GSMA mobile IoT project backed by major EU operators, infrastructure companies

Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefonica, Telecom Italia and Telenor are among 26 companies backing a new GSMA project that aims to accelerate the launch of mobile Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

Infrastructure companies Ericsson, Alcatel-Lucent, Huawei and Nokia are also contributing to the GSMA's Mobile IoT Initiative, which is focussed on the use of Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) technology in licensed spectrum.

In a statement, the GSMA said LPWA networks are an emerging area of the IOT market. The networks are designed to be used in machine-to-machine (M2M) applications with low data rates, long battery lives and that operate for long periods without attention.

LPWA connections are tipped to hit 2.7 billion by 2022, the association added citing research from Analysys Mason, Machina Research and Strategy Analytics.

Alex Sinclair, acting director general and CTO at the GSMA, said the market opportunity for LPWA networks "will be a significant driver in the development of the IoT and it's essential that the mobile industry address the requirements for LPWA cases early on."

Mobile IoT Initiative partners will collaborate to accelerate the commercial launch of mobile IoT technologies through demonstrations, development of proof of concepts and trials of LPWA licensed spectrum technologies, the GSMA said.

The group will also offer feedback and analysis to the 3GPP to boost its IoT standardisation efforts. As no single technology can address all LPWA use cases, the GSMA said partners will focus on three proposed licensed 3GPP standards: LTE Evolutions; GSM evolutions, and Clean Slate technologies.

Initial specifications for LPWA technologies are due to be completed by the year-end, with the first implementations due in early 2016 as the group moves towards launching commercial solutions later that year.

Sinclair said the wide range of partners signing up to the Mobile IoT Initiative shows that the "industry is clearly united" behind the project, which will result in a "common vision to accelerate the availability of industry standard solutions, removing market fragmentation and accelerating adoption."

For more:
- view this GSMA announcement

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