Target connectivity first, then 4IR ambition - Vodacom

Africa's 4IR
priorities

Vodacom exec stresses
need for connectivity.


Wednesday, Nov 20th

Nokia pilots Smart Agriculture-as-a-Service in Algeria

Nokia pilots Smart Agriculture-as-a-Service in Algeria

Company rolls out Worldwide IOT Networking Grid (WING).

Via its Worldwide IOT Network Grid (WING), Nokia is piloting a smart agri-tech programme to equip farmers with credible, practical data and help them ensure better yields

The Nokia WING service utilises IOT to monitor inputs that affect crops, including water, humidity, weather and soil elements. This information is then handed over to farmers to help them plan accordingly.

It was recently piloted in Algeria to help local framers reduce their irrigation costs. According to the organisers, after one month farmers were able to reduce water consumption by 40% on a single irrigation line.

"We focus on smart agriculture and IOT capabilities in farming," said Ankur Bhan, founder and head of WING. "We are currently working together with Djezzy Telecom and farmers in Algeria on smart agriculture as a service. We are helping farmers improve their crop yield and reduce their water and irrigation consumption significantly."

However, cost is always a consideration, as Bhan acknowledges, and can be a barrier to deployment.

"We have been working on this by deploying global economies of scale. We replicate these solutions in various parts of the world like South America and Asia and helps bring the cost down."

"Some of the hardware can be shared among farmers, such as weather sensors, insect traps, HD cameras. That's where the role of operators is important. They also have much of the network infrastructure," he added.

Nokia WING is currently providing hardware to the operators and farmers on a subscription base model to address affordability.

Bhan said that the technology can apply to more crops in different regions in Africa and other parts of the world.

ALSO ON ITWEB AFRICA