Jio, Samsung to deploy India-wide NB-IoT network

02 Mar 2018

India's Reliance Jio Infocomm has announced it is collaborating with Samsung to deploy a nationwide narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) network.

The extended partnership, announced during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, will also see Samsung supply equipment to help the operator reach its goal of bringing LTE coverage to 99% of the Indian population while expanding its network capacity nationwide.

Jio's planned NB-IoT network is expected to be the first of its kind in the country. It will be designed to support a variety of consumer and enterprise use cases such as vehicle tracking, smart appliances, smart metering, security and surveillance.

The NB-IoT network will utilize Jio's existing spectrum and base stations, and will be supported by a new and dedicated Cellular IoT virtualized core.

The commercial NB-IoT network launched in Mumbai last month and will soon be extended to other parts of the country.

“Making sure that everyone benefits from mobile broadband that is both available and affordable to all is our top priority. We will once again partner with Samsung to offer a suite of innovative services for all users,” Jio president Jyotindra Thacker.

Jio launched nationwide 4G services in late 2015 with a disruptive strategy of offering completely free services during an extended promotional period, and subsequently charging only for data. Its entry triggered a wave of consolidation and the exit of some smaller operators due to the competitive pressures.

Meanwhile Sri Lanka's Dialog Axiata has engaged Ericsson to roll out a Massive IoT network capable of supporting both Cat-M1 and NB-IoT technologies.

The deployment, the first in South Asia, spans Dialog Axiata's LTE RAN.

"With this launch, we are seeking to accelerate the adoption of innovative technologies by enterprises and help them create exciting new products and services for consumers,” Dialog Axiata group CTO Pradeep De Almeida said.

“The Cat-M1/NB-IoT network will amplify opportunity for solutions such as smart metering for utilities, smart parking, smart bins, smart environmental sensors for smart cities, logistic solutions as well as other applications in agriculture and farming."

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