South Korean mobile operator SK Telecom and Nokia Networks have tested LTE low power communications technology to showcase IoT connectivity with Power Saving Mode, designed to enable Internet of Things modems to have a battery life of 10 years.
Power management will be a critical element of the future programmable world, particularly for IoT devices that need to be in the field for many years without a requirement to change the battery.
The over-the-air trial was conducted in a test bed within SK Telecom's network technology R&D centre, using Nokia's Flexi Multiradio 10 Base Station and IoT devices provided by GCT Semiconductor.
In essence, low power IoT technology streamlines device operation to essential capabilities, and switches to Power Saving Mode when there is no data transmission needed, thus enabling significant reduction in power consumption.
Key advantages of implementing LTE-based low power technology for IoT:
• LTE-RAN support for upcoming LTE-based modems in half-duplex mode allows manufacturers to reduce modem complexity and cut costs
• Power Saving Mode, a universal functionality in these LTE-based IoT modems, enables extension of battery life to 10 years-plus for autonomous operations
• With Power Saving Mode activated, location-tracking devices, or data-collection devices that monitor water or gas usage, are able to run for more than a decade without power supply or battery replacement.
Jin-hyo Park, Senior Vice President and Head of Network Technology R&D center, SK Telecom, said: "With this trial, we have successfully verified the capabilities of our IoT technology in resolving challenges posed by power supply and inefficient battery use, which are obstructing the widespread adoption of IoT devices. In collaboration with Nokia Networks, we will continue to push the boundaries for IoT and pave the path for broader application of services powered by this next-generation technology."
Andrew Cope, Head of Korea, Nokia Networks, said: "This achievement, a country-first, adds another important dimension to our relationship with SK Telecom as we set the pace for the telecommunications industry in Korea. Moreover, it underlines our focus on setting the platform for the global adoption of LTE as a technology-of-choice for IoT, evolving to NB-LTE (Narrow Band LTE) for IoT in the future, as we head towards a world where everyone and everything is connected. This marks yet another step forward on Nokia's goal of bringing NB-LTE to life."