The rapid growth in LTE-enabled devices and carrier networks is opening up new opportunities develop solutions that can truly deliver connected things and the Internet of Things (IoT). WiFi, Bluetooth, EnOcean, 2G/3G are all wireless technologies that are used for connecting things to the Internet. The first three rely on local hubs supporting the right wireless technology. 2G/3G are legacy technologies that mobile carriers would love to turn off during the next 5-10 years.
LTE is the only mobile network that will be available across the globe for the next 10 years. Altair is already sampling LTE modems developed to support Cat 1 LTE (10 Mbit/s) and Cat 0 LTE (1 Mbit/s) in IoT applications. There will be further devices introduced over the coming years once 3GPP has approved the LTE enhancements for Machine-Type Communications (MTC) planned for Release 13.
Coverage is rapidly improving with consumers and governments expecting LTE to be a minimum requirement even for basic smart phones and services. In the UK O2 has a coverage obligation for indoor reception to at least 98 per cent of the UK population by the end of 2017. The combination of extensive coverage and low cost modems will drive carriers and device manufacturers to make LTE the technology of choice for IoT connectivity.