In July 2016, the first fully connected city wide LoRaWAN™ Internet of Things (IoT) communications network in Australia was launched in the city of Townsville, North Queensland.
Townsville, which is part of the IBM® Smart City Initiative, now has a world class IoT network, with an area of coverage of approximately 1000 square kilometres. But what exactly is the IoT? How could a LoRaWAN™ IoT network benefit our industry, and how could it be utilised in our day to day operations? This paper attempts to explain the IoT using the Townsville LoRaWAN™ network as a working case study. It shows how different industries can and are benefiting from having access to an IoT network, and investigates how a LoRaWAN™ IoT network could benefit the hydrographic industry. The development of LoRa® technology brings a whole new spatial scale to IoT applications, and the overriding aim of this paper is to encourage and stimulate further ideas and discussions amongst hydrographers about how the hydrographic industry can fully leverage the potential opportunities that the IoT offers.