The LoRa Alliance has announced that that member company EchoStar Mobile, a premier global provider of satellite communication solutions, has joined its board of directors, validating the strong market opportunity for LoRaWAN in satellite IoT connectivity. LoRaWAN has quickly achieved leadership in low power wide area networking (LPWAN) connectivity via satellite, with LoRa Alliance members increasingly offering a variety of options for cost-effective, satellite-based connectivity in response to market demand.
“Early on, the LoRa Alliance ecosystem recognised the significant opportunities for LoRaWAN connectivity using satellites,” said Donna Moore, CEO and chairwoman of the LoRa Alliance. “To support this market, we added long-range frequency hopping spread spectrum (LR-FHSS) to LoRaWAN, enabling numerous benefits including license-free connectivity that reduces costs, providing direct link to satellite which is ideal for hard-to-reach locations, along with low power requirements and increased network capacity. This allowed us to take the leadership position in the LPWAN space by enabling extended IoT connectivity with truly global reach, resulting in leading global telcos announcing deployments of satellite extensions for LoRaWAN and cellular IoT. I am very excited to have EchoStar Mobile’s Telemaco Melia join our Board of Directors; it is a strong move to ensure LoRaWAN continues to meet the needs of this high-growth market, and I look forward to EchoStar Mobile’s perspective and contributions to the leadership of the LoRa Alliance.”
The LoRa Alliance has a large ecosystem providing LoRaWAN via satellite or delivering solutions using them. A sampling of LoRa Alliance members active in this area includes Actility, EchoStar Mobile, Eutelsat, Hello Space Systems Teknoloji A.S., Lacuna Space Ltd., Plan-S Satellite & Space Technologies Inc., Senet, TELNET and Wyld Networks, as well as hundreds of members using LoRaWAN over satellites for connectivity. LoRaWAN connectivity using satellite has proven its value across a wide range of applications, including metering, asset tracking, structural monitoring, utility and water distribution networks, precision agriculture, wilderness/remote/extreme sports safety trackers, off-grid tank delivery, remote asset monitoring, environmental/wildlife monitoring, and more.
“In our ongoing IoT research, we are increasingly hearing strong positive sentiment about LoRaWAN and satellite connectivity,” said Robin Duke-Woolley, CEO and Chief Analyst, Beecham Research. “There is growing expectation that LoRaWAN is poised to change the economics of satellite for IoT, making a wide range of low data rate applications economically viable in areas where they are often not currently feasible. This includes asset tracking across borders, and many remote monitoring needs.”
“EchoStar Mobile’s commercial launch of a real-time LoRaWAN based service in 2022 demonstrated commitment to our vision of providing standards-based satellite IoT services. Standards are known for reducing costs and LoRaWAN is no exception. Lower cost satellite transceivers and service combined with a single network technology stack enables all IoT devices, whether connected via satellite or terrestrially, to take advantage of LoRaWAN to deliver better return on investment and address unmet demand. Our wide area satellite coverage has created market opportunities for LoRa Alliance members to deploy their solutions in remote and low-density areas previously uneconomic to serve with terrestrial LoRaWAN infrastructure,” said Telemaco Melia, VP and GM of EchoStar Mobile. “We are honoured to join the LoRa Alliance board of directors to continue to advance the success of LoRaWAN in satellite based IoT.”
“It is not surprising to see that the low-cost, long-range, and easy-to-access nature of LoRaWAN technology is spreading from terrestrial networks to space-based ones,” said Alper Yegin, CTO of Actility and Chair of the Technical Committee in the LoRa Alliance. “The collaborative spirit of LoRa Alliance members, coupled with the low-cost integration among networks, is leading to the unification of all kinds of networks, whether public, private, or community-based, both terrestrial and satellite-based, working together to provide ubiquitous and low-cost connectivity across the planet.”
“Satellites are poised to revolutionise the IoT landscape,” said Muzaffer Duysal, CEO of Hello Space. “Devices with LoRaWAN infrastructure can communicate easily and directly with satellites, enabling seamless and continuous sensor data transfer over vast distances, all while harnessing the reliability and cost-efficiency of satellite connectivity. This technology supports diverse sectors including agriculture, maritime, energy, logistics, and industry, positioning it at the cutting edge of satellite IoT solutions.”
As one of the earliest satellite companies to join the LoRa Alliance, Lacuna demonstrated LoRaWAN over satellite five years ago and since then has proven commercial viability with technical advancements towards massive capacity and the proliferation of proven use cases. “With LoRaWAN over satellite, sales reach is no longer limited to coverage from terrestrial networks, solutions can now be promoted to the global market, knowing that any device under the sky will get data through to the cloud. Being a member of the LoRa Alliance has undoubtedly added value through collaborations with stakeholders ensuring that the regulatory framework for LoRaWAN over satellites is robust and secures the future of a truly global LoRaWAN coverage,” said Martin von der Ohe, Lacuna Director of Regulatory Affairs.
“LoRaWAN has a pivotal role in advancing IoT connectivity,” said Tugay Güzel, CEO of Plan-S Satellite and Space Technologies. “LEO satellite constellations and state-of-the-art LR-FHSS technology are poised to transform global IoT connectivity with uninterrupted, widespread coverage, filling the connectivity void in distant regions and optimising industrial IoT applications for a seamlessly connected and streamlined future.”
“IoT solutions will drive productivity improvements and economic growth for decades to come, but to maximise outcomes, a comprehensive and cost-effective network coverage strategy is needed,” said Dave Kjendal, CTO and COO at Senet. “With wireless harmonisation expanding to include the integration of different terrestrial network types and the seamless integration of terrestrial and satellite coverage, the use cases for LoRaWAN are rapidly expanding. Further, with LR-FHSS supported by the LoRaWAN protocol, the reliability of satellite access in difficult to reach areas is improved, meaning global connectivity challenges are no longer a barrier to success.”
“With the development of LoRaWAN LR-FHSS it is now possible to connect IoT devices, even in the most remote locations, directly to Low Earth Orbiting satellites,” said Alastair Williamson, CEO of Wyld Networks. “Delivering data at scale is essential for many business activities, from energy to agriculture and environmental monitoring. LoRaWAN sensor-to satellite solutions are designed to meet this fast-growing IoT market.”