Sony ALT1350 5G cellular IoT chip supports NTN connectivity, integrates sub-GHz and 2.4GHz radios

Sony ALT1350 is a new ultra-low-power 5G LPWA LTE-M/NB-IoT chip that supports Non-Terrestrial Networks (NTN) for satellite connectivity and also integrates sub-GHz and 2.4 GHz radios for short-range communication and improved efficiency.

The chip is comprised of an Arm Cortex-M4 microcontroller core as well as an Arm Cortex-M0+ always-on core for sensors and will be upgradable to 3GPP Release 17 to support higher bitrates for Cat-M1 (eMTC) and Cat-NB2 (NB-IoT). It also implements GNSS, cellular and wifi-based location, supports AI acceleration, and embeds a secure element for secure communication.

Sony ALT1350 5G IoT 802.15.4 chip

Sony ALT1350 specifications:

  • MCU cores
    • Arm cortex-M4 with 1MB NVRAM and 752KB RAM
    • Arm Cortex-M0+ low power always-on sensing hub
  • Memory & Storage I/F – Quad SPI flash and PSRAM
  • Wireless
    • Cellular
      • 3GPP Release 15, future proof to support 3GPP up to 17 through SW upgrade
      • CAT-M1: Up to 588 Kbps in DL, and 1119 Kbps in uplink (up to 1.2mbps with Release 17)
      • CAT-NB2: Up to 127 Kbps in DL, and 158 Kbps in uplink (up to 254kbps with Release 17)
      • 2nd generation iSIM targeting ELA5+ certification
      • LTE Frequency Band Support
        • HFDD (Half Duplex FDD) and TDD
        • OneSKU frequency range
          • Low Band: 617–960 MHz
          • Middle Band: 1700–2200 MHz
        • Supported Band List:
          • LTE-M: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, 28, 66, 71
          • NB-IoT: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18,19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 65, 66, 70, 71, 85
          • NTN: n255, n256
          • 410-466MHz (bands 31, 72, 73, 87, 88) can be supported using additional RF FE components.
    • Sub-GHz and 2.4 GHz 802.15.4 radios for short-range communication
  • Location
    • Intermittent LTE and GNSS (GPS/GLONASS) navigation for low-cost applications
    • Concurrent LTE and L1/L5 GNSS for tracking applications
    • Cellular network-based location
    • Integrated Wi-Fi SSID-based location
  • Network protocols – IPv4/IPv6 with TCP/UDP, PPP, FTP, HTTTP, TLS, HTTPS, SSL, DTSL, MQTT, CoAP, LWM2M
  • Host and peripheral interfaces
    • UART, SPI master and slave, I2C master and slave,PWM
    • PCM/I2S audio,
    • LED, GPIOs
    • USIM or eIUCC
    • Auxiliary ADC
    • Capture/compare timer
  • Security – Built-in Security Element
  • Power Management – Integrated PMU with Voltage Regulators and Real-Time clock (RTC)
  • Power Consumption – “optimized standby mode (eDRX) reduces power consumption by 80% when compared to the current generation and by 85% when using it to send short messages”
  • Temperature Range – -40 to +85°C

Designed by Sony Semiconductor Israel, previously known as Altair Semiconductor, the chip aims to provide a hybrid solution with cellular, location, and short-range connectivity for smart meters, smart cities, trackers, connected health devices, and more.

Various optimizations and multiple radios enable a much lower power consumption of up to 85% when sending short messages with the company also claiming 4 times longer battery life for a typical device. The 802.15.4 radio also enables protocols such as Wi-Sun, U-Bus Air, and wM-Bus, as well as point-to-point and mesh technologies.

The Sony ALT1350 is currently sampling to “lead customers” and is expected to become commercially available during 2023. More details may be found on the product page.

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5 Comments
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andelf
andelf
4 days ago

Seems like a perfect gateway platform. I wonder how much more expensive than nrf9160 it will be.

Georgi Angelov
Georgi Angelov
4 days ago

5G ?!?

Philipp Blum
Philipp Blum
3 days ago

I would love to know the price for that chip. Agreed so much. Interesting Gateway chip.

Marcin Dąbrowski
2 days ago

Looks just as promising as Spresense, I expect it to be shelved the same way.

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