Beam Communications receives Telstra approval for 4G Internet of Things gateway

Beam Communications Holdings ASX BCC Telstra Corporation TLS IoT 4G
Telstra has approved Beam Communications’ MG400 industrial gateway for IoT and machine-to-machine applications throughout Australia.

A 4G router developed by Beam Communications Holdings (ASX: BCC) has been approved by Telstra Corporation (ASX: TLS) for Internet-of-Things (IoT) and machine-to-machine applications.

Approval of the MG400 LTE (Long Term Evolution) industrial gateway paves the way for the device to be sold Australia-wide ahead of the shutdown of Telstra’s 3G network in 2024.

It is the first Telstra-approved IoT gateway to be rated LTE Category 13 and certified with data speeds up to 30% faster than older generation 4G IoT devices.

The majority of 4G IoT gateways are rated LTE Category 6.

Beam said a large number of 3G gateways nation-wide will need to be upgraded over the next few years.

Telstra alone has 3.2 million IoT devices connected to its network, with 2,000 new devices added every day.

While it is not known how many of these devices are 3G, a September 2018 report by the Australian Computer Society estimated that around 30% of global IoT devices are 3G-reliant.

Beam non-executive director David Stewart said the proportion could be much higher.

“3G has been around for a long time and there are significantly more 3G than 4G devices out there – there are several hundred thousand 3G units used in semi-rural electricity meters alone,” he said.

“If you throw in vending machines, public transport systems, parking meters and other industrial applications that require connectivity, the number can exceed a million devices that will need to be upgraded.”

Robust design

The MG400 industrial gateway has been designed to withstand harsh environments.

It can control and monitor equipment via RS232 ports and has an integrated GPS module.

The device also features ignition sensing and can work with a range of input voltages, allowing it to be used in road vehicles, coastal maritime vessels and fixed industrial equipment such as digital signboards and vending machines.

Mr Stewart said the MG400’s approval followed a rigorous assessment process and is a “strong endorsement” of Beam’s technical expertise.

He said the company would now commence marketing the device to suitable users and distributors.

At midday, shares in Beam were up 22.50% to $0.245.