The entire premise of the IoT is increased efficiency.
As stated in this excellent blog post by Fraser Gibbs:
…the premise of [the] IoT, [is] that a connected world will offer gains through efficiency. The dollars spent on IoT are not new dollars, but dollars expected through returns on efficiency. These efficiencies must be ingrained in all parts of the ecosystem…
For the IoT, simplicity is the soil in which efficiency grows.
Simplicity drives efficiency in many different ways but most paths lead to operating at scale. Economies of scale occur when fixed costs are spread out over more units of goods. For wireless providers it means being able to serve many devices per infrastructure asset and being able to pass on the savings to the wireless subscribers. In this realm other LPWA solutions suffer pretty heavily; RPMA has thousands of times greater capacity per access point.
But simplicity also shows up (or doesn’t) when devices are designed and manufactured. When designing devices for a worldwide deployment, dreams of scalability quickly dissipate when using cellular’s latest candidates for LPWA wireless solutions. The cellular LPWA standards are still in the design stages and quite a while from anything close to deployment. But one thing is certain, for deploying a global application using LTE-M it will require supporting dozens of bands. Supporting dozens of bands, or even half a dozen, tosses all of the economies of scale right out the door.
The numbers needed to drive the costs down the curve are evaporated as soon as you start to consider having to design for that number of cellular bands.
RPMA in stark contrast requires designing for a single (costless) band. Not only do that number of bands make design difficult and inefficient, it makes cellular more expensive, as they pay to use each one of those licensed bands.
Also, cellular carriers each require expensive certification for each device on the network. This is a result of the complex nature of LTE. If any device on the network performs below the standard, it quickly degrades network performance. This is especially not tolerable for IoT devices because to cellular carriers, they are second class citizens as they are very low revenue generating. RPMA doesn’t require any costly certifications and doesn’t suffer performance degradation due to powerful but simpler design of RPMA.
The appropriate simplicity RPMA brings is how you reach the efficiencies the IoT promises. Learn more about how RPMA compares to cellular in our forthcoming RPMA to Cellular Comparison infographic.