Solving a Spectrum Shortage for the Internet of Things with 2G

Fifty billion Internet-capable devices – if that indeed is the number – capable of communicating sensor data through the networks we use today, probably won’t have Ethernet plugs.

And if they’re mobile by nature, they won’t rely on Wi-Fi routers. If soon there are more devices communicating over the Internet than there are people, states the general presumption since the 50 billion projection was first quoted last year, there simply isn’t that much wireless spectrum to cover it all.

This is where this story would end if we all put our faith in presumptions instead of technology. Last January, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published a report (PDF available here) that foresaw a world of intercommunicating devices as a critical component of a healthy global economy. It noted the term “Internet of Things,” but settled upon the more industrial term for the concept, machine-to-machine communication (M2M). The report created use cases for M2M devices that were as simple as automotive speedometers registering relative speed, perhaps to other devices within the same car, to brake monitoring systems that communicate a car’s relative ability to stop to insurance companies. But the system that could make M2M both ubiquitous and inexpensive, the report made clear, is ironically the same system that carriers like AT&T are begging to decommission: the 2G network.

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Source: ReadWriteWeb