LTE for M2M communications or LTE-M is an LTE variant that caters for machine-to-machine communications.
LTE-M provides cellular connectivity for a wide range of end devices, nodes, sensors, appliances and equipment that make up the IoT network.
The LTE-M boasts low power consumption with extends the battery life of these objects (up to 5 years for a device running on AA batteries), easy deployment, high interoperability, lower costs and expanded coverage, making it suitable for deployment in the IoT networks.
LTE-M thus joins other M2M cellular technologies such as LoRa and SIGFOX.
LTE-M specifications were first covered in the 3GPP Rel 12 update with the aim of reducing the cost of M2M modems to 40% - 50% cheaper than regular LTE modems.
Additional features are planned in Rel 13, including reduction of bandwidth to 1.4 MHz for uplink and downlink and limiting transmit power to 20dBm.