The cellular industry once believed it would win the SuperBowl of IoT Connectivity until non-cellular low-power wide-area technology (e.g., SigFox, Lo-Ra, etc.) made an end run around them and started building out networks and capturing market share in the highly competitive IoT connectivity solutions market.
But the with the recent completion of the NB-IoT standard by 3GPP, the cellular standards org, the IoT "connectivity" pendulum appears to be swinging from LPWA to Cellullar once again.
What is the big deal about NB-IoT technology? 3GPP says the NB-IoT standard is the specification for cellular-based, low-power, wide area (LPWA) networking technology for IoT uses. It boasts that NB-IoT provides:
- Low throughput a very large number of devices
- Deep coverage for nodes located in hard-to-reach places (i.e., smart utility meters located deep in basements)
- Low power consumption for very long battery life (10-20 years).
- Low Complexity allowing for low-cost devices
As a result, NB-IoT technology makes cellular IoT connectivity a viable alternative to non-cellular LPWAN technologies.
What do you think?
Do you think cellular IoT will ultimately take market share away from non-cellular LPWA technologies? Or has NB-IoT technology come a bit too late, and well after IoT engineers and product designers have already decided to opt for non-cellular LPWA technology such as SigFox, LoRa or others?
Would you consider using cellular NB-IoT technology for a future project?
Feel free to share your thoughts below in the comments section.