The Internet of Things is one of the global trends that will bring huge business value. Despite such a multi-layered network, how can services with low traffic, small manual intervention, and long deployment times be improved in specific scenarios, such as smart meter reading, smart parking, ecological agriculture, smart buildings, etc? Widely commercial 2G/3G/4G/5G, WLAN, and other wireless technologies cannot cope. With the continuous development of Internet of Things communication technology, NB-IoT technology has received more and more attention and applications.

What is NB-IoT?
NB-IoT is a Low Power Wide Area Network solution defined by the 3GPP standard, and it is one of the technologies that overcome power consumption and distance limitations associated with mainstream cellular wireless solutions for IoT, and it uses a licensed spectrum.

NB-IoT technical features
As a revolutionary new air interface technology, NB-IoT has the following characteristics:
1. Narrow spectrum: 200kHz;
2. The terminal transmits a narrowband signal, which improves the power spectral density of the signal, improves the coverage gain of the signal, and improves the efficiency of spectrum utilization;
3. Repeated transmission of the same data packet can also achieve better coverage gain;
4. In addition, this technology reduces the activation ratio of the terminal and reduces the complexity of the baseband of the terminal;
5. Four capabilities of NB-IOT: wide coverage, massive connections, lower power consumption, and lower chip cost;
6. Based on the technology of the existing cellular network, NB-IOT can quickly support the market demand of the industry by upgrading the existing network, becoming the fourth mode on the GUL network.

It’s also a cellular network, so why is there no NB-IoT industrial router, but a 5G wireless industrial router?

5G wireless industrial router
Although NB-IoT and 5G belong to cellular networks, NB-IoT consumes much lower power than LTE. 5G supports massive connection densities, low device power consumption, low latency and provides wide coverage. NB-IoT is characterized by improved indoor coverage (with stronger penetration), support for a large number of low-throughput devices, low latency sensitivity, and ultra-low device cost.

In short, NB-IoT is suitable for transmitting text data with smaller bytes, while 5G wireless industrial routers are suitable for transmitting network data with large bandwidth such as video surveillance. So based on NB-IoT network there are modules and DTU devices, but no industrial routers.

NB-IoT will cover 25% of IoT connections in the future. According to market research firm Machina, for operators facing user saturation and OTT impact, NB-IoT will open up a vast new market, bringing more than three times the Connection growth; and for traditional industry practitioners who are actively transforming and upgrading, it also has the inherent advantages of operator networks in adapting to scenarios, network performance, controllability, and reliability.