As reported, Deutsche Telekom will start its spin-off Deutsche Telekom IoT on July 1. Together with the technology and chip supplier Qualcomm Technologies, Quectel, a provider of solutions with satellite navigation (GNSS = Global navigation Satellite Systems) and Redtea Mobile (a provider of globally usable data tariffs for dual SIM telephones) integrated system presented with the “nuSIM”. nuSIM is a special SIM card permanently integrated in the device for the Internet of Things (IoT). It replaces the conventional mechanical SIM card in the end device because mechanical contacts could fail and the card and reader slot need space. This solution makes nuSIM available for the first time for a Qualcomm chipset.
The nuSIM was specially developed by Deutsche Telekom for the Internet of Things (IoT) and integrated directly into the modem chip.
Graphics: Deutsche Telekom / T-Systems
“The nuSIM initiative was launched at the beginning of last year by Deutsche Telekom. It met with a very positive response in the global IoT industry,” said Rami Avidan, who is responsible for IoT business at Telekom. “The conception phase is now behind us. We are looking forward to the first products from our partners. Now the cost and design advantages are tangible for our customers.”
The joint solution was developed on the basis of Telekom’s open nuSIM specification. It consists of a NuSIM operating system from Redtea Mobile in a Quectel BG95-M3 module with an integrated Qualcomm® 9205 LTE modem.
Important: security and simplicity
Since this is about values, the data must be as secure as possible. “Qualcomm Technologies uses its Trusted Execution Environment (QTEE) to enable nuSIM on the Qualcomm 9205 LTE modem. The nuSIM function is integrated directly into the chipset. This eliminates the usual effort for logistics, warehousing and delivery of a conventional SIM We save space on the printed circuit board and also in the IoT device. This also offers more security for the operator profiles, which can be downloaded anywhere on the device, “said Hamid-Reza Nazeman, from Qualcomm Germany, explaining the project.
“We developed the nuSIM operating system in accordance with Deutsche Telekom’s open nuSIM specification,” adds Xiaodong Guo from Redtea Mobile. “We receive encrypted nuSIM profiles and can process them securely. As a result, we have the function of classic SIM.”
“Quectel Wireless Solutions integrated the Qualcomm 9205 LTE modem and the nuSIM software into our BG95-M3 LTE Cat M1 / Cat NB2 / EGPRS module to create a product with extremely low power consumption,” emphasizes Dominikus Hierl, Quectel Wireless . “The result is suitable for many IoT applications, such as wireless cash register systems (POS), smart metering (measured value transmission), tracking (tracking) or wearable devices (functional clothing or fitness bracelets, watches, etc.)”.
The advantages of nuSIM
nuSIM was specially developed for the IoT market and makes the usual SIM card superfluous, because the SIM function is integrated in the chipset. It works similarly to the eSIM. This saves electricity and costs. The data of the mobile operator are added in a secure process during module or device manufacture. The end customer gets instant connectivity without additional steps. The commercial availability of nuSIM is planned for 2020.
Change of provider possible?
What is not further explained in the press release is the question of whether SIM profiles can also be loaded with providers competing with Telekom or whether the publisher of nuSIM has a “veto right” here. With the eSIM specified by the GSMA organization, this is provided by design and in principle allows a much faster provider change here if the current tariff or the offered network (supply) does not please.
However, since such iOT SIM cards are often used across borders and worldwide, there is already a vested interest in always offering customers the most attractive tariff or a large number of different locally usable networks. In some cases, foreign SIM codes are even used deliberately in Germany to enable different networks to be used at home.
Telekom invites partners
Telekom emphasizes that the open specification guarantees quality and interoperability and invites “other interested parties” to join the nuSIM ecosystem.
Read how our eSIM works for “regular” telephony and data customers in our guide.