The Chatham Islands have joined some of the most technologically advanced places in the world thanks to the completion
of a brand new Internet of Things (IoT) network.
Progressively, all the world’s devices — such as household appliances, smart gadgets, vehicles, and agricultural
monitoring tools — are being connected to the internet.
This is the Internet of Things and it allows devices to “talk” and “learn” from each other so they can constantly
improve their performance.
An IoT network draws far less energy from devices connected to it than an internet network, allowing devices to transmit
data for years without needing new batteries.
The IoT network on the Chatham Islands has just been rolled out by Wireless Nation, alongside a big upgrade to the
islands’ satellite network which the residents rely on for internet.
Thanks to the upgrades, residents will have much faster and more reliable internet, as well as all the benefits of a
dedicated IoT network. For the people and businesses living on the islands, the upgrades are a game changer.
“With reliable high speed internet recognised as a basic human right given so much of our day-to-day lives relies on
access to data, the demand for the service is growing,” Iain Torrance, Chatham Island Trust Enterprise CEO, says.
“The Internet of Things solution being trialled on the Chathams has potential to deliver considerable benefits in a wide
range of environments.
“For example, we are piloting the vehicle tracking capabilities of the Wireless Nation’s GPS unit, the Fox Tracker, with
a view to using it to help with safety of our loan workers.”
Zariff Ali, Premium Service Manager at Wireless Nation, says the network will unlock a world of economic opportunities
and greater safety for the islanders.
“The IoT network deployment will change the way the locals live each day by enabling them to get feedback from the
natural resources they rely on as their main source of income,” Ali explains.
“Things like temperature sensors, humidity sensors, soil moisture probes, and rain gauges can become invaluable tools to
smart resource management and efficiency when they’re connected to the internet.
“Whether it’s for farming or fishing, the Chatham Islands have entered a new era of productivity with the IoT network.”
Alongside increased productivity, the IoT network comes with many benefits for the safety of people and assets.
Wireless Nation’s recently launched Fox Tracker is an inexpensive and small GPS device which can constantly transmit its
location for up to seven years on a single charge.
“It will enable residents to track their assets, such as boats, for greater peace of mind — both for the owner when the
boat is docked, and the owners’ loved ones when he or she is out at sea,” Ali says.
Wireless Nation Marketing Manager, Miro Sudzum, says the infrastructure upgrade on the Chatham Islands is all part of
the company’s continued commitment to rural New Zealand.
“The rollout on the Chatham Islands is a great demonstration of the work we can do to bring rural New Zealand into the
21st Century,” Sudzum says.
“We’re proud of the work we’ve done here and excited to roll out more IoT networks throughout mainland New Zealand.”