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BT launches IoT national roaming network

UK’s leading telco switches on dedicated internet of things frameworks for businesses across the UK, allowing them to keep smart devices connected wherever they are, using both its own EE network and those of other MNOs, where required

In what the UK’s leading telco says will amount to a major boost for businesses – and an act that is poised to shake up the business-to-business (B2B) internet of things (IoT) market, keeping smart devices connected wherever they are – BT today switched on its IoT national roaming SIMs for businesses across the UK, allowing them to keep smart devices permanently connected regardless of location.

The roll-out of the service is designed to benefit courier and delivery companies in particular, giving them reliable, fast network access no matter where they are – in cities, rural areas or by the coast. BT said IoT national roaming ensures that devices can continue performing to a high standard even in the harshest, most remote conditions, thanks to the enterprise-grade IoT SIMs, which offer reliable, fast connectivity. 

The service is said to help users such as drivers and delivery workers improve accuracy and efficiency by giving them access to important information in real time. An example of this would be providing visibility of fuel efficiency, changes to a delivery schedule and cold chain management so temperatures can be constantly monitored on a refrigerated vehicle.

Able to operate via LPWAN 2G, 4G and 5G networks, as well as 3G before these are switched off by major operators across the UK, the IoT national roaming SIMs are designed to allow smart devices to connect to any mobile network, ensuring they stay connected while on the move or in remote locations. In addition to improved connectivity, the IoT national roaming service will offer a secure management portal with full security measures to protect important data and help businesses keep track of their smart devices.

BT’s IoT national roaming SIMs will have a primary connection to the BT Group-owned EE mobile network, which recently announced the arrival of 5G to more than 500 new, predominantly rural, locations, bringing the total number of UK cities, towns and villages where customers can access the service to over 1,000. At the same time, EE’s 4G network coverage is on track to reach 90% of the UK’s geographic landmass by the mid-2020s. 

The SIMs can also connect to multiple other major UK networks, helping to keep smart devices online. BT is offering the product at the same price as its existing pay-as-you-use IoT SIM service so that businesses only pay for the data they use rather than risking under-utilising data on a fixed rate.

“Businesses across the UK are increasingly understanding the benefits of using IoT devices in running their operations. And now, with the unveiling of our IoT national roaming SIMs, we’re making sure those connections stay strong no matter where business takes you,” commented Marc Overton, managing director of Division X at BT.

“Whether in the heart of a bustling city or out in the countryside, our solution ensures data is transmitted quickly and reliably. We’re excited to help both our existing and new customers fully harness the power of their smart devices with lightning-fast mobile connectivity,” he said.

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