A Tasmanian internet pilot has entered its second phase of development.

LoRaTAS is a low power, low cost IoT network that enables data to be transmitted over long distances.

The network now holds six small antennae, which covers around 40% of Launceston, with plans to add an extra 15 antennae in the next month, as the network aims to go statewide in the near future.

ACS has recently partnered with start-up hub Enterprize Space, which is working with LoRaTAS, by relocating the Tasmanian branch into the incubator’s two locations in Hobart and Launceston.

Last month they hosted Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg and a delegation of government officials, to learn about the LoRa technology as part of their Australian ‘study tour’.

Also in attendance for the visit were: Anthony Wong, ACS President; Craig Clark, Chief Advisor to the State Minister for IT & Innovation; Gary McDarby, Chief Executive Office for Enterprize Space and Marc Portlock, ACS Tasmania State Manager.

“We see this as part of our export of ideas,” said Portlock. “It is an innovative platform for the state that will enable developers to come to Tasmania.”

Enterprize Space is working in collaboration with the University of Tasmania, Data61 and Definium Technologies to support the LoRaTAS project, which recently received a $100,000 grant from the State Government.

The low-bandwidth technology is of particular interest to the Sarawak government, which has publicly stated its aim to transition to a digital economy.

Like Tasmania in that they are both small, mountainous island areas, with a relatively large agriculture sector, the Sarawak government will carefully monitor the applications of IoT technology LoRaTAS enables, such as water management, smart farms and location services, as it looks to IoT technologies.

Sarawak has also recently committed to growing its start-up sector, investing in a ‘Digital Village’, which similarly to Enterprize Space provides local entrepreneurs and agencies an ecosystem to develop.