As a research area, wireless sensor networks have been investigated for number of years, primarily for military purposes. However, there is increasing interest in developing such technology for civilian and commercial applications. There are many barriers to the widespread deployment of sensor networks, including:
These difficulties aside, there is sufficient momentum in the research and development community to suggest that sensor networks are likely to become commonplace in the future. Given the use of wireless technologies to network these devices, we commissioned this study to answer the following questions:
Ofcom's technical research programme enables us to keep up to date with technologies and trends, so that we can be in the best possible position to execute our regulatory duties. We do not conduct research in-house but make use of external resources, such as private commercial organisations, university departments and government funded research institutions. These reports present the findings of technical work conducted on Ofcom’s behalf. The opinions and conclusions stated within these reports are those of the organisations who conducted the research and may not reflect the view of Ofcom or imply any future policy work in related areas.