News & Views

Wi-SUN Alliance grows
Driving the proliferation of interoperable wireless solutions for use in smart cities and other IoT applications, the Win-SUN Alliance (www.wi-sun.org) announces that Hexing, one of China’s largest smart metering companies, has become a new Promoter member, the highest level of Wi-SUN membership.   As such, a Hexing representative has joined the Wi-SUN Board of Directors alongside world-leading semiconductor companies Arm and Silicon Labs – who became members last year – and existing Promoter members, Cisco, Itron, Landis + Gyr, NICT, OMRON, Renesas, Toshiba and Trilliant.

“Despite the challenges of 2020, we enter a new year with our global ecosystem continuing to expand into almost every part of the world as the demand for IIoT, smart utility and smart city applications – and Wi-SUN certified products – grows,” says Phil Beecher, President and CEO, Wi-SUN Alliance.  “We are delighted to welcome Hexing, our latest Promoter member, to Wi-SUN Alliance, and remain optimistic for another strong year as we engage on the next phase of our development as a community.”

Over the last 12 months, the number of Wi-SUN certified products have increased and there are more than 200 now available.  This includes 43 Wi-SUN FAN (Field Area Networks) certified products from 18 members, including Cisco, Hexing, Itron, Landis + Gyr and Renesas.   Introduced in 2018, the Wi-SUN FAN Certification Program (
https://wi-sun.org/certification-3/) is the only program of its kind to certify devices for use by utilities and service providers and for local authorities and municipalities designing and deploying smart cities.

Wi-SUN has launched the next phase of its specification program with Wi-SUN FAN 1.1, confident that the demand for interoperable products will continue to grow this year as more IoT applications and services are rolled out across global markets, including North America and South America.

Wi-SUN FAN 1.1 will deliver higher data rates with lower latency, and support for battery-powered devices for applications like gas and water metering, environmental monitoring, traffic sensing, parking management and weather sensors.  This next evolution of the program will help extend the range of applications suited to Wi-SUN products, including the integration of smart metering with renewables like solar and wind power where network stability and grid control is critical.

More recently, the City of London has completed a three-year project to deploy a City-wide street lighting network supported by Wi-SUN FAN technology.  The City partnered with Wi-SUN member Itron, smart city solutions company, Urban Control, and exterior lighting specialists, DW Windsor, to meet requirements to deliver good in-field performance based on open standards communications technology.  

“The smart lighting project had to overcome a number of communications challenges unique within an historical area such as the City of London.  Narrow streets and high-rise buildings create urban canyons, which more traditional communications technology like cellular systems struggle to cope with,” explains Giles Radford, Head of Highway Construction and Infrastructure.  

“Wi-SUN FAN was very impressive as it allowed us to penetrate even the narrowest of streets in and around steel and glass structures.  We were very impressed with the self-healing functionality of the mesh network – you don’t have to worry about connectivity, it just does the work for you.”

For more information see www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nQDSqx3S3w

The Wi-SUN Alliance has seen a 20% growth in membership and now has 300 member companies in 46 countries, and is seeing growing interest from organizations across Europe, Middle East and Africa, as well as new members from the Americas, APAC, South Asia and Japan.  This is being driven by the increased demand for open standards-based interoperable products to support large-scale industrial IoT, smart utility and smart city applications, including connected street lighting and smart metering.