Samsung rolls out LoRa IoT network in South Korea

Samsung rolls out LoRa IoT network in South Korea

Samsung brings LoRa to South Korea

Samsung Electronics and SK Telecom have partnered to roll-out what it claims is the world’s first commercial IoT-dedicated LoRaWAN IoT network. 

Announcing the news on its website today, Samsung said that the network will be deployed across Korea using the 900 MHz frequency band, with the commercial service hitting Daegu – the country’s fourth largest city – from next month. It will then become available nationwide midway through this year.

Daegu will serve as a test bed for the IoT network, with Samsung saying that the focus here will be on setting up and adopting infrastructure for renewable energy solutions, and cloud platforms and big data analytics for healthcare and medical services. Electric vehicle infrastructure will also be established for autonomous/driverless cars.

For example, streetlights in the city will collect weather and traffic information using IoT sensors, enabling cost savings by automatically adjusting the lighting level and also sending air pollution status information. This is similar to the partner struck by Philips and Vodafone, and has shades of other projects ongoing in London and around the UK.

“With the early deployment of a nationwide IoT network, SK Telecom will be able to maintain its position as pioneer in the field of telecommunications,” said Lee Jong-bong, executive vice president and head of infra division at SK Telecom.

“SK Telecom will continue to work closely with partners including Samsung to deliver new value and convenience to both individual and enterprise customers over the IoT network.”

“Now is a critical moment for ICT companies looking for new future business opportunities such as IoT services,” said Youngky Kim, president and head of networks business at Samsung Electronics. “We are very pleased to partner with SK Telecom for its pioneering IoT vision. Samsung will contribute in creating the ecosystem for enabling significant changes driven by new IoT services.”

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Samsung’s LoRa network goes mainstream

The LoRaWAN (Long Range Wide Area Network) will use the 900MHz frequency band, which is part of the unlicensed, public spectrum known as the Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM) band.

To avoid clogging up band capacity, Samsung says that the IoT network will employ the “Listen Before Talk” (LBT) function, where devices essentially wait their turn. Additionally, some services with lighter data needs will utilize a separate network, the Internet of Small Things (IoST). This is built on LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) technology and transmits small amounts of data at slower speeds of below 5 Kbps.

Samsung’s IoT strategy combines network technology and solutions with leadership across all business units, including consumer electronics and chipsets. This synergy makes Samsung unique, delivering successful IoT assets at an industry-leading pace.

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