French-Japanese Alliance Seeks to Drive Energy-Harvesting-Powered IoT Devices
Sigfox and Alps Alpine have signed a Global Alliance Partnership Agreement. The agreement is the first of its kind for Sigfox, allowing it to work closely with Alps Alpine to drive forward technical innovation and expand their combined reach. A key goal of the new alliance is encouraging joint investment in innovation, including the development of small, low-cost Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices and energy harvesting technologies.
Alps Alpine is one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of components including sensors, HMI (human-machine interfaces), switches and connectivity devices to the automotive, industrial and smartphone industries. The Alliance combines Sigfox’s 0G network, which uses very little energy to connect billions of devices, with Alps Alpine’s mass production capabilities. This opens up huge possibilities to roll out connected devices to the mass market, enabling businesses to accelerate their digital transformation, develop new services and create value for the market.
The Alliance will speed up the adoption of connected devices by:
- Providing Alps Alpine with early access to Sigfox’s R&D projects, allowing them to co-develop services in the future;
- Encouraging joint investment in innovation, including the development of small, low-cost devices and energy harvesting technologies;
- Developing a joint go-to-market strategy.
The two companies have already agreed on the common development of Sigfox’s Bubble Beacon/Tag for luggage and asset tracking. Bubbles are small devices that can be placed anywhere in a matter of seconds. These low-cost, low-energy Bubbles make it easy to accurately track the location of anything from luggage to pallets.
"We're seeing a significant acceleration in demand for connected objects and industrial scale deployments of IoT solutions. Having a global, simple, low-cost, low-power connectivity solution is a critical success factor, and exactly the challenge that Sigfox is addressing right now. We’re delighted to announce our partnership with Alps Alpine, which is fast-tracking joint development and manufacturing of large volumes of high-quality connected objects. This partnership has unlocked innovation, scale, quality and cost potential that is enabling us to deliver digital and economic benefits for our clients that were once unattainable. By combining resources, we are realizing the future of a mass, mainstream IoT, while pushing the boundaries of what’s possible” explains Glen Robinson, Chief Business Development Officer at Sigfox.
Sigfox and Alps Alpine have already proved the value of their collaboration. Since 2017, they have partnered on common customer projects and earlier this year they launched their innovative tracking solution for Deutsche Post DHL Group. It will see 250,000 roll cages fitted with smart trackers to provide accurate information about their location and movements.
“Sigfox has already proven to be a trusted partner in delivering accurate, reliable solutions. We welcome moving onto the next stage, working together to develop more professional, industrial solutions, bringing the value of the IoT to more markets. By combining our mass production and engineering capabilities with Sigfox’s low-powered network, there is no limit to what we can achieve together,” says Yasuo Sasao, Chief Technology Officer at Alps Alpine.