If words like 'Vehicular Networks' and 'Internet-of-Moving-Things' intrigue you, then this article will give you some insights into what's buzzing in the IoT/M2M world. The 'Vehicular Network' is a Wi-Fi based network that has vehicles connecting to each other while providing Wi-Fi Hotspot service to all other devices within the coverage range. The largest provider of Vehicular Networks, Veniam, a Silicon Valley company which is a spin-off from Portugal's University of Porto, currently has more than 600 connected vehicles operating in Porto, Portugal. According to Veniam, 73% of bus drivers with mobile devices in the city of Porto are using Veniam's free Wi-Fi with about 3 terabytes of data being transmitted monthly on the network. Veniam says that the vehicular network is offloading 50% of traffic from cellular networks in the busiest areas of the city and more than 60,000 users are using its free Internet service monthly.
Veniam which recently announced a $4.9 million Series A funding led by True Ventures will soon be deploying these vehicular networks across US cities. The expansion will see Veniam vehicular networks or the 'Internet-of-Moving-Things' linking up devices, vehicles and buildings, enabling the 'Internet-of-Everything'(IoE). Veniam's technology is also deployed in controlled spaces, like ports and container terminals, to deliver improved wireless coverage, increased security, two-way communication and new real–time data.
The vehicular network or Internet-of-Moving-Things enables the realization of a truly smart city as places without cellular and fiber can still have internet coverage via Wi-Fi services provided by the 'moving things' comprising public buses and taxis fitted with Wi-Fi routers. These routers not only provide connectivity to other devices on board but will also act as M2M nodes along with other end nodes or sensors installed across the city for example on trash bins and lamp posts, collecting information that can be used by decision makers to enhance transportation services, and to manage various other aspects of running smart cities. Bus suspension sensors that detect a pothole and waste container sensors that can detect if the bins are full are examples of end nodes that provide information on the need for road repairs and garbage collection, respectively. According to Veniam, as in any M2M infrastructure, its hardware, software and cloud solutions are pulled together to provide a platform that is expected to see the roll out of more applications and products for end users based on information collected and transmitted via the Wi-Fi networks.