French startup Sigfox recently showcased its Atmel-powered global cellular connectivity solution for the Internet of Things (IoT) at the Atmel booth during Embedded World 2014 in Nuremberg, Germany.
According to company rep Jacques Husser, Sigfox-ready devices connect to the Internet without any geographically dependent connectivity costs or location-specific network configuration. The worldwide connectivity solution is managed through the Sigfox Network Operator partnership program, effectively linking local ecosystems to the global network. That is why, says Husser, the phrase “one network, a billion dreams” has become the company’s slogan.
Indeed, SIGFOX utilizes UNB (Ultra Narrow Band) radio technology to connect devices to its global network. The use of UNB is key to providing a scalable, high-capacity network, with very low energy consumption, while maintaining a simple and easy to rollout star-based cell infrastructure. The network operates in the globally available ISM bands (license-free frequency bands) and co-exists in these frequencies with other radio technologies – without any risk of collisions or capacity problems.
Sigfox currently uses the most popular European ISM band on 868MHz (as defined by ETSI and CEPT), along with 902MHz in the USA (as defined by the FCC), depending on specific regional regulations.
Sigfox secures communications in a number of ways, including anti-replay, message scrambling and sequencing. Perhaps most importantly, only the device vendors understand the actual data exchanged between the device and the IT systems. Simply put, Sigfox acts as a transport channel, pushing the data towards the customer’s IT system.
Interested in learning more about Sigfox? You can check out the official company website here.