The Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) reported that 102 operators in 52 countries have now either deployed or launched at least one of the cellular IoT technologies, i.e., NB-IoT or LTE-M. Of these, 20 operators in 19 countries have deployed or launched both NB-IoT and LTE-M.
Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) and LTE-M are low power, wide area network (LPWAN) radio technology standards developed by the 3GPP to enable a wide range of IoT and machine-to-machine applications using cellular devices and frequency bands.
At the end of March 2019, GSA's tabulated data shows:
- 149 operators in 69 countries are investing in one or both of the NB-IoT and LTE-M network technologies.
- 22 countries are home to deployed or launched NB-IoT and LTE-M networks.
- 28 countries are home to only NB-IoT networks, either deployed or launched, and two countries are home to only LTE-M networks, either deployed or launched.
- 140 operators in 69 countries are investing in NB-IoT networks, of which 88 operators in 50 countries have deployed or launched their networks.
- 60 operators in 35 countries are investing in LTE-M networks, of which 34 operators in 24 countries have deployed or launched their networks.
“The global momentum behind LPWAN deployments is testament to the revenue opportunities which operators are racing to win and monetise in a diverse range of new IoT applications. Significantly, it can also be seen as a precursor to operators replacing legacy M2M services, such as GPRS-based trackers, and preparing the ground for the eventual switch-off of their 2G networks,” — Joe Barrett, president of GSA