IBM offers weather alert technology for underserved populations

IBM mesh Network alerts

IBM and its business The Weather Company introduced new Mesh Network Alerts technology, designed to notify potential severe weather events or disasters.

The enterprise IT vendor said this technology provides a mobile method of communicating with underserved populations in developing countries to notify of potential severe weather events or disasters — even in areas with limited Internet connection, or cellular networks are disrupted due to an outage.

Developed by IBM researchers, the mesh technology will be available soon via The Weather Channel app in emerging markets.

The app will use peer-to-peer connections within the mesh network to send alerts to individuals via their smartphone devices.

The mesh network technology links other nearby phones to extend the signal to help keep citizens connected and informed, and in the most severe conditions, might even help save a life.

Mesh Network Alerts technology is particularly crucial in emerging markets, as well as in developed countries where cellular networks are congested, connectivity is intermittent and data access is often limited.

As a result, the ability to alert and inform people during emergency situations is unreliable, which can have dire consequences.

“The combination of the innovative Mesh Network Alerts and global reach of The Weather Channel mobile app can help deliver a new level of emergency awareness to underserved populations,” said Bijan Davari, IBM Fellow and vice president, next generation computing systems and technology, IBM Research. ”

We’re proud to be able to quickly offer a critical and potentially lifesaving capability to hundreds of millions of people around the world.”

The new Mesh Network Alerts will be available first as an update coming soon to The Weather Channel App for Android devices in emerging markets across Asia, Latin America and Africa.

This app, available now in the Google Play Store, was researched, designed and recently launched specifically for emerging markets. It’s optimized for low bandwidth environments, but offers the same high-quality user experience and needed weather information, maps and alerts from The Weather Channel.

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