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Wireless IoT Forum Aims to Create Wide Area Wireless Standards

The rise of Internet-connected devices – from cars and TVs to refrigerators, HVAC systems and lighting – has transformed the machine-to-machine world into the Internet of Things (IoT). And the IoT is seen as driving a new phase of high-tech innovation and growth among a wide range of companies and economic sectors, including Internet technology and telecommunications providers.

The need to support and promote the deployment of the worldwide Internet of Things has given rise to a new organization announced March 31. The Wireless IoT Forum aims to drive widespread adoption of wireless wide-area networking (WAN) technologies in both licensed and unlicensed spectrum."

The Wireless IoT Forum

The forum plans to announce founding members at the M2M World Congress scheduled to take place in London April 28. Will Franks has been named Wireless IoT Forum's chairman and William Webb CEO. Franks founded and served as CTO of Ubiquisys, a small-cell vendor acquired by Cisco for $310 million. Webb is president of the Institution of Engineering and Technology and has held other senior positions with British regulator Ofcom.

The Wireless IoT Forum expects to engage a wide range of stakeholders to build an ecosystem and to promote the benefits of the technology. Stakeholders include fixed and wireless network operators; infrastructure providers; app developers in utilities, government and specialist SMEs; semiconductor vendors; radio technology providers; module developers; systems integrators and vertical end-users.

"The wireless Internet of Things is bringing connectivity and control to an order of magnitude more devices, however there is a very real risk of fragmented standards and technologies holding back the development of the market," Webb was quoted in a press release. Citing what occurred in the cellular market, Webb said IoT success will depend on open standards, which he said the forum would work to make reality.

"Successful wireless technologies have always been founded on interoperability, open standards, and a focus on the demands of end-users," Franks added. "The Forum is committed to securing these conditions and working with all major stakeholders to ensure successful and timely deployment of the Internet of Things worldwide.

Industry players who will be joining the forum, he said have "the vision to recognize the need to collaborate to create robust technology platforms while competing to create dynamic markets."

Wireless IoT Forum has scheduled its inaugural plenary session on April 29. In the run-up, the forum is actively recruiting members.

Chuck Harris leads the Alliance Development Team for NetAmerica Allaince whose mission it is to grow NetAmerica's 4G LTE footprint by working with wireless license holders across the U.S. interested in joining the NetAmerica Alliance to provide 4G LTE service to citizens in rural America.