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Eleven-x, SaskTel smart city tech improves efficiency

Global smart-city solutions supplier eleven-x is extending its partnership with SaskTel to enable...

eleven-x SaskTel partnership

Eleven-x and SaskTel partner on smart city technology for cities and towns (Courtesy eleven-x)

Global smart-city solutions supplier eleven-x is extending its partnership with SaskTel to enable smart city initiatives across the province.

Last year, eleven-x provided support in deploying LoRaWAN networks, which are low-power and wide-area, as well as being crucial in the development of smart city tech. They are used to wirelessly connect battery-operated devices to the internet. The networks have up to 30 miles of range in rural areas and can penetrate dense urban environments.

Currently, eleven-x offers indoor air quality monitoring, real-time water management, the XiU interface platform which offers to make any installed but unconnected device ‘smart’ via LoRaWAN, and its two largest offerings smart parking and water metering.

The battery life for the parking interface is 10 years, while the water metering can last up to 20 years.

The smart parking, known as the SPS-X smart parking sensor, aims to reduce the 30 per cent of vehicle-related GHG emissions that come from parking alone, as well as traffic accidents and fare enforcement.

An efficiency gain for cities and towns

“We’re trying to help cities generate more revenues from their parking, reduce greenhouse gases, improve traffic for everyone visiting the city,” said Dan Mathers, the CEO and co-founder of eleven-x. “If you think about it, that’s the first impression you get in the city is ‘Oh, man, parking sucks a lot.’ ”

eleven-x’s water metering connects to the cloud in real-time instead of having people manually visit each house to monitor water meters each month. Once again, the idea is to create efficiencies, be more accurate and reduce GHG emissions by removing the need to drive to each meter.

Mathers says these networks provide a financial ROI as well as a social ROI thanks to their automated processes, longer battery lives, and reduction in GHG emissions.

Some of the Smart City solutions nearing implementation in Saskatchewan include waste management, soil monitoring, asset tracking, people counting, environmental monitoring, AMI water metering and indoor air quality monitoring. Cities currently participating in solution pilots include Regina, Saskatoon, Meadow Lake, Melfort and Moose Jaw.

Another aspect of the networks is the ability to bring this efficiency to smaller cities like Melfort, which is 172 km northeast of Saskatoon and has a population of just under 6,000 people.

“It’s all about the communities and that’s really the basis of the partnership with SaskTel here,” said Mathers. “How many communities can we get out and help with this technology?”

In terms of any potential security issues, Mathers said the networks use the same encryption technology as cellular network chips.

“We’re pleased to continue our relationship with eleven-x as we work together to provide a diverse range of next-generation solutions while optimizing innovative technology and delivering an exceptional quality of service and experience to our customers,” said Doug Burnett, president and CEO of SaskTel said in a statement on the partnership.

SaskTel is a tech provider

SaskTel is an information and communications tech provider with $1.3 billion in annual revenue and approximately 1.4 million customer connections including 639,000 wireless accesses, 289,000 wireline network accesses, 289,000 internet accesses, 114,000 maxTV subscribers and 81,000 security monitoring customers.

Founded in 2014, eleven-x is based in Waterloo, Ontario and claims to be the first and only network operator with a purpose-built ‘Internet of Things’ network available for public access. Using LoRaWAN, the company says it has built the first smart city water meter application, water monitoring pilot, waste application, and parking application in North America.

It was also placed in the Globe and Mail’s 2020 list of Canada’s top-growing companies.

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