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What is LTE Category 1 (Cat 1) Technology?

Connected devices are growing by the millions every day, which makes IoT a huge industry. By 2020, 30 billion IoT-connected devices are expected, with 75 billion by 2025, producing $300 billion in revenues for IoT suppliers alone. Self-driving cars, smart homes, and connected cities are going to change the way we work, live, and play. Different IoT applications use various technologies to connect. Although 2G is still very appealing in underdeveloped countries because of its availability, the technology is no longer appropriate for rich countries since it is being phased out. Even though there is no ideal solution for every application, LTE CAT-1, with its great capabilities, is a brilliant choice for many.

What is LTE (Long Term Evolution) Cat 1?

LTE Cat 1 is a new wireless standard that provides similar benefits to WiFi while improving speed, range, and reliability. In contrast to WiFi, LTE has a more secure network. This makes it suitable for industrial environments where WiFi may not be reliable or secure.

Why is LTE Cat 1 a good choice for IoT?

Today, LTE Cat 1 is one of the best wireless technologies for IoT devices. Over the next few years, most 3G networks will disappear, while 2G will cease to exist by 2025. For all those IoT-linked objects in the field that require a long-term upgrade from 2G and 3G technologies. LTE Cat 1 provides more bandwidth, faster speed, and higher reliability, making it the ideal fit for IoT applications. LTE Cat 1 technology supports Machine-to-Machine (M2M) IoT applications. Cat 1 has a downlink speed of 10 Mbit/s and a 5 Mbit/s uplink. Cat 1 LTE consumes less power and offers extended idle and sleep modes. Besides being cost-effective, LTE Cat 1 supports Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and data streaming.

The LTE Cat 1 network has lower latency (50–100 ms). LTE Cat 1 is, therefore, a good option for data streaming, compared to LTE Cat M1 or NB-IoT. The LTE Cat 1’s ability to communicate via Voice over LTE (VoLTE) offers value to the end application. However, greater data speeds and dual antenna in LTE Cat 1 also increase power consumption.

CAT-1 vs. NB-IoT: Which is Better?

Narrowband-IoT (NB-IoT) has been widely adopted by mobile network operators and original design manufacturers because it provides improved indoor coverage, supports large numbers of low throughput networks for IoT. NB-IoT has high sensitivity, ultra-low device cost, lower power consumption, and optimized network architecture.

However, NB-IoT is not considered to be a direct competitor of CAT-1. NB-IoT is suitable for stationary applications or low-speed mobility applications such as smart meters and smoke detectors. In immobile applications, LTE CAT-1 is deemed excessive, whereas it provides full mobility for mobile IoT devices that require constant communication, such as vehicle dash cams.

What are the advantages of LTE Cat 1?

LTE Cat 1 sends data wirelessly without an internet connection. It works with any Wi-Fi-enabled device and has a better range than Wi-Fi. Cat 1 is also faster, which will be very beneficial in many IoT situations.

Telematics and Asset tracking

LTE Cat 1 provides full mobility for IoT devices that require constant communication when moving, such as vehicle dashcam, people walking or jogging in a park, or trucks on the road. Using cellular LTE coverage, a fleet's cargo assets can be tracked constantly. Fleet management, Usage-Based Insurance (UBI), stolen vehicle tracking and recovery (SVT/SVR), and dash cameras are examples of automobile telematics applications that require constant data communication in mobility.

Seamless connectivity

LTE Cat 1 is widely used throughout the world, allowing for smooth roaming across borders.

VoLTE capability

LTE Cat 1 supports Voice over LTE (VoLTE) to provide a high-quality conversational voice. VoLTE aids devices with two-way voice communication, such as alarm panels in smart homes, connected elevators, personal emergency response systems with the lonely individuals.

Many connected health applications, such as in-patient and outpatient monitoring, and mobile medical alert systems, benefit from VoLTE. VoLTE allows seniors and individuals with medical needs to communicate directly with a service center or a family member.


LTE Cat-1 reuses existing commercial networks without needing to upgrade infrastructure.

Industrial IoT (IIoT)

LTE Cat 1 technology provides adequate data throughput and minimal latency for a variety of industrial applications, including process monitoring, process control, safe worker monitoring, and electricity metering.


LTE Cat-1 is the only fully working cellular IoT option at the time, and it represents an early push to connect IoT devices to existing LTE networks. LTE Cat 1 offers faster download and upload speeds, as well as more capacity per user, lower latency, and greater dependability. Some of the industries that benefit from enhanced efficiency include fleet management, usage-based insurance (UBI), vending machines, and voice-enabled healthcare IoT devices. It's available all around the world and makes roaming a breeze.

Cheers, Regami Solutions


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