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From: FUBHO9/22/2017 2:56:07 PM
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Telstra enables VoLTE across Cat-M1 IoT network

Telstra, Ericsson, and Qualcomm have enabled voice calls across the Cat-M1 network, with Telstra's IoT footprint now extending further than its 4G network.

By Corinne Reichert | September 20, 2017

Telstra has enabled voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) calls across its live Cat-M1 Internet of Things (IoT) network in partnership with Ericsson and Qualcomm, the telecommunications provider announced during the annual Telstra Vantage conference in Melbourne.

"Not only have we enabled [Cat-M1] in our network, if you imagine how we've got this device that's low cost and long battery life, as of around about today I'm announcing we've run our first voice call over one of these chips," Telstra director of Networks Mike Wright said on Wednesday afternoon.

"So with the first voice call with our partners Qualcomm, we now have a device that you could essentially enable anything anywhere and speak to it.

"If you think about the explosion we're seeing in voice-controlled homes ... the number of appliances and devices and things you could enable by putting voice into one of these low-cost chips blows the mind."

According to a blog post published on Wednesday afternoon by Wright, VoLTE across Cat-M1 IoT devices complements its embedded-SIM (eSIM) Telstra One Number offering announced last week.

"When standard voice calls are made on a VoLTE-enabled handset, VoLTE works by integrating the call into the 4G data stream; when it comes to IoT, adding VoLTE to Cat-M1 devices means those devices will have the ability to make voice calls to other devices, applications, and use cases which could benefit from voice," Wright wrote.

"With VoLTE over Cat-M1, this could provide opportunities to further leverage the battery-saving features of Cat-M1 for use in wearables where voice services are required."

The technology could be used in such instances as emergency calling panels in elevators, as well as day-to-day interactions with parking meters, information kiosks, whitegoods, and vehicles, Wright said.

Telstra's Cat-M1 network was switched on last month, with Wright on Wednesday announcing that it now covers more of Australia than its 4G network.

"As of just a few weeks ago, we completed the rollout of our Cat-M1 IoT network in all of our 4G base stations," he said.

"Our 4G network covers 1.4m square kilometres; with a feature called range extension, the system is able to actually send the bits repeated three times if they need to. We pushed the [Cat-M1] coverage range out from 1.4 to 3 million square kilometres.

"So we now have the coverage connectivity, the chipsets maturing, and, as we go up the stack, the capability of managing and activating the devices, the concept of an embedded SIM card ... combined with the enablement of management platforms and ultimately the data analytics platform that's going to unleash this new technology into the world."

In addition to Cat-M1, Wright added that Telstra also sees narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) as another "very important category".

The telco is thus aiming to establish an NB-IoT network within the next six months, according to a roadmap shown during Vantage, with Wright saying this will be enabled via network slicing.

"We've already built and got a network slice up and running for narrowband IoT, which we're just about to bring into the market," Wright said.

"There are two [IoT standards] due to different parts of the world's views on what's important. We don't care; we're going to support both."

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To: FUBHO who wrote (1111)9/22/2017 3:24:41 PM
From: hooligan
   of 1397
Just following up on your response to the analyst comments. The analyst addressed both issues in the same blurb Just wanted your thoughts on his comments and if you thought battery drain was all software based as well. So it was appropriate for me to address both issues in the same sentence

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From: FUBHO9/24/2017 1:32:28 AM
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Cellular Puts IoT on Speed Dial
| EE Times

China Telecom starts NB-IoT at $3/year

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Carriers are driving aggressively into cellular IoT, with China Telecom leading the way with narrowband IoT (NB-IoT). They are playing a game of catch-up that some expect they will win with low-power wide-area (LPWA) alternatives led by Sigfox and LoRa that had a two-year-plus head start.

That was the picture from the Mobile World Congress Americas, where each side made the case for its play in the emerging Internet of Things. “It feels like we are on the cusp of an IoT explosion,” said Karri Kuoppamaki, vice president of technology development and strategy at T-Mobile, which aims to roll out an NB-IoT network in the U.S. by June.

“What’s next and key is showing an ROI in real networks,” said Hardy Schmidbauer, chief executive of TrackNet, a startup launched this yearusing LoRa and Wi-Fi for asset tracking.

