What is Nb-IOT? The Narrow Band IoT (NB-IoT) is a radio technology designed and standardised by 3GPP.
The Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) is a global consortium amongst several subjects who work to harmonise the telecom system of different countries across the globe.The NB-IoT is focused for indoor coverage with low cost, low consumption and high number of devices connected.
3GPP released the latest specification (V13, as we are writing) on June 2016 and Release 14 is under discussion.
The Nb-IoT was planned to be implemented by the current LTE operators and to use the licensed cellular networks.
Indeed operators like Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, Telefonica, KPN, Orange and TIM started immediately to deploy the network and nowadays, depsite not complete, the coverage reached quite a good level.
GSMA published and maintains the global coverage map, see it here.
Device-side, there are well-know market players developing the integrated circuit chips to equip end nodes and bay stations: amongst them, U-Blox, Quectel, Huawei and many others.
Actually the current offer of NB-IoT devices is at a fair level and steady growing.
Regarding the transmission system, the spec guarantees a minimum bandwidth both for downlink and uplink, equal to 180KHz.
Referring to what mentioned earlier about using exisitng LTE networks, we have to mention that a Physical Resource Block into the LTE band carrier can be replaced with a NB-IoT’s one.
Moreover there are just few modifications for physical channels used versus LTE and the algorithm to manage the channel contentions is similar to the one used into LTE.
To summaryze about NB-IoT:
– Modulation: OFDM/QPSK
– Throughput: 200 kbps
– Payload: 1500 bytes
– Link Adaptation: Yes
– Bandwidth: 180 KHz
– Coverage: 22km (it depends by the area to cover)
– Bi-Direction: yes
– Battery life: up to 10 years (again ,it depends by the object setting)
– Localization: No
Get more informations about NB-IoT from 3GPP website.