Crown Castle enables Everynet’s national IoT network

cell tower
Crown Castle's assets include more than 40,000 cell towers and nearly 80,000 route miles of fiber. (Pixabay)

Everynet, which bills itself as the world’s largest operator for national LoRaWAN networks, announced its plans for launching a LoRaWAN IoT network in the U.S.

Everynet is using Crown Castle’s tower assets, initially targeting the top 36 metropolitan areas and key corridors across the U.S. It’s expected to go live by the end of 2021.

Everynet map
Everynet expects to go live by the end of this year. 

Everynet will be putting its infrastructure on Crown Castle’s towers, of which it has 40,000 in the U.S., as well as rooftops and other structures. The privately-held IoT company also has access to key logistics intersections, airports, seaports and interstate crossings, according to Tom Nelson, chief customer officer of Everynet.

One of the operative words used to describe the new offering is “carrier grade,” and yes, it will be competing with the IoT networks offered by wireless carriers in the U.S. In fact, wireless carriers could even become customers of Everynet, which expects to serve mobile network operators, MVNOs and ISPs.

“There’s going to be a variety of solutions” hitting the market, Nelson said. His background includes cellular; he was in the emerging solutions/IoT group at Sprint, as well as Jasper, which was acquired by Cisco in 2016.

RELATED: Semtech, Helium team on nationwide LoRaWAN network

Formed in 2014, Everynet already has experience establishing LoRaWAN IoT networks in other regions, including Brazil, Indonesia, Spain, United Kingdom, Italy, Ireland and Iceland. 

“We’re seeing a phenomenal demand” for low-power, wide area networking solutions, he said.

In Indonesia, for example, Everynet teamed up with Telkom, which is offering a combination of both cellular and LoRaWAN solutions. “So we don’t think it’s a one size fits all. We think that there’s a lot of different technologies, and taking advantage of this low-cost network, for those certain use cases, can help broaden their portfolio and help them bring interesting applications to their customers.”

Of course, Everynet can step in where some of the cellular 2G and 3G networks are stepping back. Like a lot of IoT solutions, it sees an opportunity to fill in where cellular operators are switching off old networks to make way for newer generations. Estimates vary, but by some accounts, 70 million devices are out there and in need of homes.

As for existing LoRaWAN devices, there are plenty of those out there as well, including Comcast’s MachineQ service, and Everynet isn’t ruling out a partnership with them. “It’s open to all of those players to take advantage of,” Nelson said.

It’s aligned with the LoRa Alliance, which has roaming and partnerships around the globe. LoRaWAN originated with a company called Semtech, which remains very much involved in the technology’s ecosystem.

RELATED: LoRa Alliance comes prepared to talk IoT security

With Crown Castle, Everynet struck a 15-year commitment, ensuring LoRaWAN customers can monetize IoT deployments like smart sensors and monitoring tools. 

“It was an easy decision to work with Everynet to build out their LoRaWAN IoT connectivity. We both see the long-term value of LoRaWAN in the U.S. and embrace shared infrastructure access for customers. We look forward to helping Everynet go live with a much-needed network,” said Paul Reddick, vice president of strategy, business and product development for Crown Castle, in a statement. Reddick was a key player at Sprint during the heyday of its IoT efforts.

Nelson declined to reveal details about Everynet's current capital structure or backing.

“We’re fully funded to launch our network in the United States,” he said. “We’re ready to go. The assets are there. We’re ready and excited to bring the services to market to all of our telecom and wholesale channels.”