Major carriers are rolling out LTE networks worldwide at an accelerated pace, considering the sunset of their existing 2G and 3G networks. Devices that are expected to operate for years to come need to incorporate LTE technology in order to ensure longevity.
The portfolio consists of multi-mode, multi-carrier and of LTE-only modules specific for large North American carriers. All modules provide long-term LTE technology at lower speeds, ideal for industrial and connected-car applications (10Mb/s download, 5Mb/s upload), at a significantly lower cost than typical LTE Cat. 4 modules. All modules operate from -40°C to +85°C, making them suitable for demanding industrial and automotive devices. The unique combination of performance and versatility makes these modules suited for M2M applications, such as telematics and smart metering, as well as security and surveillance systems with the need for Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE).
The u-blox LTE Cat. 1 module portfolio includes the following variants:
* TOBY-R201 (LTE bands 2, 4, 13, 17 and HSPA bands 2, 5) is a multi-mode, multi-carrier LTE Cat. 1 module with HSPA fallback for North America. Its form factor in a 24.8 x 35.6 mm2 LGA package is the same as the TOBY-L2 Cat. 4 modules designed for applications requiring high data rates. The first samples will be available in October 2015.
* LARA-R200 (LTE bands 4, 13) and LARA-R202 (LTE bands 2, 4, 17) are LTE Cat. 1 modules for the largest North American carriers, available in a compact 22.0 x 27.5 mm2 LGA form factor, and fit on the nested design pads compatible with other u-blox form factors. The first samples will be available in early 2016.
Additional variants for Europe and APAC are planned.
The modules also follow the u-blox 'nested design' philosophy to maintain form factor and software continuity. This allows customers to easily upgrade their products with each new generation of u-blox wireless modules without having to change the PCB designs. It allows for easy migration contributing to maximized investment, simplified logistics and drastically reduced time-to-market.
All the modules are expected to be certified soon by major US and Canadian mobile carriers.