For the Internet of Things to be successful, prices need to come down sharply, and eventually LPWAN connectivity should be possible with $1 to $2 modules, $5 to $10 development boards like we can get for WiFi today.
Cellular IoT hardware is likely to be a bit more expensive – even when using NB-IoT – but hardware prices have to come down to acceptable levels, and so is connectivity.
1NCE brings us in the right direction for the latter with a SIM card selling for 10 Euros offering 10-year of 2G/3G/NB-IoT connectivity (1 Euro per year) with 500MB data included. That’s about 140KB of data per day, which should be OK for applications like smart meters. There are no other fees, except if your device goes over the limit, but the company has not provided any pricing details for the extra data. The service will cover 30 countries in Europe.
The SIM cards will start selling in August 2018, and 1NCE only deals with companies, not individuals. You can register your interest on their website, if you want to get notified of the actual launch.
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