Editor’s Pick

Sequans Introduces New 4G/5G Cellular IoT Modules Based on its Second-Generation Cat 1 Calliope 2 Chip

Ideal for IoT applications requiring support for voice and throughput higher than LTE-M.

Brings significant cost improvement and a 2X power saving
Enables battery-powered Cat 1 IoT devices

Ubiquitous Cat 1 network availability enables global deployment
For alarms, trackers, payment terminals, cameras, and wearables, including speakers and headphones
Supports flexible SIM management for ieUICC, eUICC, or legacy UICC

Sequans Communications S.A. today announced availability of a new series of Cat 1 IoT modules based on its second generation, LTE Cat 1bis chip, Calliope 2.

The new Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are low-cost, low-power, IoT-optimized solutions that support VoLTE and throughput higher than LTE-M for applications including wearables and hearables with music streaming; smart city/smart home IoT devices such as security cameras, alarm panels, and utility meters; and data aggregators that can require throughput up to several megabits per second. Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are optimized to support three regional variants covering North America, Japan, and Europe.

Advancements in Sequans’ Calliope 2 chip technology remove the cost and power consumption barriers that have thus far limited widespread adoption of Cat 1 for IoT. These advancements include 1) higher integration for lower cost, 2) lower power consumption in both active and power-saving modes, near the level of LTE-M, thus extending the battery life of Cat 1 devices significantly, and 3) advanced signal processing techniques that provide superior radio performance. LTE Cat 1 is available worldwide on all cellular networks, including those areas where LTE-M and NB-IoT are not, making it ideal for IoT companies wishing to deploy products globally.

“Cat 1 is a truly universal IoT solution,” said Georges Karam, Sequans CEO.

“With our new Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules, we have made Cat 1 highly suitable for IoT so that it can now support a much wider variety of IoT use cases, including those that need voice.”

“We’ve reduced the cost and lowered the power consumption by applying the power-saving techniques of LTE-M and NB-IoT, and we’ve embedded high-level, on-chip security with iSIM support—all of which combine to make our Calliope 2 modules truly future-proof and able to support the evolution from 4G to 5G for many years to come.”

“We are proud of our partnership with Sequans that expands our cellular IoT module offering that includes RYZ014A alongside our MCUs with 4G cellular connectivity based on Sequans proven Monarch Cat-M1/NB-IoT LTE platform,” said Roger Wendelken, SVP, head of MCU Business, IoT and Infrastructure Business Unit at Renesas. “Therefore, we are excited about Sequans’s Calliope 2 Cat 1 platform that supports IoT use cases demanding higher bandwidth, greater mobility, and lower latency.”

“There is an explosion in demand for Cat 1 technology around the world, and even more specifically for the new Cat 1bis technology, increasing the overall LTE Cat 1 market from 132 million units in 2021 to an estimated 200 million units in 2025,” said Takeshi Niwa, marketing analyst, TSR. “The great success of Cat 1bis in China, notably in the utility segment, demonstrates the accelerated adoption and deployment of this IoT-focused LTE category, driven by its lower cost compared to first-generation Cat 1 and also by the shutdown of legacy 2G and 3G networks. The availability of platforms like Sequans’ Calliope 2 that brings a newer generation of optimized Cat 1 technology into the market will extend this rapid growth to other countries including Japan and the United States.”

Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are 5G-ready and compliant with the 3GPP Release 15 massive IoT standard. User application software and interfaces are compatible with Sequans’ Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform, allowing easy migration among Cat 1, LTE-M, and NB-IoT massive IoT technologies.

Calliope 2 GC02S1 Module Features:

Supports 3GPP Release 14/15, including PSM and eDRX for ultra-low power consumption
Cost-effective support for Cat 1bis data rate: up to 10 Mbps DL and 5 Mbps UL
Ultra-small “S1” LGA package
Power supply supports 3.1V-5.5V
Supports VoLTE and high-quality voice
Supports external SIM and eSIM as well as integrated SIM and integrated eSIM
Common Criteria (CC) EAL5+ security for iSIM
Compatible with Sequans Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform for easy migration among Cat 1, LTE-M, Cat NB1/NB2

“Sequans pioneered Cat 1 technology for IoT and has always recognized its value,” said Karam. “We are the only cellular IoT connectivity solutions provider with a strategic product roadmap for Cat 1. Our Calliope 2 chip platform and GC02S1 modules are designed with a clear eye on its particular value for IoT, especially now that 2G and 3G networks are being shut down and 5G is on the horizon.”

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