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Smart City Sentinel

Sequans' Monarch 2 Platform Selected by Next Meters for New North American Smart Metering Solutions

By Alex Passett

Mirrors, tea leaves, tarot cards, bones and crystal balls. From ye olden times to present day, oracles have tapped into these to scry, i.e. to divine the future.

For us (in the realm of smart cities, where science serves as its own praxis of magic), engineers and developers are the practitioners of means through which people learn about what lies ahead. Air quality sensors, water detectors, and smart grids enable intelligent systems for monitoring quality-of-life metrics and bringing to life the types of full-scale energy-savings that keep the future looking cleaner and brighter.

So, at a time when global events regularly bring responsible energy supply and usage into newsfeeds, let’s talk about another reliable forecasting tool: smart metering.

Smart meters actively track and control businesses’ energy consumption levels. Berg Insight reported that the smart metering rate in North America reached upwards of 77% by the end of 2022. Additionally, recent data pulled by the U.S. Energy Information Administration suggests that at least 12 million commercial premises (and 90 million residential homes) in the country have already adopted a form of advanced metering infrastructure.

Enter Sequans and Next Meters. Sequans, with a portfolio of 5G/4G operator-certified chips and modules that support NB-IoT, LTE-M, LTE Cat 1, LTE Cat4/6 and 5G NR, is well-equipped to optimize cost-effective IoT applications. Next Meters, provider of ultrasonic meters and utility metering equipment, recognizes this. That’s why the company announced it will use Sequans’ Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform to provide the connectivity for its new North American utility metering solutions.

Connectivity is the name of the game in IoT, and Sequans’ Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform is a highly integrated multi-band solution that supports 5G IoT and delivers high-performance connectivity with ultra-low power consumption. This single-chip LTE-M/NB-IoT solution is specifically made for narrowband IoT applications, very much including smart meters.

"We selected Sequans Monarch 2 because of its demonstrated live network performance in coverage and power consumption, and especially because of its integrated eSIM with top Common Criteria EAL5+ security rating," said Adam Paul, Next Meters’ CEO. "The maturity and reliability of Sequans' technology is unsurpassed in the industry, and Monarch 2 is an ideal solution for our metering systems applications."

Louis Chuang, EVP of Sequans’ Massive IoT Division, sees a great future in this decision, as well.

“Next Meters is quickly becoming a leader in the utility metering market,” Chuang said, “and we are pleased to support their strategy with our Monarch 2 technology. Municipalities and utility providers will benefit greatly from the high quality and elegantly simple solutions.”

Sequans has popped up a fair amount recently. The company partnered with Thales to bring to market a new iSIM solution, and its team also joined forces with Eseye to deliver additional connectivity solutions for smart IoT deployments.

So while smart metering data may not be a traditional clairvoyant, it no less plays its part in how society smartly constructs sustainable systems for the future ahead.

Edited by Greg Tavarez
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