& cplSiteName &

Metal Machine Music: Dedicated M2M Networks on Horizon

Dan Jones
4/15/2014
50%
50%

Do wirelessly enabled cars, sensors, and other devices need their own dedicated network, free from human-generated data packets?

Maybe so -- there are a least a couple of companies betting that machines talking to other machines could use their own dedicated radio networks for M2M communication. M2M traffic generally travels over operators' cellular networks, but some companies are now moving to develop dedicated networks for M2M communications. (See GSMA Predicts 250 Million M2M Connections in 2014.)

M2M Spectrum Networks LLC has said that it plans to create a purpose-built network across the US for machine-to-machine communications. "We will cover the top 200 cities in the US before year-end and have secured two pilot customers we are conducting trials with in the second quarter of this year," Doreen Trant, senior vice president of network implementation.

The network is expected to cover 75% of the US population by the end of 2015, and 95% by the end of 2016. The operator has various partnering deals with companies such as Commdex, Crown Castle, Raveon, TrueNet, 4G Unwired, and Powder River to deploy the network.

"Our network is unique in that we have aggregated under-utilized spectrum coupled with our technology that will provide a very efficient and secure network with inter-operable capabilities," she notes.

The operator is using "Part 90 licensed spectrum" and "purpose-built cognitive radios" to create the network. That means there are multiple frequency bands that could be used as part of the deployment.

M2M Spectrum isn't the only company working towards an M2M-specific network that could support signals from connected cars, smart sensors, RFID tags, and more. Rutberg & Co. noted that French startup Sigfox has grabbed just over $20 million in recent VC funding to develop a low-cost, energy-efficient "ultra-narrowband" cellular network dedicated to the Internet of Things. (See Mobile VC Tops $1B in March Madness.)

Sigfox is even more ambitious than M2M Spectrum. It states that it wants to deploy in 60 countries over the next five years.

By the way, although the terms "M2M" and "The Internet of Things" are often used somewhat interchangeably, there's been some debate from Telefonica and Axeda about the differences recently.

The Internet of Things is a grander concept than machine-to-machine, looking at a future where virtually everything is networked and communicating. Machine-to-machine, however, is the baseline communications concept that underpins the growth of IoT.

Whatever we end up calling them, Light Reading likes to imagine that machine-specific communications will sound a bit like this.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
4/21/2014 | 6:10:10 AM
TrueNet
Looks like TrueNet was already listed as a partner, but the pair made it official with a release today: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1861354. Not much additional detail on the network tech though.
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
4/15/2014 | 1:00:15 PM
Re: Why a new network?
Another one: how will they address international apps? Roaming deals? Think any operator would want to hook up with them abroad?
DanJonesLRMobile
50%
50%
DanJonesLRMobile,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/15/2014 | 10:52:28 AM
Re: Why a new network?
All good questions...
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
4/15/2014 | 10:45:43 AM
Why a new network?
I'm not sure I see the need for a separate M2M network. The point of M2M, and the reason operators are so interested, is that most devices use very little data, so it doesn't tax the network. It's only upside in additional revenue for them. If the connections become too much, it could harm the consumer experience, but is there a real concern that will happen?
Featured Video
From The Founder
The 'gleaming city on a hill,' Steve Saunders calls it. But who is going to take us from today's NFV componentry to the grand future of a self-driving network? Here's a look at the vendors hoping to make it happen.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
September 28, 2017, Denver, CO
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue – London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Could 5G Have Found Its Glass Ceiling?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 9/20/2017
1 Million Pirate Set-Top Boxes Sold in the UK
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 9/20/2017
Comcast Shuts Down OTT Again
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/19/2017
Why Amazon May Be Cable's Biggest Threat
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/22/2017
T-Mobile, Sprint in Merger Talks, Again – Report
Iain Morris, News Editor, 9/20/2017
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed