Telenor becomes a member of the FAKTRY with new IoT lab

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Telenor is opening a research lab in Norway aimed at helping start-ups, developers and students build and test new solutions for the Internet of Things.

The IoT ProtoLab will open early next year in FAKTRY, a start-up community for hardware companies at Sluppen in Trondheim. FAKTRY will open in November.

The operator is working with wireless broadband and R&D company Wireless Trondheim on the lab, which will focus on incubating Low Power Wide Area technologies and applications.

In a statement, the companies said the lab would also enable the collaboration between companies at IoT Protolab and Telenor's own research into artificial intelligence and machine learning with the Norwegian technology university NTNU.

Telenor will provide mentorship, support internships and also set up relationships with its partners to help in student projects and hackathons.

Sigve Brekke, President & CEO of Telenor Group, said: "The people and companies shaping tomorrow's society are the ones that are able to utilise and apply data in new ways. Telenor is committed to help build these capabilities in Norway. The IoT ProtoLab will be a place for students, entrepreneurs and startups to experiment and prototype solutions using next-generation IoT technologies." 

Thomas Ulleberg, Manager of Wireless Trondheim, added: "Our mission at Wireless Trondheim is to enable students, entrepreneurs and start-ups to experiment and prototype solutions using next-generation IoT technologies. By coupling our specialist competence with companies like Telenor, we can create real impact and help make new smart products and services for the future."

Earlier this year, the operator launched Telenor Start IoT, a LoRa-based network and back-end system aimed at helping developers produce new kinds of services. Start-ups and students also have the opportunity to get their hands on free development kits for use over a five year period.

Telenor is far from the only operator to set up space to help start-ups. Last week, Deutsche Telekom said it would launch a new project aimed at helping smaller companies innovate in the telecoms infrastructure space.

Orange's Fab academy gives dedicated space for French start-ups.