Connected IoT devices are changing the way we gather data, transact, and function across nearly every industry. The landscape of rural America will be transformed with opportunities for sustainability, increased productivity, streamlined operations, and improved efficiency. The global market for IoT is expected to reach $520 billion in 2021 which is more than double the 2017 market of $235 billion. But how are the growth and advancements in IoT technology impacting rural America and offering growth opportunities for carriers?
Connectivity and Growth of LoRaWAN
The standardization of LoRaWAN specification has paved the way for carriers to offer hybrid LoRaWAN and cellular connectivity for rural applications. Connectivity is key for IoT and LoRaWAN enables wireless devices where traditional networks are unavailable. The cost-effectiveness of LoRaWAN and adoption of the technology by sensor device manufactures will enable towns, rural companies, farmers, and ranchers to select IoT devices that address operational goals. Furthermore, rural wireless and broadband providers will recognize LoRaWAN as complementary to existing connectivity which will lead to further adoption across rural America.
Water Conservation & Pollution Management
The population of the United States has doubled in the past 50 years and water consumption has tripled. It is expected that by 2024 that at least 40 states will experience water shortages which will intensify water conservation. Agriculture consumes approximately 80 percent of ground and surface water in the U.S. Concerted efforts to optimize and conserve in agriculture are needed to preserve the water supply. Utilizing IoT devices will enable fact-based decisions about the irrigation needs of crops which will benefit yields while reducing the cost of watering. Communities and agencies will adopt IoT meters to measure and optimize water distribution while streams, rivers, and lakes will be monitored for pollution to prevent impacts on drinking water and the environment.
Route Optimization & Carbon Reduction
For years delivery companies have been optimizing routes for efficiency, travel time, and environmental impact. This optimization has led to significantly lower fuel use and vehicle emissions while meeting the demands of customers. Wireless IoT devices and route management applications will enable traditional service providers and government agencies to recognize similar benefits. This includes the fill level of waste bins, vegetable oil containers, and recycling bins to determine whether a truck should be sent for pickup. Fuel and propane distributors will know the fuel level at remote locations to optimize the delivery route. In the end, the companies and agencies operate more efficiently, increase profit, and reduce carbon emissions.
The Connected Farm
Farming has been transformed into a technology-driven operation. IoT devices in the field will further increase efficiency and yields to meet the needs of the growing population. Moisture levels of the soil and real-time nutrient data is enabled with wireless IoT devices. Measuring nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) in real time will allow growers and agronomists to determine ways to increase yields while also preventing unnecessary fertilizer applications. Beyond the field, new devices will enable users to track the location of cattle, measure water levels of stock tanks, and identify sick livestock. Micro-weather stations will issue an alert of frost risk for specialty crops which can result in losing hundreds of thousands of dollars. With all IoT solutions for the connected farm, the goal of saving money, increasing yields, or improving efficiency is achievable. The reach of IoT is nearly limitless in farming.
IoT and the Future
With the benefits of IoT, water resources, food production, pollution levels, and endless other operations can be monitored 24 hours a day, reducing waste and ensuring America’s resources are sustainable for years to come. The advancements in IoT will provide farmers, ranchers, companies, and government agencies data that will lead to increased productivity, streamlined operations, increased yields, and improved efficiency across a range of applications. Plus, widespread adoption of LoRaWAN connectivity will fuel new growth opportunities for carriers.
IoT America is redefining the wireless ecosystem and extending innovative technologies to rural America utilizing remotely monitored and controlled sensor technologies. The company’s managed IoT solutions combines wireless communication, data analytics, and artificial intelligence to generate new revenues for carrier partners. Visit www.iot-americas.com for more information.
Read More at The CCA Voice Spring/Summer 2019