Product News: EMnify’s Global LTE-M roaming for low-power IoT applications

April 15, 2021
Promises IoT businesses the ability to deploy LPWAN-enabled devices in global markets.

EMnify announced global roaming of LTE-M, a 3GPP standard for Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) built on 4G networks and forward-compatible with 5G. With this launch, EMnify is adding LTE-M support to its current 2G, 3G, and 4G network access, providing a future-proof connectivity option for cellular IoT in answer to worldwide GSM and UMTS phase-out.

LTE-M promises unique advantages for global IoT deployments, including:

  • Long battery life with Power Save Mode (PSM) and Extended Discontinuous Reception (eDRX) features
  • Extended range for improved indoor and underground connections
  • Low-cost modules that are only 30% of 4G module price

Compared to NB-IoT—the other cellular LPWAN variance—LTE-M offers wider national and international roaming availability, per EMnify. The technology also comes with mobility support and higher data rates to enable a wider range of connected use cases such as asset tracking and fleet management. Faster data speed further reduces power consumption in medium-bandwidth transmission like over-the-air firmware updates, as devices stay online for a much shorter time.

"We recognize LTE-M is the go-to connectivity for a variety of IoT applications because it allows for innovative features not available with previous cellular generations while solving the challenge of 2G/3G sunsetting in regions like North America," said Alexander Schebler, VP carrier relations and co-founder at EMnify. "To deliver these benefits to customers, we are proactively working with our network partners to enable LTE-M roaming as soon as it is technically available in their networks."

EMnify offers LTE-M access in 45 countries with varying support levels depending on the customer's deployment location, including:

  • Expected coverage where LTE-M access is technically available by default based on standard 4G implementation of EMnify's network partners
  • Validated coverage where LTE-M availability is frequently tested and confirmed by EMnify's internal tests
  • Guaranteed coverage where LTE-M service is guaranteed via official roaming agreements with EMnify's network partners

EMnify empowers IoT businesses with a single SIM card for global cellular and LPWAN connectivity in 180 countries, along with a pay-as-you-go subscription model that can start at small data volumes under 1 MB. In addition to the new LTE-M launch, the company is also working on NB-IoT and 5G roaming with first agreements already signed, to ensure customers have the best access to the latest radio technologies.