Are IoT Companies Full of ____it?


Earlier today, we received notice of a press release that Sigfox had just finished providing its 8th country with full coverage. And the tone of it reminded me of the Verizon announcements about the number of PoPs covered with LTE. “Can you hear me now?”

Now normally, one would think that announcement would be a huge accomplishment and say “kudos to you Sigfox. Job well done.” But Sigfox has been doing a lot of hype. And not all of the hype equals the reality of the low power wide area market today.

So I re-read the email we receieved, and wouldn’t you know it, I didn’t have to look too hard to see where they may have hyped things. Team Sigfox covered Luxembourg.

With a population of 543,000 and covering 998 square miles, Luxembourg is a quarter the population and 13.5% the size of the San Antonio metropolitan statistical area – or what I like to call home.

So congratulations Sigfox, you lit up an area smaller than the 7th largest city in the U.S. by population.

Now I get it, tech companies need to provide a fair amount of hype in order to appease investors. But one of the challenges to what is going on in IoT right now is overstatement by under-performing organizations.  

Image via Shutterstock

I like what you’re trying to accomplish with the network, Sigfox. Please don’t become one of the spin-machines that over-promise and under-deliver. If you keep messaging in context we won’t have to look for our own apples to apples comparisons.

Because right now I could state that “Sigfox deployments to date almost equal that of the land mass equal to one US State.” And I would be factually correct. But that too is out of context. And while it is true, comparing the area of Alaska to the square miles covered by Sigfox would be wrong.

So keep building, but don’t over-hype. And you’ll get the press and attention you’ve earned.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

Founding Analyst and Chief Technology Evangelist

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