Verizon Business’ Chief Revenue Officer Sampath Sowmyanarayan took to the Mobile World Congress Los Angeles (MWC LA) keynote stage to announce that Verizon is committing further to IoT by enabling Verizon-certified IoT devices to connect to its 5G low-band spectrum network — branded as 5G Nationwide.
Additionally, the carrier debuted new intelligence capabilities that combine IoT network and device analytics on a single dashboard are available for customer trials now via Verizon ThingSpace, the company’s IoT marketplace and management platform, which includes a bundle of existing IoT services, such as Intelligence Analytics Dashboard, SIM Secure, Device Diagnostics and Location Services.
As part of this IoT push, Verizon certified Quectel’s new BC660K-GL module, becoming the first carrier in the U.S. to enable the module on its nationwide narrowband IoT network.
Powered by the Qualcomm 212 LTE IoT modem, the module supports multiple frequency bands with extremely low power consumption.
“Low cost for massive deployment is the name of the game here,” Sowmyanarayan said, explaining the module’s low cost of sub $4 makes it an ideal choice for new narrowband-IoT device launches. Connectivity plans from Verizon will start at less than $1.
In many ways, he continued, the modules can be compared to Wi-Fi access points, but with “much greater value proposition” because it’s “a turnkey cellular connectivity solution right out of the box.”
Soon, Sowmyanarayan said, Verizon-certified devices will also be compatible with the carrier’s Ultra Wideband, or 5G millimeter wave network.
With access to both networks, Verizon’s IoT platform will prove to be a powerful tool for enterprises as they look to gain data and insight from IoT devices and sensors.
“As we continue to expand 5G Ultra Wideband to more and more places,” he said, “the opportunity for sensor densification explodes.”
Verizon IoT devices and plans compatible with 5G Ultra Wideband are expected by the first quarter of 2022.
During the same keynote address, Verizon announced plans to integrate its wireless network with Amazon’s Project Kuiper constellation of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites to better serve unconnected or under-connected rural areas.