Ericsson and Qualcomm test Cat-M1 IoT for Telstra

LTE Cat-M1 test achieved using Ericsson Networks Software 17A and Qualcomm Technologies' new MDM9206 LTE modem running on Telstra 700 MHz spectrum

Ericsson and Qualcomm test Cat-M1 IoT for Telstra

Ericsson and Qualcomm Technologies have undertaken network and device testing of data communications on Cat M1, one of the newly 3GPP standardised low power, low throughput Internet of Things (IoT) solutions designed to work in licensed LTE spectrum.

The test used Qualcomm’s new MDM9206 modem, designed to support LTE Cat-M1 for IoT applications and services, utilising the 700 MHz band (Band 28) and was carried out at Ericsson headquarters in Sweden and witnessed by executives from Telstra.

Amongst the key features of Cat-M1 LTE are:

• Extended coverage with better link budget (up to 15 dB, compared with LTE Cat-1) allowing LTE signals to penetrate through more walls and floors to reach devices deployed deep indoors or in remote locations.
• Up to 10 years of battery life for typical delay-tolerant, low-throughput applications utilising Power Save Mode and Extended DRX.
• Lower complexity and cost due to single antenna and half duplex operation, up to 375 kbps.

Mike Wright, Group Managing Director Networks, Telstra, said: "Cat-M1 is a significant step forward, towards delivering cellular-based IoT capabilities which extend the capabilities of Telstra's mobile network.

“Cat-M1 will deliver both longer battery life and extended depth of coverage benefits that will be further complemented with the expected arrival of Narrowband IoT (Cat-NB1) devices later next year, along with a progression toward the greatly reduced module costs.

“Telstra expects its enterprise customers will greatly benefit from the productivity benefits Cat-M1, and later Cat-NB1, will support and looks forward to connecting a huge range of new and innovative IoT-enabled devices on the Telstra network."

To achieve this new network capability, Ericsson Networks Software 17A harnesses a combination of software features to deliver extended coverage, lower device cost relative to mobile broadband devices, and overall lower power consumption.

Collectively, these new capabilities will facilitate a boom in new devices connecting a range of internet connected "things", driving productivity and creativity across a range of industries, according to Ericsson.

Thomas Norén, Head of Product Area Network Products, Ericsson, said: "Cat-M1 will enable operators to drive new opportunities in the fast-emerging IoT market, which Ericsson believes is a key component of the Networked Society."

The Qualcomm Technologies MDM9206 modem is designed to support LTE category M1, upgradeable to LTE M1+ NB-1 dual mode with an anticipated upcoming software update. The dual-mode approach combines the best of both technologies and provides a global, scalable solution for IoT products, well suited for a diverse set of operator deployments.

The category M1 and NB-1 LTE modes designed in the MDM9206 modem bring many enhancements and optimisations to LTE that will help reduce IoT device complexity. The new technologies can also co-exist with today's LTE infrastructure and spectrum, which offers a superior solution to proprietary technologies for low-power wide-area networks.

Serge Willenegger, senior vice president, Product Management, Qualcomm Technologies, said: "We are very pleased with this successful testing of Cat M1 based on Qualcomm Technologies' MDM9206 modem. This modem represents the company's latest innovation supporting low-data, low-cost, low-power and low-bandwidth IoT applications and services.

“This is an important milestone that will also support the delivery of a new range of IoT services such as smart energy, asset tracking, industrial control and automation, building security, and more."

See also: Qualcomm clinches module design wins for its LTE Cat M1 and NB-1 modem

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