it’s the right time and we have the right partners and the right technology,” François told FierceWirelessTech.
Initially offering devices operating in U.S. LoRaWAN frequency bands, ThingPark Market will begin to offer localized applications and LPWA connectivity solutions in early 2018.
Actility is a founding member of the LoRa Alliance, which saw Comcast join its board in April. This past summer, Comcast announced it would expand its LoRaWAN-based enterprise IoT service, which it calls machineQ, to 12 U.S. markets.
The cable company cited interest in the technology coming from a range of industries, including healthcare (patient monitoring, laboratory sciences tracking), public utilities (remote utility metering), automotive (asset tracking, telemetry) and smart cities (outdoor lighting, waste management, utility grid monitoring.)
The biggest LoRa player in the U.S. to date, Senet is building a LoRa network in the unlicensed 900 MHz band in locations across the country. Senet CTO Dave Kjendal told FierceWirelessTech in May that LoRaWAN still has advantages over even cellular-based NB-IoT solutions. Cellular's NB-IoT technology specifically brings the power envelope “closer to where we operate, but it’s still arguably two to three times more power-hungry than an equivalent LoRaWAN solution is,” he said.