Vodafone has signed an agreement with Spanish wine producer Bodegas Emilio Moro to develop what it describes as the “winery of the future”, using narrowband Internet of Things technology, Spanish press reported.
The UK-based telco said the main aim of the use of NB-IoT in the winery is to boost yields and minimize environmental impact on vineyards.
Vodafone and Bodegas Emilio Moro said they plan to test the carrier’s new ‘Sensing4Farming’ platform, developed in collaboration with Qampo and DigitalGlobe.
The new platform uses NB-IoT sensors combined with high-resolution, multi-spectral satellite images to monitor and report on ambient conditions such as moisture, salinity, water absorption and temperature.
“The internet of things, satellite data and artificial intelligence are already transforming industry and our cities. Now, they will start to transform the agriculture sector,” said Francisco Roman, president of Vodafone Spain.
In January 2017, Vodafone Spain launched its commercial NB-IoT in the country. The cities where this technology was initially available were Madrid and Valencia. Vodafone also offers this technology in other cities including Barcelona, Bilbao, Málaga and Seville.
The NB-IoT network was deployed within existing 800 MHz spectrum, with the telco only needing to make software updates in existing base stations in order to launch the technology. Vodafone said the use of licensed spectrum allows the telco to provide customers with the same levels of security as its LTE network and that the service will not be subject to potential disruption like alternative technologies utilizing unlicensed spectrum.
In June 2016, Vodafone completed a pre-standard NB-IoT customer trial with Spanish water company Aguas de Valencia. In October, the telco said completed what it claimed to be the world’s first test of a NB-IoT-connected product on a commercial network, using a parking sensor buried in a space within the Vodafone Plaza in Madrid.
This week, Vodafone Group confirmed plans to double the number of European sites in its narrowband Internet of Things network footprint by the end of 2019.
The U.K.-based telecom group said it has seen a growing demand from the enterprise segment for its NB-IoT offering. Vodafone said its NB-IoT network will be available in 10 European countries, including planned launches in the U.K., Romania and Hungary.
Outside of Europe, Vodafone also plans to expand its existing NB-IoT networks in other markets, including South Africa and Turkey.
Vodafone has already launched NB-IoT networks in the Czech Republic; Germany; Greece; Ireland; Italy; Australia; Netherlands; South Africa; Spain and Turkey. – Enterprise IoT Insights