M2M technologies for MNOs

22 Apr 2014

Today’s cellular networks have a few shortcomings in relation to the new demands from the Internet of Things (IoT). While existing cellular technologies give in-building service they do not provide sufficiently deep coverage for some M2M applications such as metering. No current cellular technology (Rel-11 and earlier) can support very long terminal operating life on a small battery.

Today, cellular GSM/GPRS comes closest to serving this market but does not sufficiently provide all characteristics of the ubiquitous cellular network for IoT. LTE, the latest cellular radio access technology, has been designed from the ground up to provide efficient mobile broadband data communications. Both LTE and UMTS/HSPA devices in their current forms are significantly more expensive than GSM/GPRS.

This white paper discusses two alternative approaches to address these concerns: an evolution of LTE; or the development of a dedicated new radio access technology.

The purpose of this paper is to share across the industry a vision of how a low-cost M2M solution could be developed, either as an integrated part of or a complement to the evolution of current cellular technology. This would allow operators to provide connectivity for all sorts of devices in the future in the mass IoT market.

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