Pinacl Solutions



Three enablers for IoT

A topic that came to light in one of our recent blogs was the Internet of Things (IoT) and how it will impact our lives in 2017 and beyond. This blog delves deeper into what the Internet of Things is and looks at three key enablers for IoT solutions. 

The Internet of Things (IoT) consists of everyday objects – physical devices, vehicles, buildings, wearable technology etc. with embedded electronics, software, sensors and network connectivity, allowing them to collect, send and receive data. IoT is an enabler for change and can enable systems and devices to intelligently talk to each other in real time. The big enabler is the fact that the sensor devices are very low powered enabling them to be deployed anywhere and operate on batteries for several years.

IoT provides the opportunity to build intelligent systems, that can draw information from a range of disparate sources, providing the ability to offer a wider range of innovative operational modes, based on specific circumstances e.g. an IoT enabled street lighting system would be able to intelligently dim or switch on/off lighting based on localised environmental and presence information. Cities currently investing in replacing legacy streetlights with new low powered LED lamps should take that additional step and make these intelligent by IoT enabling them.

Dark Fibre 

Dark Fibre can be a cost effective solution for Cities looking to implement a resilient, scalable and future proof Smart City network infrastructure. Many Councils commit themselves to disparate service providers to deliver services into the City but fail to understand the high associated costs they face when they need to make any changes to their contracts.  So why is it that Councils renew these expensive contracts year on year? Is it because they are happy with the service they receive (possibly) or is it because they simply don’t know what other options are available?

Investing in a Dark Fibre network will ensure sufficient bandwidth is available now and in the foreseeable future to cater for all of their ICT requirements as well as Smart City solutions, including IoT. Also the Dark Fibre network infrastructure can be run as an open access network, attracting new businesses and inward investment into the area. Dark Fibre in simple terms is fibre optic cable that is placed underground in ducts (accommodating as many or as few fibre strands as required). It is called dark fibre as it only becomes lit once connected up to whatever kit is being used at the end. You no longer pay for the bandwidth you require, just the connection thereby ensuring total future proofing and peace of mind as the ongoing costs are known. 


LoRaWAN™ is a Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) specification intended for wireless battery operated sensors and devices in a regional, national or global network. LoRaWAN targets key requirements of the Internet of Things such as secure bi-directional communication, mobility and localisation services. The LoRaWAN specification provides seamless interoperability among smart sensors and devices without the need of complex local installations and gives back the freedom to the user, developer, businesses enabling the roll out of Internet of Things.

LoRaWAN provides long range, low speed communication between sensors which results in fewer base stations compared to celluar/mobile networks. LoRaWAN is an ideal solution that supports the fast, secure and cost effective deployment of Internet of Things smart applications across an area where large distances are involved, for example in Smart Cities. LoRaWAN ensures its security by implementing three different layers of security which are: 

• Unique Network key to ensure security on a network level
• Unique application key to ensure end to end security on an application level
• Device specific key

Pinacl will be deploying LoRaWAN network solutions across several UK Cities in 2017 as part of their Smart City proposition. 

Big Data 

The 'Internet of Things' (IoT) and 'big data' are two of the most-talked-about technology topics in recent years. IoT and big data are clearly connected as IoT sensors generate massive amounts of data, with the quantity of data generated by machines now overtaking all of the data ever created by man. The ability to store this wealth of data and then analyse it in real time helps to provide more informed decisions within Smart solutions. 

The Internet of Things will construct big data analysis in a parallel fashion, with big data providing high volume analysis to make sense of all the IoT data. Many companies are offering smart devices that are controlled by mobile application and are Internet enabled. For example, smart lights, smart fitness and tracking devices, smart thermostats, smart appliances, smart watches, and many innovative smart things, but all of these devices are managed by their own applications. 

The next stage of the IoT movement, and specifically within Smart Cities is to anonymise this data, collate and store it in a secure environment and provide open access for IoT application developers. This will stimulate innovation and creativity opening up new insights, enabling existing services to be delivered more efficiently and effectively and new services to be developed.  IoT and Big Data complement each other and when you sprinkle in data security, open access and rich data analytics, the art of the possible is born.

Why Choose Pinacl? 

With over 30 years working in the communications and fibre optic industry, Pinacl have the necessary in house knowledge, expertise, experience and capability to scope, design, install and importantly project manage your Smart City solution. 

From the Dark Fibre network infrastructure solution, ensuring it is tailored to meet your exact requirements. Combining this essential fibre based foundation with leading ICT, wireless and IoT technologies enables Pinacl to successfully deliver on your Smart City ambitions. Read about some of our Smart City/Campus projects by visiting our Case Studies page here>> 

Pinacl continue to be creative in an industry that is constantly changing, using our industry experience and product knowledge to drive innovation and craft pioneering technologies solutions. If you would like to know more about Pinacl please visit our Managed Network Infrastructure page here>>