LTEm1 LTE CAT-M1 and NB-IOT embedded modem for IoT projects and products, with EGPRS, GNSS, TCP/UDP/SSL and MQTT.Designed by LooUQ in United States of America
The LTEm1 is an LTE cellular modem, purpose built for machine-to-machine (M2M) communications using either LTE CAT-M1, NB-IOT, or EGPRS networks. It enables far-reaching IoT applications that are n...Read More…
The LTEm1 is an LTE cellular modem, purpose built for machine-to-machine (M2M) communications using either LTE CAT-M1, NB-IOT, or EGPRS networks. It enables far-reaching IoT applications that are not tethered by WiFi or Bluetooth distance limits. The LTEm1's unique set of features include integrated GPS, combined with its supporting software set it apart. With the LTEm1, your project can go anywhere and transmit remote sensor data back to you in real-time.
LTEM1 support is available 7x24 via our online LooUQ Answers Center. Priority support is optionally available. LooUQ also offers data plans and LooUQ Cloud platform integrated service plans. Please contact us of more information.
LooUQ just completed our first production manufacturing run for a commercial customer and have devices ready for sale. But we want to go farther, much farther. We want to make the LTEm1 available to makers, increase our production and build economies of scale. We have fully tested the LTEm1 with Hologram and initial testing with two additional mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) looks promising. If you are working on product idea, the LTEm1 is a Verizon certified and T-Mobile registered device and LooUQ can help you productize your idea.
The software driver supporting the LTEm1 is entirely open-source and located on our GitHub. The UXplor adapters that allow for the LTEm1 to connect to various development environments such as the (Adafruit) Feather form-factor, the Raspberry PI, and our UXplor Breakout (breadboarding) are open hardware.
Beyond the documentation there is a "tests" folder in the source repository on GitHub. These are in increasing modem capability and were all developed on the LTEm1 UXplor-Feather evaluation kit. The sockets and MQTT tests also serve as demo\example source. - The sockets test is configured to use Packet Sender from NagleCode as a socket host. - The MQTT test connects to Azure IoTHub as its host. The IoTHub test strings for ID and secret are previously used values, you can get a free Microsoft Azure account if you want to test with IoTHub.
To make it easy to add the LTEm1 to your development lab there are three adapter boards. Each provides power for the LTEm1 modem and basic connectivity to a host MCU system. Below is a description for each.
The LTEm1 UXplor-Feather is a full-featured evaluation board with a Adafruit Feather M0 Express included, the Feather and a LiPo battery provides the power (LiPo battery not included). The LTEm1 is fully wired up to the Feather and the Feather's I/O is broken out around a prototyping area, there is also a Qwiic port. The UXplor-Feather can be optionally powered by an external 6-30 volt power source (AC or DC), or by 6V solar cell. Both of these options will be available in Nov 2020.
The LTEm1 UXplor-Breakout is a simple breadboard compatible breakout board with a LiPo battery charger and connectivity from the LTEm1 modem and the breadboard header (supplied, unsoldered).
Finally, the LTEm1 UXplor-RPi is a "hat-like" adapter for the Raspberry PI. The UXplor-RPi regulates the Pi's 5V supply to power the LTEm1. Note that the LTEm1c driver is not currently compatible with the RPi (not a kernel mode driver). To communicate with the LTEm1 the R-Pi uses shell communication scripts over one of the Pi's USB ports connected to the micro-USB port on the LTEm1 modem (USB cable is not included).
Today for development and personal use I recommended Hologram SIMs. These have been tested for months without any issues. LooUQ has also been testing EMnify with good results so far (the LTEm1 was configured for LTE CAT-M1 for most of these tests). These are both MNVO network operators. If your considering the LTEm1 for embedding in a product, please contact us at email@example.com for options with US prime network on-boarding.
Greg Terrell (LooUQ CEO) worked for over 30 years engineering communications networks and integrating information systems before in 2016 founding LooUQ, originally as an IoT software company. Greg arrived at the idea of creating the LTEm1 in 2018 to complement LooUQ's cloud offering and started working on its design in collaboration with Jensen Miller. Jensen was an intern at LooUQ, pursuing his B.S. in Computer Engineering at Michigan State University. We wanted to take advantage of the next generation of M2M (machine-to-machine) communications, realizing LTE would become mainstream for M2M and 2G/3G would be sunsetting. After a couple months working on documenting use cases and evaluating modules, we selected the Quectel BG96 to be module at the heart of the LTEm1.
Having the big decisions behind us, Greg worked on the hardware, Jensen built the foundations for the software to support the LTEm1. As we improved the design and created successive prototypes, by summer 2018 we had our release candidate devices from the manufacturer for final testing.
Greg traveled to Verizon’s lab in New Jersey for network certification in August of 2018. Since receiving our Verizon certification and throughout 2019 we worked on improving the LTEm1 software and working with commercial customers. The LTEm1 is at the heart of a couple commercial products, but I believe there are new unrealized ideas for smart, connected things that will benefit our world. To help further this idea, I have now decided to open the LTEm1 up to the “maker” community and here we are at Tindie.
In 2020, Jensen has moved on to a career at a major telecommunications company headquartered in Southern California and Greg has re-sharpened his software development knowledge to reauthor the LTEm1 driver software in C99.
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