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You see that this way power consumption can be linked to the network parameters. EE Times Europe: What expectations does Rohde & Schwarz have regarding the IoT business market? Can you share some figures? Köpp: We see, of course, that the industry is getting ready for IoT, and are aware of these well-known figures of 50 billion connected devices. We also know that the total available market in 2020 is estimated to be around $800 billion. These are enormous abstract numbers that help to understand that communications technologies are being used in more and more industry fields and applications. With our test and measurement competence, we can contribute to make these new applications become reality. Two examples of application-specific markets are eCall and car-to- X. We are very active in these markets, and of course we also cover the cellular technologies with all the test cases associated with them. EE Times Europe: Which RF technologies do you think will prevail in IoT in the long run? Meik Kottkamp: There won’t be one single RF technology to cover all requirements. Based on the requests we receive for test equipment, we see that the range of technologies is currently expanding at a rapid pace. And so is the range of applications. Customer requests show us that set-top box vendors and cable network operators are interested in entering the home automation markets and that they plan to use existing remote control solutions for this purpose. But it is hard to judge what will prevail in the future, since there are lots of alternatives – ZigBee, Bluetooth low energy and, of course, Wi-Fi. In addition, there are significant regional differences, for example when it comes to the future usage of TV white space. Our standard solutions enable users to solve a very broad range of measurement challenges. For specific customer requirements, it is necessary to map out multiple relevant aspects – such as how big the market is and who will really need this solution. EE Times Europe: A technology that already has been hyped a lot is NFC. But it seems like the hype has now quieted down. Based on the demand for test equipment, can you perhaps determine if this technology has a chance to survive? Köpp: I don’t believe that NFC is doomed to fail. Although it has not yet found widespread acceptance in Europe, it is rather popular in Asia, and large credit card organizations there are about to upgrade their card terminals with NFC. Worldwide there are 275 million NFC-enabled handsets in use, and Apple’s new iPhone 6 also supports NFC. So the technology is here, but perhaps it is not yet widely utilized. We are aware of new developments Insights of a changing industry: Jörg Köpp (left), and Meik Kottkamp from Rohde & Schwarz. in the medical domain that involve NFC – for example to enable communications with cardiac pacemakers and other implants. The range of potential applications is huge, and it is constantly growing. We also have test solutions for NFC in our portfolio and see steady demand for them. EE Times Europe: How is the situation in 5G networks? It is expected that this technology will take the interests of IoT into account – for example by supporting decentralized network structures. Where does the development of 5G technologies stand today? Kottkamp: The 5G developments reflect many requirements from IoT. While cellular networks – 2G, 3G, 4G – were being developed, the discussion widely focused on data rates and bandwidth. Among the requirements we see today are very short latencies and long battery life, as well as the need to have many more devices connected without causing overload scenarios. All these requirements originate from IoT and can be defined at the 5G network level. A complete list of requirements has not yet been defined, but 5G is currently a very large research topic, also at the EU level. We expect the results of these research activities to be included in the standardization process. But this is still some time away. If we assume that 5G will be ready for commercialization by 2020, we should anticipate that the specs will be finalized around 2018. Topics currently under discussion are individual technology components like large bandwidths, high frequencies and new, light protocol structures to enable fast access times and long battery life. Some of these topics are discussed in the LTE camp as well, such as power saving and device-to-device communication. Plus, the optimization of LTE is also determined by M2M and IoT requirements. www.electronics-eetimes.com Electronic Engineering Times Europe December 2014 9


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