Internet of Things (IoT) device manufacturers and mobile network operators are looking at alternatives to GPS to provide wide area positioning. Device manufacturers seek to leverage the benefits of reduced battery consumption and availability of location information indoors, while MNOs look to provide an additional value added services as part of their IoT offerings. Cellular location as a service will enable carriers to monetize this data and provide new services in the future including intelligent traffic management and a sharing economy. The value proposition of IoT devices can also be increased by providing real-time location information combined with traditional sensor information.
This report provides an in-depth comparison of wide area networks (WAN) technologies including LTE, NB-IoT, Sigfox, and LoRa and how they can be used for geolocation purposes to address different use cases including asset tracking, people and pet tracking, fleet management, autonomous vehicles, UAVs, location-based cloud services, smart manufacturing, and smart bicycles. The competitive landscape is also assessed for wide area network positioning, with company profiles from key players within the value chain. This includes IC vendors, module vendors, and carrier location platform providers. A number of carrier initiatives are also discussed, providing the reader with a guide to what major players are doing to address the various use cases and technologies presented in the report.