LoRa Devices: Bringing Flexible IoT Solutions for Smarter Homes and Buildings
The market for smart homes and buildings is forecast to reach yearly revenues of up to $36 billion in the U.S. alone by 2022. The Internet of Things (IoT)-based solutions offer the potential to create increased efficiencies in these connected homes and buildings. With the deployment of sensors and hardware, 22.3 million smart home systems were installed in North America by the end of 2017, according to Berg Insight Smart Homes and Home Automation. By 2022, the number of households adopting smart home systems is forecast to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 23.1 percent, resulting in 63 million smart homes.
Author: Byron BeMiller, Director of Vertical Marketing for Smart Buildings in Semtech's Wireless and Sensing Products Group
Solutions leveraging Semtech's LoRa® devices and the LoRaWAN® open protocol are a leading choice for low-power wide-area networking (LPWAN)-based IoT solutions today, providing ultra-long range and low power capabilities for a comprehensive array of smart home and building applications.
Iioote, a Swedish independent systems integrator offering IoT solutions and services, has developed a consumer line of wireless and battery powered, LoRa-based humidity and temperature sensors. These solutions install in areas of the home with a high risk of water leakage, for example in bathrooms, kitchens and basements. The sensors connect to a public or private residential network based on the LoRaWAN protocol and report humidity levels regularly. In addition, homeowners utilize iioote's web portal tool to monitor the data for humidity trends. In the event of a leakage situation, real-time leakage alerts notify homeowners, allowing swift action to prevent thousands of dollars of potential property damage.
With an initial investment of two percent of its total office/facilities budget, Capgemini, a global leader in consulting, technology services and digital transformation, expects annual savings of more than 10 percent of its real estate costs by increasing the occupancy in its offices from 65 percent to 75 percent. To achieve this very rapid payback on investment, Capgemini developed an IoT sensor solution based on Semtech's LoRa devices consisting of:
- Presence sensors – used in meeting rooms to get real-time usage, which is shown on a floor plan in a mobile app
- Desk sensors – used for desks and meeting room tables to measure actual usage. This information is used for right-sizing, but also to show in real time where seats are available
- Comfort sensors – used to measure CO2, noise, temperature, humidity, and light to bring this information to the users of the office (and also to signal extremes)
Polysense Technologies Inc., an innovative leader in enterprise IoT solutions for fiber and wireless sensing, created a Structure Health Monitoring (SHM) system leveraging LoRa devices. The system consists of a LoRa-based gateway and a proprietary Cloud-based data management platform to enable remote and real-time monitoring of building structure safety and integrity. A four to six-story building is equipped with an end-to-end solution consisting of several sensors on the walls and roof to measure building wall crack growth, tilt and vibration. Often a soil moisture sensor is deployed to monitor water saturation at the building's foundation. Typically, one gateway is used per residential complex. Additionally, Polysense provides the LoRaWAN-based network and mobile applications for real-time monitoring of building status. As a whole, Polysense's solution deploys at a fraction of the cost of traditional wired solutions or human inspection.
LoRa devices' low power qualities and ability to penetrate dense building materials make it an ideal platform for IoT-connected smart home and building devices. In addition, the long range capabilities make it possible to track assets that stray from home. For more about LoRa for smart homes and buildings, visit the smart homes and buildings applications page of the Semtech website.
LoRa is a registered trademark or service mark of Semtech Corporation or its affiliates.
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