Narrow Band (NB) -IoT Modem Chip Vendors

Interviews, IoT, LTE, New Radio, Tech Fundas

There are a number of  wireless technologies available for the Internet of things. These are mainly divided into two categories:

  • Short Range (Zigbee, WiFi, Bluetooth, Z wave)
  • Long Range (LoRa,SigFox, NB-IoT )

NB – IoT refers to the technology of the narrowband Internet of things a cellular IoT technology developed as part of 3GPP Release 13 and Release 14.

To know more about NB-IoT do read our post following post

Narrow Band LTE- NB-IoT

In this post we will be discussing about the vendors who are developing the Chip set for Narrow Band IoT.

QUALCOMM MDM9206

Qualcomm’s MDM9206 LTE modem is developed as a  multi-mode connectivity solution to  to provide reliable, optimized cellular connectivity for the next-generation of IoT products and services requiring low bandwidth and years of battery-life. The MDM9206  supports of LTE Cat-M1 (eMTC) and Cat NB-1 (NB-IoT), and allow device manufacturers to support ultra-low power consumption and cost-optimized solutions that cover full range of low data rate IoT applications. It  support of up to 15 global spectrum bands in MDM9206 which can allow OEMS to develop products based on single SKU to function in a diverse set of operator deployments worldwide, and thus helping to maximize the IoT products global reach and scalability.

More Detail available at https://www.qualcomm.com/products/mdm9206-iot-modem

MEDIATEK 2625

MT2625 is an NB-IoT 3GPP Release 14 enabled SoC that will enable ultra-low power and cost effective IoT devices for a wealth of applications ranging through home, civic, industrial or mobile use. It’s highly integrated design incorporates an NB-IoT modem DSP, antenna RF and base-band analogue front-end. It is  high functionality,  tiny in package size and low pin-count yields cost and size effective designs for many applications, while its highly integrated platform simplifies the product design process.

It is RTOS base, enables easy customization for applications such as home automation, cloud beacons, smart metering and many other static or mobile IoT implementations. Its wideband front-end module is designed to support all ultra-low/low/mid bands defined by the 3GPP Release 14, including up to Quad-band operation, allowing a single design to address worldwide markets, reducing cost and development time.

More Detail available at : https://www.mediatek.com/products/nbIot/mt2625

Samsung Exynos i S111

Exynos i S111 is an LTE modem integrated NB-IoT solution that delivers a reliable wide range communication with ultimate power efficiency for lower data rate IoT application. This device includes Modem, RF IC, CPU, SRAM, DCXO and Global Navigation Satellite System  (GNSS) capability on single module enables connected device manufacturer to provide compact, efficient and flexible design .

Below is the Modem Specifications:

  • CPU : Cortex-M7 200MHz
  • Cellular Capability: LTE Release 14 NB-IoT,  Downlink upto 127 Kbps and Uplink up 158 Kbps
  • On-Chip Memory: SRAM 512KB
  • Interface Supported : USI, UART, I2C, GPIO, eSIM I/F, SIDO, QSPI, SMC
  • Security Algorithm and Features: eFuse, AES, SHA-2, PKA, Secure Storage, PUF
  • Location and Positioning : GPS, Galileo, GLONASS, BeiDou, OTDA

More Details available at: https://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/minisite/exynos/products/iot/exynos-i-s111/

ALTAIR ALT1250

The ALT1250 is a 3GPP Release 13 CAT-M1 and NB1 IoT chipset, featuring ultra-low power consumption.The ALT1250 is a highly integrated device and incorporates an LTE base band processor, RFIC, PMU, memory, Power Amplifiers, filters and antenna switch, as well as a GNSS and a cellular based location engine and MCU subsystem for customer developed applications. An ALT1250-based design requires only a few external components, enabling miniature module sizes of less than 100mm. This chipset incorporates Altair’s OneSKUTM  RF technology which enables multiple LTE band combinations with a single hardware design. The chipset features ultra-low power consumption in a variety of modes, including 3GPP PSM and eDRX, enabling more than 10 years of battery life.

