Deutsche Telekom is driving the deployment of NarrowBand IoT (NB-IoT) across Europe and North America.
Now live across eight European markets as well as the United States, the company presses ahead with nationwide rollout of its low-power machine network in the US by mid-year and in many of its European markets by the end of 2018.
The extensive availability of the sensor network paves the way for innovative and cost-effective NB-IoT solutions in virtually all business areas, including transport & logistics, industrial automation, and the public sector.
One of Deutsche Telekom’s key focus areas for NB-IoT deployment is the development and implementation of smart city solutions based on NB-IoT, as the sensor network is ideally suited for many pioneering applications in this sector, including smart lighting, smart public transport and smart waste management.
“Deutsche Telekom’s aim is to deliver this exciting technology across Europe and the US as quickly as possible, both by making the NB-IoT sensor network available everywhere as well as actively driving the development of innovative NB-IoT solutions,” says Ingo Hofacker, responsible for the IoT business at Deutsche Telekom. “The extensive availability of NB-IoT network coverage in 2018 beyond the initial city-led pilots we have seen last year lays the ground for NB-IoT solutions to be deployed not only locally, but also nationally and across borders.”
European market roll-out of NB-IoT on schedule
Deutsche Telekom has rolled out its NB-IoT sensor network to approximately 600 towns and cities across Germany since it was launched in June 2017, with more than 200 companies now trialing the technology already via commercially available test packages. Nationwide rollout in the Netherlands was already completed in May 2017 and Deutsche Telekom has brought the technology to six further European markets by the end of 2017.
In Austria, Deutsche Telekom’s subsidiary T-Mobile has become the first operator to roll out NB-IoT commercially with the city of St. Pölten already fully covered and nationwide rollout of NB-IoT to be completed by the fall of 2018. In Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary and Greece, NB-IoT networks are live already across many cities with nationwide coverage expected in many countries by the end of 2018 as well.
NB-IoT labs and partnerships foster ecosystem
Deutsche Telekom also actively pushes forward the NB-IoT ecosystem through various joint research and development facilities in this area. Deutsche Telekom’s innovation program WARP NB-IoT, powered by its incubator hub:raum, was established as a follow-on after the successful conclusion of the NB-IoT Prototyping Hub last summer. Startups are offered access to cutting-edge technology and technical support in the WARP NB-IoT Prototyping Lab, helping them to accelerate product development, prototyping and market implementation.
Furthermore, Deutsche Telekom has established a European Smart Solutions Center (ESC), based in Budapest. The ESC will initially focus on the development and implementation of NB-IoT based smart city solutions in Europe, offering also a unique competence in consulting cities to utilize funds for urban development, allocated by the European Union.
Last, the recent launch of the Telekom Open IoT Labs together with the Fraunhofer-Institute for Material Flow and Logistics will see Fraunhofer scientists and Deutsche Telekom IoT experts collaborate on NB-IoT projects, including the development and testing of systems aimed at the manufacturing, logistics and aviation industries. The lab will also be open to external companies seeking to develop application-specific NB-IoT prototypes.