ST87M01 NB-IoT & GNSS module targets global cellular IoT deployments, asset tracking applications

STMicro ST87M01 is a compact, low-power, programmable LTE Cat NB2 (NB-IoT) industrial cellular module with GNSS geo-location capability for “massive IoT” deployments and asset tracking applications.

STMicro already had several LPWAN solutions such as the STM32WL LoRa SoC, a Wi-SUN transceiver, a few SigFox chips, and a bunch of proprietary sub-GHz chips, but no cellular IoT solutions of their own although the STM32 microcontroller can be found in many third-party solutions. The ST87M01 NB-IoT and GNSS module changes that, so let’s have a closer look.

STMicro ST87M01 NB-IoT module

ST87M01 NB-IoT module specifications:

  • Cellular
    • LTE, Category NB2, Release 15
    • Worldwide regional bands coverage
    • Single-tone / Multi-tone / Extended TBS and 2 HARQ
    • Up to DL: 127 kbps, UL: 159 kbps
    • eDRX and PSM support
    • Up to +23 dBm power output
    • Optional ST4SIM embedded SIM (eSIM) GSMA compliant with an additional Secure Element
  • GNSS capability
  • Expansion – Multiple I/F and GPIO
  • Host communication – standardized 3GPP AT commands, along with ST enhanced AT commands
  • Low-power mode < 2 uA
  • Dimensions – 12.8×10.6mm LGA package
  • Temperature Range – -40°C to +85℃

ST87M01

Technical details are limited and documentation is nonexistent since the ST87M01 was announced before Embedded World 2023 and is still at the preview stage. STMicro says the module and all the internal ICs are entirely conceived, designed, and industrialized by the company. The chip embeds the most common IoT internet protocols including IPv6, TCP/UDP, CoAP/LWM2M, MQTT, HTTP/HTTPS and TLS/DTLS, and supports differential FOTA updates. It can be used as a standalone chip or connected to a host microcontroller and controlled with AT commands.

With a life cycle of at least 15 years, the ST87M01 will be found in smart metering, smart grid, smart building, smart city, and smart infrastructure applications, as well as industrial condition monitoring and factory automation, smart agriculture, and environmental monitoring. GNNS support also makes it suitable for tracking applications such as locating pets, children, and elders, safety monitoring for remote workers, asset tracking for equipment such as power tools, and intelligent logistics.

STMicroelectronics says the ST87M01 is in sampling now to “major customers” around the world, but pricing is not public and samples must be requested from sales offices at this time. A few more details may be found on the product page and press release.

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