Renewable energy company SolarNow is backing the use of the Internet of Things (IoT) in Africa.
The company, which provides solar energy, appliances and financing solutions in East Africa, has turned to the IoT, while also integrating M2M cellular connectivity and AWS Cloud within its solutions, to provide more and better services to its customers.
While the time, costs and risks involved in setting up IoT deployments can appear to be a daunting, in its quest SolarNow turned to IoT M2M connectivity specialist Eseye. This enterprise leader offered a secure and reliable global cellular network data through the AnyNet Secure™ SIM, with seamless integration onto the AWS Cloud.
Jeremy Potgieter, SADC Regional Head, Eseye, says that SolarNow’s requirement was to enhance access to and use of device data: “They wanted better oversight of remote equipment and to be able to communicate with clients, for example when payments are due or if there is an issue with their device.”
The SIM’s enhanced features also enable SolarNow to remotely and securely activate, provision, authenticate and certify deployed devices over-the-air, in up to 190 countries. Integration with AWS Cloud Services, further simplifies project set up and deployment by reducing the need for investment in specialist in-house infrastructure and development resources. By adding AWS’ software tools and cloud, SolarNow establishes the means to simply and quickly analyse data and to scale instantly and securely, on demand.
Working with developers at SolarNow, Eseye also created software and supplied a reference design, which the company could simply copy onto the circuit board of the microprocessor that sits on a solar controller and manages SolarNow’s solutions.
Potgieter says that the capabilities provided to SolarNow have empowered the company to become completely self-reliant and secure in connecting and managing its growing product portfolio: “By taking a proven design and effectively copying it into its devices, has enabled SolarNow to move from a non-connected to a connected product offering, and to take full advantage of the capabilities of IoT. This not only provides the company with huge growth potential, but also adds a new level to its customer service offering.”