Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Twilio and T-Mobile power NB-IoT for Sensoneo waste management

Steve Rogerson
July 11, 2019

Californian cloud communications company Twilio is powering its first commercial NB-IoT deployment in the USA by Sensoneo, a smart waste management provider.
Leveraging ultrasonic, smart waste monitoring sensors, Slovakian firm Sensoneo helps cities and businesses make data-driven decisions and optimise waste collection. Sensoneo’s offering in the USA is enabled by Twilio's NB-IoT SIMs and the first generally available developer platform for NB-IoT in North America.
The combination of T-Mobile’s narrowband network with Twilio’s service management platform and APIs provides developers a fast, efficient and scalable way to connect a fleet of IoT devices. 
“Twilio is here to help developers imagine, build, deploy and manage the world’s largest fleets of cellular IoT devices,” said Evan Cummack, head of Twilio’s IoT business unit. “Our narrowband partnership with T-Mobile gives developers the quickest and most scalable way to deploy a fleet of inexpensive, low-power devices with exceptional nationwide coverage. Sensoneo is a great example of the unique opportunity that narrowband innovators have to disrupt established industries as the smart city vision comes to life.”
According to the World Bank, the human population creates more than two billion tons of municipal solid waste every year. Despite this scale, the process of managing this waste is antiquated, involving overflowing trash bins and dump trucks emitting CO2 as they wait in traffic.
Sensoneo’s smart waste management offering includes smart ultrasonic sensors embedded with Twilio NB-IoT SIMs that monitor waste levels, pick-up status and real-time temperature of bins. Powered by Twilio’s NB-IoT SIMs, T-Mobile’s NB-IoT network, GPS location and Bluetooth LE technology, these real-time data are instantly sent to Sensoneo software to optimise collection routes, pick up frequencies and vehicle loads.
In North America, Sensoneo uses Twilio’s NB-IoT offering that combines SIMs, API platform, software development kit and management console to connect and manage its smart sensor technology. Sensoneo’s offering is deployed across 35 countries and has reduced waste collection costs by 30% and lowered carbon emissions in active cities by up to 60%.
“Twilio was a clear choice for us,” said Martin Basila, founder and CEO of Sensoneo. “T-Mobile provides us a high-performance network complemented by Twilio’s superior platform and flexible console with very useful features such as the ability to manage SIMs and check sensor behaviour. Twilio is an ideal IoT provider for IoT solutions looking for reliable connectivity and quick scaling.”
Sylwia Kechiche, principal analyst for IoT at GSMA Intelligence, added: “With 1.9 billion connections projected by 2025, licensed cellular LPWA is set to become the predominant cellular connectivity. Smart city deployments are on the rise and multiple access technologies like Sensoneo will account for almost one billion IoT connections by 2025.”
T-Mobile was the first carrier to deploy NB-IoT in the USA, which launched nationwide in July 2018.
The lower throughput and low power NB-IoT cellular network is suitable for massive IoT devices such as Sensoneo’s sensors that only need to transmit small packets of data and need to conserve battery power for years. The network’s simplified radio protocol reduces the cost of cellular modem hardware and lowers on-going connectivity costs. With the power and cost efficiencies generated by NB-IoT, the market is ripe for new categories of lower cost, battery efficient internet-connected devices that don’t currently exist.
“Sensoneo is a perfect example of the promise of NB-IoT,” said Balaji Sridharan, vice president at T-Mobile IoT. “It's not just a network story, it's a problem-solving story. Waste management is a global issue that requires bold, innovative ideas and approaches. That our NB-IoT network, in partnership with Twilio, is an integral part of bringing a new, fresh approach to tackling such a large problem gives me and the whole T-Mobile IoT team a real jolt of energy.”