Pilot project with Henry of Pelham Family Estate Winery an important step forward in developing IoT smart technology solutions for agriculture
Bell has partnered with BeWhere Technologies and Huawei to implement an automated Internet of Things (IoT) solution for the Henry of Pelham vineyard to help improve planning and sustainability programs. The announcement took place this morning with the three partners, alongside Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, who highlighted the partnership ahead of her trade mission to China.
“Ontario’s technology sector is leading the way when it comes to developing solutions that can promote sustainability, grow our economy and create opportunities for our people,” said Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario. “This new IoT pilot shows the innovation that can be achieved when internationally recognized companies like Huawei partner with world-class Ontario businesses like Bell Mobility, BeWhere and Henry of Pelham and leverage the incredible talent of our province’s highly skilled workers.”
By using wireless environmental sensors connected to Bell’s LTE-M wireless network, the winery will be able to remotely monitor temperature and water levels, prevent vine disease, and ultimately improve the health of its plants, lowering operating costs and providing for years of maintenance-free data gathering.
“Unexpected adverse weather conditions can impact quality, yield and mortality of our crops,” said Matthew Speck, Owner/Viticulturist of Henry of Pelham Family Estate Winery. “Bell’s solution will increase the density of our environmental monitoring. We’ll be able to automatically act on temperature inversions by turning on fans when temperatures change, ensuring the health of our grapes and an optimal product for our customers. The solution is not only economical and scalable, it gives growers a good view of the vines’ temperature needs to improve quality and drive sustainability.”
“Bell’s leadership in LTE-M wireless technology and in the IoT space is a result of our continued investment and innovation in broadband communications networks and services,” said Claire Gillies, Vice President, Bell Mobility. “The LTE-M network enables smart sensors to collect and send data over a wider range and with much better battery life – a perfect fit for Henry of Pelham, wineries and growers across the country and many other industries.”
In June, Bell announced it will launch an LTE-M (Long Term Evolution, category M1) wireless network in 2018 to support the rapidly increasing use of IoT devices on low-power, wide-area networks (LPWANs) in Canada.
LTE-M improves the operating efficiency of IoT devices by enabling very low power consumption and better coverage in underground and other hard-to-reach locations. In partnership with Huawei, Bell has successfully demonstrated these benefits in its Mississauga wireless innovation lab and in network field trials.
“This project represents the best of what we can achieve when working with our long-term partner Bell and emerging Canadian IoT companies like BeWhere,” said Steve Lu, President of Huawei Canada. “We are excited about the future of IoT and the benefits that smart agriculture solutions will bring to farms and vineyards across the country.”
“Bell’s LTE-M network combined with BeWhere’s environmental sensors and cloud-based applications will provide Henry of Pelham with a perfect solution to help them do what they do best – produce fine wines,” said Owen Moore, CEO of BeWhere. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Bell, Huawei and Henry of Pelham on this project.”
LTE-M will support a broad range of large-scale IoT solutions, including smart city services, smart metering, home automation, weather and environmental monitoring, asset tracking, supply chain management, security monitoring, transportation and logistics, as well as personal wearables for healthcare and accessibility applications.