Kigali takes smart approach

Inmarsat has deployed its LoRaWAN (a form of Low Power Wide Area Network) infrastructure around the city of Kigali to support the Rwandan capital’s flagship smart city project.

The network, which will be active for an initial period of a year, will act as the connectivity platform for a variety of Internet of Things (IoT) applications, and will provide a blueprint for smart city projects throughout Africa.

The LoRaWAN network has been developed in partnership with Actility, and will provide city-wide coverage that enables a variety of organisations to develop and deploy IoT applications on a large scale, as well as allowing entrepreneurs to easily connect their front-end IoT devices through a middleware layer. Applications could address any number of urban needs, including transport, utilities, health and education.

Paul Gudonis, president, Inmarsat Enterprise, commented, ‘Whilst many commentators have enthused about the possibilities of the IoT for the urban environment, from increasing utility usage efficiency to enabling a smooth network of autonomous cars, the reality is that it is still relatively untested and in its infancy. Kigali is taking the lead with its smart city project, creating an IoT ecosystem where both private and government organisations can experiment with this technology in a vibrant and lively city.’

The deployment coincides with the Transform Africa Summit, a forum that will bring together African Presidents, other dignitaries, and leading technology innovators, to discuss plans for building a smarter Africa.