February 01, 2017

Wide-Area Wirelss Communication Challenges for the Internet of Things

  • Dhillon H.
  • Huang H.
  • Viswanathan H.

The deployment of Internet of Things (loT) devices and services is accelerating, aided by ubiquitous wireless connectivity, declining communication costs, and the emergence of cloud platforms. Most major mobile network operators view machine-to-machine (M2M) communication networks for supporting loT as a significant source of new revenue. In this article, we discuss the need for wide-area M2M wireless networks, especially for short data packet communication to support a very large number of loT devices. We first present a brief overview of current and emerging technologies for supporting wide area M2M, and then using communication theory principles, discuss the fundamental challenges and potential solutions for these networks, highlighting tradeoffs and strategies for random and scheduled access. We conclude with recommendations for how future 5G networks should be designed for efficient wide-area M2M communications.

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