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Machine to Machine Communication (M2M)

(US Navy Blue Angels, San Francisco Fleet Week - Jeff M. Wang)


Machine to Machine Communication (M2M)


- The Three Key Features of 5G defined By the 3GPP

The following three key features of 5G that are outlined in the 3GPP Release 15 specification are: 


  • Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), which involves capacity enhancements; 
  • Ultra-Reliable Low Latency Communications (URLLC), which has exacting requirements on latency and reliability; and 
  • Massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC), which provides connections to large numbers of devices that intermittently transmit small amounts of traffic.


- M2M and IoT

Machine to Machine Communication (M2M) is a modality of communication between machines or devices without any human interaction or control. These devices can speak to one another using either wired or wireless data transmission, with wireless M2M in particular becoming a growing field with numerous Internet of Things (IoT) applications being added. M2M is able to utilize a variety of wireless protocols, technologies and standards including: Bluetooth, 2G, 3G, 802.15.4, 6LoWPAN, LoRA and LTE among others. Wireless networking standards in M2M should be chosen according to the device’s specification and the environment in which it will be used.

The advent of IoT has accelerated development of novel and niche M2M module with their attendant wireless gateways, routers and fixed IP addressing. This has meant that M2M now utilizes a variety of wireless networks for data transmission and multiple devices can connected for simultaneous communication rather than the original point-to-point transfer. The adaptation and integration of automation to M2M applications has led to even more efficient information exchange.


Machine-Type Communication (MTC) and Wireless 5G


- Massive IoT

A machine-to-machine application of 5G is often referred to as massive IoT. These machine-type communications will require low-power and low-data-rate capabilities, supporting a large number of connections. 5G deployment in the mission-critical arena, including some industrial, robotic, medical, and automotive applications that require ultra-reliable and extremely low latency capabilities, is likely to take the longest. The mission-critical use cases depend on significant technical innovations, Most of the world’s telecoms are in rough alignment on how to use available spectrum for 5G networks, and wireless telecoms need it to develop new markets in the industrial, automotive, smart city, and commercial spaces.


- mNTC and uMTC

Machine-type communications (MTC) are expected to play an essential role within 5G systems. MTC has been further classified into "massive Machine-Type Communication" (mMTC) and "ultra-reliable Machine-Type Communication" (uMTC). While mMTC is about wireless connectivity to tens of billions of machine-type terminals, uMTC is about availability, low latency, and high reliability. The main challenge in mMTC is scalable and efficient connectivity for a massive number of devices sending very short packets, which is not done adequately in cellular systems designed for human-type communications. Furthermore, mMTC solutions need to enable wide area coverage and deep indoor penetration while having low cost and being energy efficient.

This web of connectivity will enable maintenance of the infrastructure and manufacturing systems, as well as robust flow control, adjustment and fine tuning of operating parameters to respond to real time fluctuations in the environment and processes, as they occur. Considering the current growth of the Internet and the arrival of Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) in 5G, transmitting that IoT data will require 5G wireless capacity that is three orders of magnitude greater than the existing 4G networks to avoid overloading the network. 



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