Orange conducts LTE-M field trials ahead of 2018 launch

OrangeOrange Business Services has accelerated its LTE-M strategy to support the development of internet of things (IoT) solutions for the enterprise market.

Orange in February 2017 said that the Group would be prioritizing LTE-M across its footprint in Europe.

Orange’s LTE-M field trials

In Spain, Orange has started several tests with strategic customers and device manufacturers in an open ecosystem of participation. The trials cover different sectors and applications, including smart utility, smart cities and facility management.

In Belgium, Orange is preparing the opening of an LTE IoT City in Antwerp, open for customer pilots in Q4 2017.

In France, Orange is planning internal trials on both technical and usage aspects starting in Q4 2017.

Orange aims to launch LTE-M network in 2018.

The availability of LTE-M is part of the Group’s dedicated program to support connected object and module makers. Orange welcomes object makers in its “Open IoT Lab” (compliant with GSMA) located at Orange Gardens.

The first equipment Orange has tested on its LTE-M network includes:

# rugged products designed to be used in asset tracking and Industry 4.0 use cases

# GPS personal tracker with a waterproof casing that is targeted at lone worker applications

# Small GPS tracker developed for tracking valuable items

LTE-M partners

# rugged products from Ercogener, including a u-blox module

# GPS personal tracker designed by Meitrack, based on a Quectel module

# Small GPS tracker developed by Sercomm with a Sequans Communications module

LTE-M network will be integrated into the Orange IoT strategy through the Datavenue IoT and Data Analytics offer. It will enrich the connectivity solutions, such as LoRa, 2G/3G/4G and Wi-Fi, which connects objects. The LTE-M tested modules also enhance the Datavenue connected device catalog, which now has 80 objects.

“We believe that LTE-M is a perfect match for a wide range of IoT use cases in Industry 4.0, fleet management and asset tracking,” said Olivier Ondet, vice president of IoT and Analytics, Orange Business Services.

Demonstrations of Orange LTE-M network (running live on the Orange Spain network), equipment and use cases will be on display at the IoT Solutions World Congress in Barcelona.