| Izah Azahari |
AS THE main telecommuni-cations provider in the country, Telekom Brunei Berhad (TelBru) is moving towards facilitating alternative sources of technological assurances with the introduction of long-range, low-powered, low-bandwidth, low-cost sensors.
This was unveiled yesterday during TelBru’s ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) Open Day at The Empire Hotel & Country Club. The initiative is being held with the support and cooperation of LoRa Alliance through one of its founding members, Sagemcom, that has already made its mark in Europe, the United States, New Zealand, and Japan through the research and implementation of Long Range (LoRa) technology.
TelBru’s IoT Open Day featured a presentation by the Chief Marketing Officer of TelBru Lim Ming Soon along with a live IoT showcase and demo; and a speech by the Director of IoT Business Development and Strategic Partnerships of Sagemcom Dr Thierry Lestable.
The event also ran alongside the signing of an official Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between TelBru and Sagemcom, which encompasses the provisions and deployment for a Low Power Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN), and Siconia products and solutions, while providing the relevant training and support to better implement LoRa technology in Brunei Darussalam.
Signing on behalf of TelBru was its Chief Executive Officer David Kay, while Sagemcom was represented by Dr Lestable.
TelBru has already deployed five LoRa base stations in the Brunei-Muara District, with a coverage radius that encompasses the entirety of the district and even out to sea. Currently, plans are in the works to eventually provide coverage for the rest of the country.
The introduction of these facilities opens up an alternative stream of potential business opportunities for the tech-savvy segment of Brunei’s population, including the development of mobile applications to address challenges that require attention – all of which translates into efficiency and improvements on business-as-usual practices, or innovation, that can be exported.
Among the applications for geographically challenging locations include bettering agricultural farming techniques for small-and-medium time farmers through the monitoring of yields by quantifying environmental impacts through data collection; as well as search-and-rescue purposes for jungle trekkers, where traditional network coverage is non-existent.
Powered by batteries that can last at least a decade without the need for wireless internet connectivity, the sensors that ride on LoRa technology address challenges presented by wireless networks that have limited reach to rural areas such as the outskirts of Tutong, Temburong, and Kuala Belait, where the installation of such wireless infrastructure is not financially commensurate to business operations.
Following High Speed Broadband (HSBB) rollouts on top of the backbone of TelBru’s fibre optic network, the deployment of LoRa technology complements TelBru’s efforts in the introduction of its IoT, and the subsequent facilitation of Brunei’s Smart Nation Initiative.
These investments aim to tap into what is described as a lucrative global industry, where ICT observers estimate the IoT’s economic impact at 11 per cent of the world economy by 2025.
More information can be obtained by contacting TelBru at its headquarters, or through any of the company’s social media platforms.