TPG Is Getting Into ‘Smart Water’ With Yarra Valley Project

TPG Is Getting Into ‘Smart Water’ With Yarra Valley Project
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TPG Telecom is set to make the water in the Yarra Valley smarter.

No, seriously. TPG has won a contract to introduce smart technology throughout the Yarra Valley water and sewerage system, operated by the Yarra Valley Water company. The Yarra Valley Water company services the most land out of all of Victoria’s water providers.

TPG isn’t going to be teaching the water any new tricks, but the Yarra Valley water systems that service 4,000 square kilometres in Victoria, as far north as Wallan and out to Warburton in the east of the state, will have up to 1 million Internet of Things (IoT) devices rolled out.

Yarra Valley Water, mind you, is also made up of over 20,000 kilometres of water and sewerage mains. Like all major sewerage and water systems in the world, it’s extensive and essential to our way of life.

Which is where TPG Telecom comes into the picture with its IoT devices. IoT isn’t a tough concept to get your head around, it basically boils down to technology being able to talk to one another through smart communication, kind of how in smart homes you can turn a TV, speaker or even a kettle on with “Hey Google!”. IoT essentially describes a network of devices that can speak to each other.

Within the Yarra Valley Water system, this means that the IoT devices will provide data to company technicians, including flow, pressure and water quality. Being able to track these stats should be able to increase the reliability of services, responsiveness and reduce waste water. With an IoT network, Yarra Valley Water will be able to respond in near real-time to emerging issues across the network, like major breaks, spills and leaks.

“Our device management platform ensures the millions of data-points across Yarra Valley Water’s IoT network are integrated, supported and streamlined in a way that provides meaningful insights for the business, its customers and the environment at large,” says Chris Russo, the general manager of customer sales and strategy at TPG.

“We are thrilled to bring our IoT experience, commitment and network knowledge to this large-scale project.”

TPG Telecom’s management of the Yarra Valley Water IoT network will include Nokia’s Impact device management platform, which allows companies to manage networks of devices on a large scale. Additionally, digital water meters, water pressure sensors and sewer level sensors will be rolled out across the Yarra Valley Water network by TPG.

IoT networks are one of the next big steps in the management of large-scale networks.

Last year, Telstra was awarded a similar contract to roll out IoT management systems across the Yarra Valley water system. KPMG also has a contract with Yarra Valley Water to provide asset intelligence solutions.

“The Telstra contract relates to the provision of network communication services,” clarified Raghu Bharadwaj, the head of ICT strategy at Yarra Valley Water. “The TPG/Vodafone contract, which is a separate contract, relates to the management of IoT devices in the field.”

The TPG deal will last for 15 years and the IoT network will be rolled out across the next five to 10 years.