The LoRa Alliance®, the global association of companies backing the open LoRaWAN® standard for the IoT low-power wide-area networks (LPWANs), announced that LoRaWAN now seamlessly supports Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) from end-to-end. By expanding the breadth of device-to-application solutions with IPv6, LoRaWAN’s addressable IoT market is also broadened to include internet-based standards required in smart electricity metering and new applications in smart buildings, industries, logistics and homes.
The new IPv6 adaptation layer facilitates and accelerates development of secure and interoperable applications over LoRaWAN and builds on the alliance’s commitment to ease of use. IP-based solutions, commonly found in enterprise and industrial solutions, among many others, can now be transmitted over LoRaWAN, and easily integrated with cloud infrastructures. This allows developers to quickly enable internet-based applications, while significantly reducing time-to-market and total cost of ownership.
“As digitization across market sectors continues, integrating multiple technologies to achieve end-to-end solutions is critical,” said Donna Moore, CEO and chairwoman of the LoRa Alliance. “At the same time, companies are requiring solutions that provide increased interoperability and adhere to standards. Now that LoRaWAN readily integrates with any IP application, end users have both. IPv6 is a core technology underpinning IoT, so enabling IPv6 over LoRaWAN opens a huge number of new markets and a much larger addressable application space to LoRaWAN. Developers and end users with IPv6 devices recognize the benefits of digital transformation and IoT, and already create solutions that can improve lives and the environment, as well as drive new revenue streams. By supporting IPv6, they now have a simple path to use LoRaWAN and benefit from the technology’s proven advantages. With this development, LoRaWAN once again positions itself a market leader at the forefront of IoT.”
The successful development of IPv6 over LoRaWAN is credited to the active collaboration of LoRa Alliance members in the Internet Engineering Task Force to specify the Static Context Header Compression (SCHC) and fragmentation techniques, which makes transport of the IP packets over LoRaWAN very efficient. The LoRa Alliance IPv6 over LoRaWAN Task Force then took the SCHC specification (RFC 90111) and integrated it into the body of the LoRaWAN standard. LoRa Alliance member company, Acklio, made significant contributions to enable IPv6 over LoRaWAN and was integral to the development of the SCHC technology for LoRaWAN.
Moore continued, “I want to thank Acklio on behalf of the LoRa Alliance for its support and contributions to this effort, and its efforts to drive the LoRaWAN standard forward.”
"Acklio, a pioneer of SCHC technology, is proud to contribute to this new milestone that makes LoRaWAN natively compatible with internet technologies,” said Alexander Pelov, CEO of Acklio. “The LoRa Alliance ecosystem has mobilized for the specification and adoption of this key feature in record time. SCHC solutions that are compliant with this new specification are now commercially available from partners across the IoT value chain to deploy IPv6 over LoRaWAN solutions worldwide."
The first application to leverage SCHC for IPv6 over LoRaWAN is DLMS/COSEM for smart metering. It was developed as part of the liaison between LoRa Alliance and DLMS User Association to address electric utilities requirement for the use of IP-based standards. There are many additional applications for IPv6 over LoRaWAN, such as monitoring internet networking equipment, reading RFID labels and IP-based smart home applications, among others.