Huawei and Vodafone building world's first NB-IoT Open Lab

Telecommunications company Vodafone, and the Chinese tech giant Huawei are teaming up to create the world’s first Narrowband Internet of Things Open Lab (NB-IoT).

In a press release following the announcement, the two companies have said the lab will fuel ‘strategic technology innovation’ and promote the entire NB-IoT ecosystem. With the proper development environment, developers can increase the efficiency of future NB-IoT devices.

“We’re delighted to be partnering with Huawei in the creation of this new Open Lab facility for NB-IoT. As the technology moves towards commercial deployment in early 2017, it’s essential that we start building a strong ecosystem with developers and solution providers,” said Luke Ibbetson, Vodafone Group R&D Director and Chairman of the NB-IoT Forum.

With NB-IoT technology, the IoT will be more efficient as it will become easier to connect to objects that require a longer battery life, or are located in remote and hard-to-reach areas. The two companies have said the technology is the answer for enterprise applications in areas from utility meters to asset-tracking. First devices are expected before the end of the year.

David Wang, President of Wireless Product Line at Huawei, said: “This agreement builds on Huawei’s existing strong relationships with Vodafone and our joint commitment to lead the development of NB-IoT technology and its eco-system. Having successfully gained industry recognition, we will now continue to work closely with Vodafone to build a joint roadmap for the continuous evolution of the NB-IoT Open Lab to create innovative solutions to build a better connected world.”