In the year of the pandemic, Narrowband IoT has played a significant part in the emerging trends of technology. With its connection to the new 5G network connections being rolled out, we learn exactly what impact NB IoT has had in the real-world scenario.
What is NB IoT?
Narrowband Internet of Things, also known as NB IoT, is a standard low power wide area technology resource developed to enhance & introduce a range of new Internet of Things (IoT) devices and services. Due to its low power standard, NB IoT is known to reduce power usage in devices providing an eco-friendly alternative in many cases. Most NB IoT devices are known to have a battery life greater than ten years due to its low power consumption in the intended applications. NB IoT generally uses all mobile network connections ranging from 2G, 3G, 4G & now 5G. To fully utilize this technology, each manufacturer partners with software developers to provide both hardware & software capable of delivering the intended purpose.
Purposes & reasoning behind innovation
Now that we know what Narrowband Internet of Things is, what impact has it exactly had on the industry, specifically during the COVID-19 pandemic? The effect of COVID-19 has affected everyone differently, ranging from minuscule to severe in the cooperate world. Even though the outbreak of COVID-19 has slowed down research & implementation of NB IoT devices due to redundancies and fewer development teams available, the positive adoption of these devices is evident.
More & more businesses adopt the NB IoT approach as it provides a “touch-free” and less risky way of navigating, communicating & processing business procedures.
One example would be offices & hotels. The adoption of door handles that operate with NB IoT devices can help eliminate the virus’s spread since people will not need to “grab” the knob to open the door; It will be unlocked at a certain time with a particular card application. Another industry that has seen a big impact from NB IoT devices is the logistic & transportation industries.
Finally, another significant impact from NB IoT would be the agriculture industry, with NB IoT allowing farming with the use of NB IoT technologies. With NB IoT devices, companies now can monitor items in transit, check inventory, provide security and much more with a simple application interface developed for specific usage.
Another big plus of the NB IoT devices during the pandemic would be for the government to collect data to combat the virus. As you know, wearables such as smartwatches are all known as NB IoT devices.
One positive usage during the pandemic of these wearables would be the data collection provided on each person’s activities, which can be used to predict trends.
Said trends can be valuable as of means of behaviour prediction to be used to combat the virus.
Another big medical/health usage of NB IoT during the pandemic would be thermometers, blood pressure meters, and glucose checkers. These can all be connected to Wi-Fi & 4G networks to allow the data to be transmitted and stored for remote analysis by medical practitioners. It can be lifesaving as we know.
Now that we spoke about the positives of the intended usage and what it could provide companies, there is one other major positive to NB IoT. That is the eco-friendly side of things.
Because NB IoT devices are so efficient, one battery can last anywhere between 10-15 years depending on development & intended use.
A D-sized battery emits very low pollution and, as a result, can lower a companies energy blueprint; This will ultimately save the industry and help the environment with the move against pollution and carbon footprints.
Has NB IoT hit its peak? Is there more to come? Let’s have a look at the statistics of NB IoT in 2020.
NB IoT in the technology sector was the fastest growing sector in mid-2020, making it one of the most integral parts of technology in the future.
Now it is known with 5G technologies being introduced, NB IoT will not only adapt but become “energized” with such connections. It will allow for more extensive scaling, a more distant approach as well as becoming more reliable.
This is apparent with the example provided by “QUALCOMM’s” innovation of NB IoT. In April 2020, QUALCOMM released an NB IoT device so efficient that it holds a 15-year battery life while using the latest 5G networks for its operations.
It’s predicted that NB IoT will hit a staggering 3.2 Billion devices being operated worldwide by 2024, beating its the LTE-M sibling.
So, what can we learn from NB IoT & the current pandemic we live in?
As we speak, the pandemic is causing a staggering change in operations in all industry sectors; This leaves much room for research and development into which technologies can help companies become more efficient yet providing the revenue needed. No matter if it is for safety, health, or revenue, NB IoT currently holds the answer to the movement into contactless entries in the future.
It has currently been implemented in multiple practices in 2020 such as the tourism sector in hotels, the medical industry, fashion, wearables and logistics.
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