A major infrastructure agreement has been signed between energy distribution utility, TasNetworks, subsidiary business 42-24 and National Narrowband Network Co (NNNCo) to roll out a state-wide enterprise-grade Internet of Things (IoT) Network.
The agreement is being heralded as an unprecedented partnership between a regulated utility, unregulated utility business and a licensed telecommunications carrier.
The three-way deal will see TasNetworks and NNNCo build the network with LoRaWAN gateways deployed on the utility’s assets across Tasmania.
TasNetworks will explore opportunities to use the network to connect IoT devices for its own use cases such as grid safety, street lighting, and digital metering.
42-24 will be tasked with selling connectivity to third parties for their own IoT applications including local councils, enterprise, agriculture and other utilities.
TasNetworks CEO, Lance Balcombe, said, “Any digital innovation that boosts safety, control and efficiency is good for us, and good for Tasmanians.
“This agreement opens the door to a host of innovations around grid safety, street lighting and digital metering, to name a few.
“TasNetworks is determined to help Tasmanians recover strongly from the COVID-19 crisis and lockdown.
“Smart technology that helps us boost efficiency, and helps customers save time and money, can be a crucial part of that mission.”
42-24 spokesperson, Kelly Walker, said, “Having access to enterprise-grade connectivity across Tasmania will bring significant opportunities to our cities, farms and enterprises deploying their own IoT solutions.
“It could be a business tracking its assets, farmers monitoring irrigators or soil moisture, cities and towns improving energy efficiencies, or a water utility protecting its critical infrastructure.
“There’s a huge range of devices and applications available in the LoRaWAN IoT ecosystem that will enable the market to build a smarter and more sustainable Tasmania.”
NNNCo will begin building the network in the second half of 2020, extending the coverage of its National Narrowband Network.
NNNCo CEO, Rob Zagarella, said, “This is a significant infrastructure partnership agreement that shows what’s possible when a utility is able to partner hand in glove with a flexible network operator like NNNCo.
“The investment in this infrastructure in Tasmania is an important development, not just for Australia but for IoT globally.”
LoRaWAN networks are growing rapidly across the world, with more than 130 network operators in 91 countries and over 180 million LoRaWAN-based end nodes forecast to be deployed worldwide on public and private networks by the end of 2020.