“Carriers would like to wipe out their LPWA competitors, and I believe they will,” said Michael Murphy, CTO in North America for Nokia. “There is zero doubt [that] carriers view this as one of their most important goals.”

China Telecom appears to be in the lead with millions of users on a national network that it switched on in June for NB-IoT that supports 20- to 60-Kbit/s data rates over 200-KHz channels. The carrier charges as little as $3 a year for data, and its hardware suppliers such as Huawei and ZTE say that they soon will be able to deliver NB-IoT modules for less than US$5, said Qi Bi, chief technical officer for China Telecom.

“We ran out of devices; people are lined up … I think NB-IoT will take off big time in China,” he said.

China Telecom was surprised by two early adopters — bike-sharing companies such as Mobike and companies monitoring rented washers and dryers in apartment complexes. “We thought our major app was meters, but bikes became one of our biggest customers,” he said. “The IoT space is full of adventures and surprises.”

China Telecom also supports LTE-M, which supports data rates up to 1 Mbit/s but is less efficient, using about 1.4-MHz channels. LTE-M will mainly serve wearables and will likely cannibalize smartphone revenues, he said.

The carrier has seen its average revenue per user stay flat from 2G to LTE generations. It hopes that NB-IoT breaks with past trends, opening up new revenue streams by offering “better battery life, lower cost and better coverage” than LTE-M, he added.

Next page: Carriers haggle over LTE-M versus NB-IoT

China Mobile showed NB-IoT modules for a network that it aims to switch on later this year. (Images: EE Times)

T-Mobile hopes to follow in China Telecom’s footsteps, rolling out a U.S. NB-IoT net by June 2018. “China’s plan to go big on NB-IoT will give a boost to the ecosystem” said Kuoppamaki. T-Mobile will use its 600-MHz band, which “has very good propagation characteristics for most apps” ranging from asset tracking, smart lighting, and flood monitoring to tracking pets and clothes.

Like China Telecom, T-Mobile also will support LTE-M for “selected use cases, but NB-IoT has the most potential and verticals we talk to see it the same way; there seems to be pent-up demand in the space,” he added, noting that few apps need LTE-M’s support for voice.

In the U.S., AT&T was the first carrier to switch on an LTE-M network, leveraging the fact that it’s a software upgrade while NB-IoT requires new servers for some networks. AT&T says that its LTE-M modules are available for as little as $7.50, data plans start at $1.50/month, and starter kits with modules, software, and cloud storage are available on Amazon for $99.

While it monitors NB-IoT, “the cost has not been a big delta between the two technologies, and most of the apps are being served well with LTE-M for us,” said Mike Troiano, an AT&T vice president focused on the industrial IoT. Likewise, “in power consumption, there’s arguably not that much difference,” he said, expressing confidence that LTE-M could support a 5- to 10-year battery life for many nodes.

Module maker Telit aims to cover the waterfront of cellular and unlicensed options. Click to enlarge.
The carrier is supporting the varied business models for IoT. It estimates data use so that OEMs can bundle multi-year data plans into the costs of their products, and it can enable a SIM card in a car to split bills, charging the carmaker for emergency calls and the driver for hot-spot use.

Like other providers, AT&T sees asset tracking as a big but varied market, It includes users such as Otis elevators, McPherson Oil storage tanks, and GE smart streetlights.

3GPP defined both LTE-M and NB-IoT as part of its Release 13. They are expected to deliver two generations of annual upgrades before still-undefined 5G IoT specs get written. The Release 14/15 specs are expected to support mesh networking, better location tracking, and possibly range extensions.

NB-IoT is “already almost as well optimized as possible for LTE. There will be other flavors coming between LTE-M and Category-1 LTE, but our next focus will be on 5G IoT to make smaller, more power-efficient devices, possibly with better coverage,” said Kuoppamaki.

Next page: The unlicensed players fight back

The LPWA space is likely to fragment over the next few years with all players getting significant slices of the pie, especially to early movers in unlicensed 800- to 900-MHz bands Sigfox and LoRa. Sigfox is expected to take the biggest slice, followed by NB-IoT and LoRA with LTE-M a distant fourth, according to a forecast from IHS Markit.

