LONDON -- The GSMA today announced that the mobile industry has agreed on technology standards for the emerging Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) market and these standards have been accepted by 3GPP. Industry alignment over common standards for Narrow Band IoT (NB-IoT), Extended Coverage GPRS (EC-GPRS) and LTE Machine Type Communication (LTE-MTC) will enable operators and their ecosystem partners to capitalise on a market estimated to be worth US$589 billion by 2020 or approximately 47 per cent of the machine-to-machine (M2M) market, according to Machina Research¹. The complementary technologies, which are set for 3GPP Release 13, are delivered through licensed spectrum and will cover all LPWA use cases, ensuring customer choice and helping the Internet of Things (IoT) market to flourish.
The GSMA’s ‘Mobile IoT Initiative’², which is supported by 27 of the world’s leading mobile operators, OEMs, chipset, module and infrastructure companies, is now working to accelerate the development of LPWA solutions and will implement multiple global pilots in early 2016 with full commercial solutions starting later in the year. The GSMA will also host a 3GPP ad-hoc working meeting during 18-22 January in Budapest to work towards finalising the details of the agreed NB-IoT standards.
“This is an important step in enabling operators to deliver industry standard solutions by extending their existing high-quality managed networks, service platforms and world-class customer management capabilities,” said Alex Sinclair, Acting Director General and Chief Technology Officer, GSMA. “The Low Power Wide Area market is a high-growth area of the Internet of Things and represents a huge opportunity in its development. A common and global vision will remove fragmentation, accelerate the availability of industry standard solutions and help the market to fulfil its potential.”