Altice, an international telecom and media group, its subsidiary SFR, the second-largest French global telecommunications operator, and SIGFOX, the low power wide area network (LPWAN) connectivity solution for the Internet of Things (IoT), have formed a strategic partnership.
Altice and SFR will integrate SIGFOX connectivity into the group’s service offering in France and internationally. Altice customers and divisions in France and internationally will benefit from SIGFOX connectivity, which uses unlicensed spectrum and complements the group’s existing cellular IoT offer.
This strategic partnership launches a collaboration of three players that share the same ambitions, according to SIGFOX. These are: to offer complementary connectivity solutions that democratise the IoT in all sectors of the economy and expand the offer of connected solutions for businesses and consumers.
With its focus on investing in growth, Altice is building an international group based on the convergence of mobile and fixed high-speed networks with media, content and platform services in Western Europe (comprising France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Portugal and Switzerland), the United States, Israel, and the Overseas Territories (currently comprising the French Caribbean, the Indian Ocean regions and the Dominican Republic).
SIGFOX, whose network is deployed in 14 countries and already registers more than 7 million devices, offers an energy-efficient, two-way global communication solution for the millions of sensors waiting to be connected.
“We are convinced that the IoT market is an opportunity to seize now, with a global vision,” said Michel Combes, COO of Altice, chairman and CEO of SFR. “We are talking about billions of connections. We share the same entrepreneurial vision with SIGFOX and the will to conquer new markets. The availability of the SIGFOX network allows us to bring new Internet of Things solutions to our B2B clients.”
“SIGFOX has always been convinced that the IoT requires a new type of connectivity solution, and that our offer would not compete with services offered by cellular operators,” said Ludovic Le Moan, CEO of SIGFOX. “We are excited and proud to join Altice and its founder Patrick Drahi, to share this vision, and especially to realize the ambition to make the IoT a major activity for the development of both companies.”
In France, where the network already covers 92% of the population, this partnership will allow the customers of SFR, the first operator to launch 4G mobile telecom technology in France and an expert in M2M solutions, to benefit from the best of the two offers: high bandwidth and low bandwidth. SFR clients will use SIGFOX connectivity as a complement to existing connectivity solutions, such as 4G or Wi-Fi.
In 2016, SIGFOX said it plans to cover more than 30 countries with its network. The partnership with Altice will extend in all territories where the group is present, including Portugal with Portugal Telecom, the US and Israel.