Towards June 2017, China Telecom will deploy narrow-band IoT (NB-IoT) nationwide using its 800MHz band, announced the operator. The 800MHz band was previously used for CDMA service.
For the purpose, the service provider is upgrading its 4G network using two-carrier aggregation on the 1.8GHz and 2.1GHz band. It will also reform the 800MHz band for LTE services. At the Mobile Terminal Technology Forum in Guangzhou, China Telecom also revealed that it targets to launch Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) before the end 2017.
For the Internet-of-Things initiative, China Telecom had allocated direct module subsidies of CNY200 million along with a marketing budget of CNY200 million. China Telecom is country’s smallest mobile player. It has nearly 224 million connections.
Meanwhile, another operator China Unicom is also planning for large-scale narrow-band IoT deployment. The operator is planning to conduct field trials in five cities this year. Once the trials are successful, the company will start the commercial deployment by the end of 2016. It plans for nationwide coverage by 2018.