The Sigfox service aims at a broad bottom of an IoT pyramid. It supports the lowest data rates — just a few short, infrequent messages. Modules cost $2 and data rates start at $1/year in the U.S. and half that in Europe.

“It can cost up to US$10 to $12 a year if you have a lot of data, but few users ever get there … you need something below 3GPP, which will never get cheap, battery-efficient, and simple enough for things with a tiny bit of data,” said Allen Proithis, president of Sigfox in North America.

Like its rivals, Sigfox is not reporting the current number of its subscribers, but it claims use in Texas oil fields, large farms, and city water systems in San Francisco. It has networks running in 32 countries and an addressable market of 600 million people.

Sigfox sees itself as a network technology provider, generally working with partners that develop and deploy the final bits of software needed to create an IoT service. “Just in the U.S., there’s a half-dozen asset-tracking devices because everybody wants a slightly different mix of sensors,” said Proithis.

To date, Sigfox hasn’t made many inroads with cellular operators beyond a deal with KDDI in Japan and one with T-Mobile limited to “a market or two, but you will hear about some more because operators want to be a one-stop shop,” he said.

Unlicensed options provide a tier below cellular IoT, said Schmidbauer.

Its closest rival, the LoRa Alliance, has struck deals with more than 40 network operators, including Orange in France and Comcast in Europe. Rather than selling services, the alliance offers an open spec that anyone can adopt for public or private networks and has attracted more than 500 members and 350 trials to date.

LoRa’s asynchronous, spread-spectrum network enhances range and minimizes interference, said Schmidbauer, who was an early representative for LoRa when it was first rolled out by chip maker Semtech. Synchronous cellular IoT nets drain too much power to run nodes for five years or more on the kinds of sub-2,000-mAh, 3.6-V batteries [that] LoRa devices use, he said.

The unlicensed options are “not competing with NB-IoT. That’s like comparing Bluetooth and RFID — they are different apps and the overlap is quite small.”

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From: hollyhunter9/24/2017 9:49:56 AM
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On watch for clear above 3.65.

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From: FUBHO9/25/2017 6:22:25 PM
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Will Imagination Deals Deliver MIPS to China?

| EE Times

Imagination sells itself to Canyon Bridge, while agreeing to sell MIPS to another VC

TOKYO — Semiconductor industry watchers are pointedly curious about the fine print of two separate agreements governing the sale of U.K.-based IP licensor Imagination Technologies.

The sale of imagination was widely anticipated after the firm put itself up for sale in June, two months after its largest customer, Apple, said it would phase out use of Imagination technology in products that include the iPhone. But the deals announced Friday (Sept. 22), in which Imagination sold itself to Canyon Bridge Capital Partners and MIPS to Tallwood Venure Capital, left market watchers with several questions.

First, did Imagination structure both agreements in such a way as to allow Canyon Bridge — a private equity firm backed in part by the Chinese government — to have access to MIPS CPU IP?

More specifically, do the two VCs — which are buying Imagination and MIPS independently — know each other?

Further, by agreeing to sell, has Imagination practically opened the backdoor for Canyon Bridge to access MIPS CPU IP and patents, without review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)?

Imagination Technologies last Friday unveiled two separate deals, in which the Hertfordshire, U.K.-based company sold itself to Canyon Bridge, while simultaneously agreeing to sell MIPS to Tallwood Venture Capital.

China’s long-standing love affair with MIPS is no secret. Chinese vendors have been using MIPS for years and Beijing has reportedly said it wants to use MIPS architecture for all future government-sponsored projects.

Specifics of the deals
First, here are some specifics of last Friday’s announcements.

Imagination announced it is selling itself in an all-cash deal worth 550 million pounds ($742.5 million) to Canyon Bridge Capital Partners, the VC firm whose proposal to buy Lattice Semiconductor was recently blocked by U.S. President Donald Trump.

Imagination announced on the same day that it had agreed to sell the company’s global MIPS CPU business for $65 million to Tallwood Venture Capital, an investment firm with offices in Palo Alto, Calif., and Wuxi, southern China.

Although a majority of MIPS patents were sold in 2013 to Bridge Crossing, which was created by a member-based patent holding company called Allied Security Trust, all processor-specific patents and the other parts of MIPS Technologies were sold to Imagination.

Imagination explained in its press release that the completion of the MIPS disposal is a condition of Canyon Bridge’s acquisition.

