Archived — Project Highlights

The Wireless Modem - Keeping Us Connected

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) professionals, police officers and firefighters are just three of the mobile workforces that need instant access to large volumes of data-access that, for these workers, means faster response times and often increased personal safety. So how do you get information to employees out in the field? Many organizations are relying on the unique wide area wireless data modem technology and enabling software developed by award-winning Sierra Wireless Inc.

The Richmond, BC-based company offers customers this ability through its range of wireless modems for a variety of consumer, enterprise, public safety, field service, and industrial applications.

In order for a device to connect to the internet, it must contain a modem. Once connected to the internet, the modem serves as a portal that allows users to browse the Web, or to connect to home offices or corporate networks. The modem has experienced dramatic change since its first inception, and new wireless technologies allow modems connected to cellular data networks to offer fast connections from virtually anywhere. Luckily for Canadians, Sierra Wireless is at the forefront of this change.

Sierra Wireless provides wireless modem solutions for people with a wide range of needs. The company's products are used in three separate markets: mobile computing, rugged mobile, and machine-to-machine, all of which require access from locations where a wired connection is impossible or impractical.

Sierra Wireless's wireless modem solutions are used to allow businesses, government organizations, and consumers to access the internet, email, and databases, from a variety of locations, many of which are quite different from a typical office. Customers include public safety workers, insurance adjusters, health care professionals, and oil and gas personnel who need to stay connected in a wide variety of situations. In addition, Sierra Wireless's machine-to-machine (M2M) products enable applications like remote monitoring of oil and gas pipelines, security systems with live video feeds, and financial transactions from portable vending or cash machines.

In 2001, Technology Partnerships Canada (TPC) made a $9.9-million investment in Sierra Wireless's 3G wireless research and development program, a project that totalled $40 million. As a result of this investment, Sierra Wireless further developed the wireless technology in its AirCard™ PC Cards, and is now a significant supplier of a broad portfolio of modems for mobile broadband networks worldwide.

Sierra Wireless is now one of Canada's top technology companies, with revenue exceeding $400 million dollars in 2007. Sierra Wireless also contributed significantly to the development of a wireless cluster in Vancouver.

TPC's contribution has helped Sierra Wireless create wireless modem solutions that are used by people around the world.

For more information, visit Sierra Wireless's website at: www.sierrawireless.com.

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