Carriers combine to launch LTE-M roaming initiative

05 June 2019 | Natalie Bannerman

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AT&T, KPN, Orange and Swisscom have come together to roll out LTE-M roaming across their respective IoT networks.

Through the collaboration the four enable IoT Low Power devices to efficiently operate on multiple networks across North America and Europe.

“More and more of our enterprise customers require global capabilities as they deploy IoT devices and applications,” said John Wojewoda, AVP of global connections management, AT&T. “These LTE-M roaming agreements help meet that demand and make it easier for businesses around the world to benefit from the power of a globalised IoT.”

LTE-M enables the deployment of a number of IoT applications with lower costs, compact modules, longer battery life and the ability to penetrate hard-to-reach locations. The network operates within licensed spectrum with carrier-grade security and is well adapted to support moving objects.

"The introduction of LTE-M creates many new possibilities for our partners, customers and prospects,” added Carolien Nijhuis (pictured), director IoT at KPN. "Roaming with LTE-M has been one of the most requested features by our customers in the market. We are very happy we're now able to fulfil their needs and unlock their international IoT-potential."

"Enabling access to roaming on LTE-M for our customers is a clear priority for Orange,” continued Didier Lelièvre, director mobile wholesale & interconnection, Orange. “We’re proud to be among the first operators to deliver such a roaming capability to our IoT customers and more widely to our partners across this market.”

Regionally, AT&T deployed its LTE-M network across the US and Mexico, KPN launched LTE-M across the Netherlands, Orange’s LTE-M network is available in France and Romania with Belgium, Slovakia, Spain and Poland in the works for later this year, while Swisscom has already deployed LTE-M across Switzerland.

“After offering the first nationwide LTE-M and NB-IoT networks in Switzerland, we are happy to prove our strong position on roaming and be among the first operators that enhance the key technology LTE-M for 2G replacement with international roaming,” said Julian Dömer, head of IoT at Swisscom.

All four carriers expect to add additional supporting operators to the roaming agreement to expand their cross-border capabilities in the coming months.