Andrew Heath, CEO of Imagination said, in a statement, “The acquisition [by Canyon Bridge] will ensure that Imagination — with its strong growth prospects — remains an independent IP licensing business, based in the U.K., but operating around the world.”

Had Imagination kept MIPS, Canyon Bridge’s acquisition of Imagination would certainly invite CFIUS scrutiny.

The MIPS CPU business, according to Imagination, includes all MIPS intellectual property and patents. The MIPS IP and patents were developed in the United States and they belong to Imagination's U.S. business unit.

Left unclear at this point is if Imagination’s MIPS divestment to Tallwood might face CFIUS review.

Industry skeptics wonder if Canyon Bridge — already barred by the U.S. government from buying Lattice — plans to put an agreement in place, for example, to get perpetual license of all of MIPS IPs from Tallwood. If so, Canyon Bridge, as one of the Chinese government’s semi-private entities, could at long last get a grip on MIPS.

However, at this point, there is no proof that Imagination might have coordinated the two deals specifically to help Canyon Bridge fly under CFIUS’ radar in its quest for MIPS IPs. Financial deals like this — especially when involving players from the wild, wild East of China — are an elusive quarry for regulators.

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From: FUBHO9/26/2017 8:18:32 PM
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Verily, Apple, Fitbit, and Samsung are among nine firms chosen for FDA pilot program for faster approval of digital health tools — Agency to pre-certify some health technology companies — Tech companies have struggled with some health regulations — A federal agency that regulates apples wants …

More: US Food and Drug …, AppleInsider, SiliconBeat, The Verge, BGR, MacRumors, iPhone Hacks,, FierceHealthcare, Patently Apple, Axios, 9to5Mac, iPhone in Canada Blog, Fortune,, and Seeking Alpha

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From: FUBHO9/27/2017 9:29:57 AM
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C Spire Wireless To Debut Fixed Wireless Services in Mississippi

By Guile Canencia on September 26, 2017

C Spire Wireless has recently announced that it will be launching fixed wireless services in eight initial locations within the state of Mississippi. These markets are Greenville, Vicksburg, Columbus, Greenwood, Indianola, West Point, Belzoni, and Louisville. The overall plan is to cover 200,000 customers and business establishments in the Magnolia state by taking full advantage of different forms of wireless tech and various spectrums.

This announcement marks the first time that C Spire Wireless has tried its hand at fixed wireless services. The carrier is considered by many as the sixth biggest mobile operator in the United States, behind the Big Four ( Verizon Wireless, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint) and US Cellular. Current estimates peg the company’s customer base at a million mobile users.

With regards to the initial eight markets getting fixed wireless services soon, C Spire Wireless is looking to offer the service at $55 per month, without any cap on the usage. T
he mobile operator, however, did mention that it reserves the right to make sure its network and the overall customer experience is at optimum, which suggests that there may be some “prioritization” involved.

C Spire Wireless also stated that it is also planning to debut a wireless fiber service some time in the future. This service promises to deliver connection speeds of up to 100 mbps, and will first be rolled out to 70,000 customers and business establishments, and then eventually to 130,000 more users and enterprises (no pricing has been made public yet). To make sure the connection speeds remain fast, the wireless fiber service will not be going with last mile fiber construction, which not only can be costly, but also slow at times. The company said that according to the results of tests it had recently conducted, fixed wireless speeds are capable of reaching 1 gbps.

Apart from C Spire Wireless, other big carriers are also busy with their own respective fixed wireless efforts. Some may remember that back in June earlier this year, AT&T had revealed that it had completed its deployment of fixed wireless internet service at 70,000 locations across nine states, namely Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Three months ago, the number 2 biggest mobile operator in the country had stated that it was planning to further expand its fixed wireless service to 400,000 locations before the start of 2018, hoping to reach 1.1 million locations by decade’s end.

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To: FUBHO who wrote (1118)9/27/2017 9:43:03 AM
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C Spire Fixed Wireless Era Begins, Aims to Connect 200K with ‘Wireless Fiber’

Regional broadband provider C Spire announced an ambitious broadband plan that will dramatically increase their broadband base throughout Mississippi. The C Spire fixed wireless program is key to the broader C Spire Tech Movement which has a goal of reaching an additional 250K subscribers with wireless and FTTP technology.

