Wireless carrier Verizon has announced a partnership with Honeywell that will integrate Verizon’s Managed Connectivity LTE with Honeywell Internet of Things (IoT) sensors to create a smarter energy grid.

The project’s aim is to “speed up and simplify” the rollout of sensors, controllers, and other internet-connected hardware on electrical grids.

SEE: 5G: What it means for IoT (ZDNet/TechRepublic special feature) | Download the free PDF version (TechRepublic)

Smart energy grids have been in development and can improve energy use, reduce outages, optimize energy expenditure, and help utility companies respond to usage spikes.

Verizon and Honeywell are planning to include a number of elements in their new products that will make smart grid management easier, such as device ID and security features, remote monitoring and management, real-time diagnostics, and others.

Jay Olearain, enterprise products and IoT director at Verizon, said “working with Honeywell on these next-generation solutions will enable the reliability and scalability of the communications needed to deliver smart metering, manage distributed energy resources, conserve water, and make the digital world work better for utilities and consumers.”

Honeywell is no stranger to smart grid technology, and has had its own smart grid division for more than 30 years. Pairing its existing smart grid tech with cellular network connectivity will ideally enable Honeyewell’s sensors to operate in edge computing environments that it wasn’t able to before.

5G and the smart grid

While this current iteration of its smart grid partnership is designed around LTE networks, Honeywell and Verizon are also looking at 5G as part of their partnership.

The two companies are exploring “how 5G can transform the utility industry through higher bandwidth, faster speeds and low latency, enabling advanced industrial automation and control solutions along with real-time analytics,” Verizon said.

TechRepublic has previously covered industries that will be disrupted by 5G wireless. industries that will be disrupted by 5G wireless technology, and the energy sector is an the energy sector is an often-discussed member of that group.

Verizon and Honeywell gave no specifics, like rollout dates, for their smart grid products, but with deployment speed as a particularly mentioned goal it’s likely energy grids will start getting smart sooner rather than later.

City network technology in Shanghai, China
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