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Move to test satellite IoT connectivity service

Semtech and EchoStar Mobile, a mobile satellite services provider, have announced the launch of an initiative to test satellite connectivity services enabled by the LoRaWAN protocol.

“With our technology collaborator, Semtech, and as a new member of the LoRa Alliance, we are excited to explore the use of next-generation LoRaWAN network technology to bring new satellite-based connectivity services to the Internet of Things (IoT) market,” said Telemaco Melia, Senior Director of Commercial Operations at EchoStar Mobile. “New LoRa satellite services are expected to bring lower price points to the market, opening up a larger addressable opportunity across key industries including logistics, asset tracking, transportation, utilities, agriculture, and maritime.”

The LoRa Alliance, which develops, maintains and promotes the LoRaWAN protocol for low power wide area networks (LPWANs), recently expanded the LoRaWAN protocol to include Long Range – Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (LR-FHSS) data rates.

LR-FHSS extends the LoRaWAN protocol’s support to enable direct data links from end nodes to satellites by leveraging either the Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM) unlicensed band, or, in the case of EchoStar Mobile, through licensed spectrum, which provides a differentiated service versus the ISM band. LR-FHSS can support millions of end nodes and delivers a new level of robustness for IoT services.

“It’s estimated that only 10% of the world’s surface has terrestrial connectivity. Semtech’s LoRa devices integrated with LR-FHSS allow satellites to connect IoT devices in the vast remote areas around the globe to enable IoT solutions with an unmatched continuum of coverage and performance,” explained Marc Pegulu, VP of IoT product marketing and strategy for Semtech’s Wireless and Sensing Products Group. “Our work with EchoStar Mobile and LoRa Alliance members is expected to achieve complementary satellite and terrestrial LoRaWAN network connectivity services for customers who require global coverage from land to sea to air.”

Author
Neil Tyler

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