Digital Catapult, an organisation that helps small businesses grow and scale faster, has announced a new programme to create 50 Internet of Things (IoT) base stations in London in a bid to drive open innovation.
The Digital Catapult Things Connected programme will roll out 50 LoRaWAN base stations. The company claims this will be the UK’s largest Internet of Things LoRaWAN network.
LoRaWAN is a network architecture designed to support low-cost, mobile communication for connected technologies. In theory, this should reduce some of the barriers currently facing IoT start-ups in the capital.
Driving IoT innovation
Supposedly, the free to use programme will allow London’s businesses to connect to the base stations, which will act as test-beds to support IoT technologies.
In essence, Digital Catapult hopes that Things Connected will ‘accelerate the adoption of IoT’ by empowering the tech community to ‘test their IoT innovations,’ according to its CEO, Jeremy Silver.
The organisation thinks London could stand to benefit from more technologies that will improve life in the capital. Think of a future where asthma sufferers receive regular updates on air quality from data collected by sensors on buildings, and you get a sense for where we’re heading.
In order to deliver the programme, Digital Catapult is collaborating with a number of partners, including BT and network provider, everynet.
London is open
Deputy mayor for business, Rajesh Agrawal, believes the programme will keep London at the forefront of technological and digital innovation.
“By continuing to make our city smart and connected, we are showing that London is Open as we work to improve the lives and wellbeing of many by tackling the big issues we face in healthcare, transport and energy,” he said.
In exclusive comments emailed to Internet of Business, Jeremy Silver spoke of the importance of the Internet of Things for the UK economy.
“To help tackle some of the UK’s challenges in energy, transport and healthcare, to name but a few, it is paramount that the barriers are removed in enabling business to successfully implement IoT to its full potential. This is a vital move not only for London, we want to capture more of the digital dividend in the UK economy. To do so, it is fundamental that we accelerate the adoption of the IoT.”
“Things Connected will provide a test-bed to experiment with IoT innovations, that will help our tech communities across the country to grow and help improve the quality of life for many.”
“Innovation is fundamental to growing the UK digital economy and Things Connected can act as a catalyst. We are starting something that is incredibly exciting to realise the amazing potential of the Internet of Things. This acceleration will reaffirm that London is open and ready to innovate.”
If the programme is successful, it is hoped that additional low-power wide area network (LPWAN) technologies will be included as the network develops.