More Detail available at: https://altair-semi.com/products/alt1250/

SEQUANS  Monarch N

Sequance has introduced Monarch N, an NB-IoT platform designed and optimized for pure NB-IoT operation to enable massive IoT deployment. Monarch N is a single-chip LTE Cat NB1/NB2 platform, compliant with 3GPP release 14/15 of the LTE Advanced Pro standard. Monarch N is highly integrated and includes all primary functions in a small chip scale package (CSP), enabling modules smaller than 10 x 10 mm.

Sequance has other modem Monarch SX with supports  LTE Cat M1 and/or LTE Cat NB1 connectivity. This is very useful for low data rate M2M and IoT devices, including asset trackers, wearables, smart utility meters, smart city and smart home sensors.

More Detail available at:

SANECHIPS  RoseFinch7100

Sanechips Technology (previously  ZTE Microelectronics), introduced  RoseFinch7100 supporting NB-IoT (Narrow Band Internet of Things). It Based on SMIC’s 55nm Ultra Low Power, Radio Frequency, embedded Flash technology, to enable its use in application such as wireless meters, shared bikes, smart appliances, smart city, smart agriculture, and in other IoT fields. NB-IoT SoC RoseFinch7100 is specially designed for extensive low power IoT applications. In addition, RoseFinch7100 uses single chip design with minimum peripherals and supports 3GPP Release 14 full band with integrated cloud-chip security performance as well as open application architecture.

More Detail available at: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/smic-and-sanechips-zte-microelectronics-announce-the-first-commercial-nb-iot-chip-designed-and-manufactured-in-mainland-china-300527368.html

NORDIC SEMICONDUCTOR nRF9160

The nRF9160 from NORDIC semiconductor enables  LTE technology accessible for a wide range of applications and developers. By integrating an application MCU, full LTE modem, RF front end and power management in a 10x16x1.2 mm package, it also offers the most compact solution for cellular IoT (cIoT) on the market.It support LTE-M and NB-IoT  in bands from 700 MHz to 2.2GHz. It also support features like eDRX, PSM to opitimize power consumption and long battery life.

Targeting asset tracking applications, the nRF91 SiP Series includes a variant with built-in GPS support. It combines location data from the cellular network with GPS satellite trilateration to allow remote monitoring of the device position.

More Detail available at: https://www.nordicsemi.com/eng/Products/Low-Power-Cellular-IoT/nRF91-SiP-Series

QUECTEL BC95

Quectel Wireless Solutions, a leading global supplier of GSM/GPRS, UMTS/HSPA(+), LTE and GNSS modules, solutions and services. It launched its BC95 module in 2016, which supports NB-IoT and compliant with 3GPP Release 13 .

It is developed based on Huawei’s Hisilicon Boudica chipset, Quectel’s BC95 module features extended coverage, massive connection, low power consumption and low device cost, and is therefore ideal for Low Power Wide Area. applications.

More Detail available at: https://www.quectel.com/infocenter/news/246.htm

RIOT MICRO RM1000 

The RM1000 Cellular IoT Baseband is a low power system-on-chip (SoC) for the Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communication. The device is a dual-mode LTE-M / NB-IoT cellular baseband with integrated SRAM and full software stack comprising LTE L2/L3, AT Command stack, and TCP/UDP/IP stack. It is support basically 3GPP release 13 for LTE-M and NB-IoT.

More Detail available at: http://riotmicro.com/products/rm1000/

RDA8909/RDA8910

RDA8909 chip integrates RF transceiver, power manager, modem, analog baseband, Flash memory, pSRAM memory, etc., but also has a built-in ESIM version, which greatly reduces the customer’s terminal design difficulty and cost. Network standard, RDA8909, supports 3GPP-Realaes 14, supports NB-IoT and GSM / GPRS mode, including dual standby single and single standby. The RDA8909 also integrates 802.11b RX and BT4.2 / BLE functions for indoor positioning and short-range connections.

GCT SEMINCONDUCTOR GDM7243i

GCT’s GDM7243i features a flexible architecture designed for a wide variety of narrowband IoT applications such as trackers, wearables, and sensors for smart utility meters, smart cars, homes, cities, healthcare and more.  GCT’s IoT solution is also optimized for low data, low power M2M devices. The IoT possibilities are endless, with GCT’s ultra-low power solution, which offers easy plug and play and minimal operator maintenance.This chip is compliant 3GPP Release 13 LTE Advanced Pro standard.

More Details Available at : https://www.gctsemi.com/