First in Norway with Narrowband IoT

Telenor and Q-Free will be first in Norway to use the new communication technology Narrow-band Internet of Things. A pilot for smart parking will be launched in the city of Trondheim. This is the first step towards a full-scale commercial network for the Internet of Things

Written: Oct 2016

The smart parking spaces belong to the Norwegian Public Roads Administration and are located at the park and ride carpark at Ranheim on the way into the city of Trondheim. The technology will also be tested at Q-free’s head office in Trondheim and at Telenor’s head office at Fornebu.

 A big step towards smart cities

“It is very exciting to see how traffic can be managed using good information about where there are available parking spaces, not to mention being free of all the unnecessary frustration and lost time used in searching for a parking space. We have great expectations of this pilot, which will bring us a big step closer to our vision of smart cities and the Internet of things,” says Ove Fredheim, Director for the Corporate Market in Telenor Norway.

The pilot commences in January 2017 and will test out how smart sensors can tell you where there is available parking, and in time make it possible to reserve a parking space on your mobile phone, obtain real-time information on when a space will be free and if necessary be guided to other parking spaces if it is full.

High security, low cost

“Q-Free is very excited to be part of this cooperation where Q-Free’s smart parking sensors will interact directly with Telenor’s base stations, meaning that the infrastructure needed for smart parking schemes can be significantly reduced,” says Anders Hagen, Research Director in Q-free.

The parking sensor detects occupancy on each parking space in a parking area, and the sensors are small and battery operated – ensuring high data accuracy, long lifetime and low installation cost.

“Through this pilot we can obtain evidence that the costs of installing smart parking can be considerably reduced and we will be a big step on the way to realising innovative, safe and environmentally-friendly solutions for the transport sector,” explains Hagen.

Huawei and u-blox are participating in the pilot, which will test the new communication technology Narrowband IoT.

“We are very pleased to collaborate with the integration of our SARA-N2 NB-IoT modules as part of this innovative deployment, with technology based on global standards. Our aim is to drive innovation in NB-IoT technology to serve the industry as a whole, Andreas Thiel, Executive Director, Cellular Products at u-blox said.”

Huawei has been one of the early advocates of this new technology standard internationally, which is characterised by secure and effective communication signals and reasonably priced sensors. Narrowband IoT is the first real step towards 5G, where almost everything can be connected.

Most things can be connected to the Internet

When reasonably priced energy-efficient sensors and new communication technology using the 4G network make secure communication possible from buildings, basements, under asphalt, on the top of mountains or where ever one finds the need, then most things are possible. We eagerly anticipate the results of this pilot, and the intention is to roll out a national network for the Internet of things,” says Fredheim.

Fredheim will make a presentation on the enormous opportunities the Internet of things and Narrowband IoT could give Norwegian society during the smart-city conference Nordic Edge Expo in Stavanger this week. He believes that the substantial advances in machine to machine (M2M) technology could contribute to greater efficiency in transport and logistics, with significant environmental gains.

The start of a national network

“Parking systems are the beginning, and the plan is to install sensors in the ground over New Year and use the period until March to gather in the results. We will then begin to plan the rollout of a national network,” adds Fredheim.

One of the biggest challenges related to a smart society and the connection of things to the Internet is the price and the network.

“The need for different infrastructure solutions suited to different technologies is one of the main challenges smart-city concepts struggle with today. This leads to very high investment and operating costs, as well as possibilities of frequency conflicts. This new technology means that we can finally take into use existing infrastructure and really get going,” concludes Hagen.

About Telenor Norway

Telenor Norway is the biggest supplier of mobile and network services in Norway. We deliver services within telephony, broadband and cable TV and cloud based smart solutions to consumer and business customers through our mobile and fixed network all over Norway. We also provide our services to other telecom operators. We have 4000 employees in over 30 workplaces all over Norway included Svalbard. Our main office is placed at Fornebu in Bærum.

About Q-Free

Q-Free is a leading global supplier of products and solutions within the global ITS market. The Q-Free Group has approximately 470 employees with offices in 20 countries and presence on all continents. The Q-Free head office is in Trondheim, Norway. Q-Free is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange under the ticker QFR

About u-blox

Swiss u-blox (SIX:UBXN) is a global leader in wireless and positioning semiconductors and modules for the automotive, industrial and consumer markets. u-blox solutions enable people, vehicles and machines to locate their exact position and communicate wirelessly over cellular and short range networks. With a broad portfolio of chips, modules and software solutions, u-blox is uniquely positioned to empower OEMs to develop innovative solutions for the Internet of Things, quickly and cost-effectively. With headquarters in Thalwil, Switzerland, u-blox is globally present with offices in Europe, Asia, and the USA. (www.u-blox.com)

About Huawei

Huawei is a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider. Driven by responsible operations, ongoing innovation, and open collaboration, we have established a competitive ICT portfolio of end-to-end solutions in telecom and enterprise networks, devices, and cloud computing. Our ICT solutions, products, and services have been deployed in more than 170 countries and regions, serving over one-third of the world’s population. With more than 170,000 employees globally, Huawei is committed to enabling the future information society, and building a Better Connected World. Huawei established a local office in 2007 and in 2010, we became one of the largest telecom solutions providers in Norway with over 160 employees at Fornebu, Oslo.