The program will utilize an 8K route mile fiber backbone throughout Mississippi to expand their broadband footprint. Eighty percent of the expansion, or 200K subscribers, will be delivered by fixed wireless, with the remaining via FTTP, a C Spire spokesman confirmed to Telecompetitor.

The fixed wireless service will initially be launched in eight ‘underserved’ Mississippi communities, with dozens more to follow by the end of the year, according to the spokesman. C Spire is using a variety of fixed wireless technologies and spectrum for the service, said the spokesman.

“As the state’s leading technology company and one that gets its inspiration from our loyal customers, we have a responsibility to marshal our resources and expertise to equip our communities to effectively compete in the technology revolution and help close the gap on the digital divide,” said C Spire CEO Hu Meena in a press release announcing the expansion.

Wireless Fiber
C Spire calls their fixed wireless product wireless fiber, and it’s expected to provide 25 Mbps service. “Unlike competitors that are rolling out fixed wireless products of 10 Mbps as part of the FCC Connect America Fund commitment, our initial privately funded roll out will have typical throughput of 25 Mbps, a speed the FCC defined in 2015 as basic broadband Internet,” the C Spire spokesperson tells Telecompetitor.

They do expect those speeds to increase over time. “We have seen in many trials a future for 1Gbps fixed wireless.,” said the spokesperson.

An additional 50K subscribers hope to be added via FTTP, according to the spokesperson, but he declined to reveal current FTTP subscriber counts, only saying it’s “in the thousands.”

C Spire aims to target small business customers as well through the Tech Movement initiative. “C Spire aims to make the ultra-fast service available to one out of every five of the state’s 252,000 small businesses,” the press release states. “The initiative also includes programs to prepare and equip consumers and businesses to be successful in the new technology economy through education and workforce training, fellowship programs and showcasing the latest advancements and innovations in robotics, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and the Internet of Things.”

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From: FUBHO9/27/2017 10:48:35 AM
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Large-scale IoT projects have doubled in last year
27 September 2017 | James Pearce

Almost a third of companies worldwide have adopted internet of things (IoT) services, according to a report by Vodafone, but the pace of adoption has slowed.

Vodafone has released its fifth annual IoT Barometer, polling 1,278 executives across eight sectors, finding 29% of companies are now using some kind of IoT solution, up from just 12% in 2013.

The number of businesses using more than 50,000 connections has doubled in the last year, as companies rollout IoT solutions across their portfolios.

The pace of new adoption, however, has slowed over the last two years, rising just 2%. Despite this, 84% of respondents said their IoT usage has grown in the last year.

Businesses in the Americas have led the way in embracing large scale IoT projects, where 19% of companies using IoT have more than 10,000 connected devices, compared to 13% in Europe and 7% in Asia Pacific.

Vodafone director of IoT Erik Brenneis said, "Over the five years of this report we have seen the number of companies that have adopted IoT double, and projects have grown from small pilots to global rollouts of tens of thousands of connected devices.

"IoT is clearly here to stay and the future looks exciting as 79% of adopters are saying that IoT will have an enormous impact on the whole economy in the next five years. I believe we can now say that IoT has come of age and is proving itself across all industries and geographies."

The results also highlighted an interest in narrowband IoT technology (NB-IoT) with 28 per cent now considering it alongside other LPWA options for new projects. This is despite the fact rollouts of NB-IoT technology are still in the early stages in many markets, given the technology was only standardised in June 2016.

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From: FUBHO9/29/2017 12:15:08 PM
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Bernstein's Li said that Apple has invested in research and development for baseband modem chips responsible for mobile communication. Currently, it purchase these from Qualcomm and Intel.

"It would not be surprising that Apple develops its own [modem chip]," he said.

Two other chip industry executives also echoed Li's view that Apple will develop its own modem chips or at least boost its related capabilities - a view bolstered by Apple's poaching top Qualcomm modem chip engineer Esin Terzioglu earlier this year.

But Li added it is was unlikely that Apple could quickly roll out such components within two years. Modem chips have a very high threshold to develop and need to fulfill requirements of different operators worldwide.

A veteran chip industry executive estimates that it would require more than a minimum one thousand engineers to work on such a project.

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