IoT development ecosystem gets boost with new Sequans IoT chipset

Integrated RF front end and certification from operators like Verizon and AT&T creates powerful development platform

The internet of things (IoT) space is a dynamic market that lends itself to disruption given the relatively low-cost and collaborative development community. To take advantage of the myriad ideas coming out of developers, operators are taking an end-to-end approach by packaging development tools including APIs, templates, chipsets and other systems with network connectivity and management platform service offerings.

To facilitate quick development and testing, operators certify particular components and devices for seamless connectivity to a cellular IoT network. French chipmaker Sequans mirrors the end-to-end approach operators use in its products. The latest version of Sequans’ Monarch LTE-M/NB-IoT chip has an integrated RF front end, developed in partnership with Skyworks in what the company calls “the smallest, turnkey connectivity engine” compliant with 3GPP LTE standards. The Monarch SiP is pre-certified by Verizon.

Sequans CEO Georges Karam called the Monarch SiP “one of the most critical LTE engines for IoT available in the world today. Our comprehensive and powerful module incorporates every major component needed to enable the widespread deployment of LTE devices on any band, in an extremely small and think package. This new form factor represents a truly ground-breaking architecture for a broad range of applications.”

The Monarch SiP measures 8.8 mm x 10.8 mm x 0.95mm. Verizon is peddling the chip through its Open Development community . Open Development is Verizon’s offering for IoT developers and includes access to approved modules, data pricing plans, dev kits and other resources.

AT&T also has a developer ecosystem that includes pre-approved modules and other hardware, network connectivity and its IoT platform offering. The chief Verizon rival also pre-certified the new Monarch SiP. “This is an exciting product for IoT device designers, especially for wearable IoT devices in need of compact solutions, AT&T VP of Internet of Things Solutions Cameron Coursey said in a statement. Coursey said the new SiP “brings together the technologies of two industry leaders to give AT&T’s IoT customers a total solution for launching their IoT devices on AT&T’s network as quickly as possible.”

Reprinted with permission from Enterprise IoT Insights May 21, 2018.