5,000 municipalities will be able to use the new generation Internet of Things services. In fact TIM is the first operator in Italy ready to offer the commercial IoT service based on LTE technology thanks to the roll-out of Narrowband technology which will be available from the end of October for over 75% of TIM's 4G network, which will be completed by this coming January.
This is an important milestone after the one reached last April when TIM – first one in Italy and among the first ones in Europe – carried out a field test on the first smart water meter which is capable of automatically sending meter readings via the live NB-IoT network. This test was carried out by Olivetti, the digital hub of the TIM Group, with SMAT, Società Metropolitana Acque Torino S.p.A..
The availability of the NB-IoT service on the whole of the national territory, made possible by TIM’s technological acceleration, will enable the commercial development of services starting with smart meters, which will permit not only real time monitoring of consumption and the telemanagement of gas, water and electricity transmission and distribution networks, but also district heating and environmental management.
Anticipating some of the capabilities that will be introduced by the future 5G networks, NB-IoT technology allows – through a standard specified for the usability of the Internet of Things – significant consumption savings with a battery duration for connected objects of over ten years and important increments in radio coverage up to seven times greater than GSM. Thanks to this latter characteristic, the NB-IoT update on the entire LTE network of TIM, which already covers over 97% of the Italian population, will make the service available by January throughout the country even in areas where coverage is not always the best, such as under stairs, manholes, basements, cellars or garages. Moreover, NB-IoT technology means the costs of connected objects can be optimized and ensures security and reliability typical of mobile networks on the licensed spectrum.
TIM contributes to the development of a complete and evolved ecosystem, testing the chipsets and smart objects of the main players to guarantee the market full interoperability with its network and making the Open Lab in Turin available to all partners in the sector to integrate these devices and make Internet of Things objects smart. TIM’s NB-IoT Open Lab, opened last November and unique in Italy, to date has involved 110 companies with 39 active collaborations, of which 12 validation activities have already been completed.
The NB-IoT represents the first and fundamental technical innovation of the network dedicated to the Internet of Things for which TIM, with Olivetti, is developing a rich portfolio of offers; this will be followed by other IoT solutions that will be able to fully exploit the speed and low latency of the LTE/5G networks, such as industrial automation or interconnection between cars and infrastructure, to enable the evolution towards autonomous driving scenarios, confirming the TIM group's leadership in digital innovation.
Rome, 13 October 2017