AT&T on Wednesday announced an accelerated timeline for its LTE-M deployments in the United States and Mexico following a previously announced pilot in California.
According to the carrier, AT&T plans to have its LTE-M network deployed across its nationwide 4G footprint in the second quarter of this year. A rollout in Mexico will follow by the end of the year, with the combined deployments spanning the 400 million people covered by its 4G network.
AT&T said the decision to speed deployments follows a successful pilot that was recently conducted in San Ramon, Calif. The carrier said it switched on its first LTE-M enabled commercial site in October to support the pilot.
A second pilot was launched in Columbus, Ohio, AT&T said. The LTE-M pilots in both cities will continue through the end of March, the carrier reported.
“Thanks to the success of our pilot, we’re on track to support LTE-M devices across our commercial network in the U.S. and Mexico ahead of schedule,” Chris Penrose, AT&T’s president of Internet of Things Solutions, said. “We’re seeing real momentum for LTE-M that will let us connect more end points than ever before. And we can do it at a lower cost with superior performance and carrier-grade security.”
AT&T said LTE-M will help facilitate large-scale IoT deployments and noted LTE-M devices have been designed for lower cost, longer battery life, better underground and indoor coverage, and smaller module sizes than traditional IoT devices. The carrier said it is currently in the process of testing LTE-M network and chipset technology in consumer devices alongside Samsung, as well as across smart meters, smart pallets, smart soda fountains, shipping containers, connected vehicles, and home security and automation.
“Seeing our devices live in the field shows our vision is quickly becoming reality,” John Walsh, CEO of AT&T’s pallet trial partner RM2, said. “Our combined work has proven we have a technology that can cause real improvement in the logistics services industry.”
Filed Under: Infrastructure, IoT • IIoT • internet of things • Industry 4.0