Rohde & Schwarz (R&S) has launched a new product for NB-IoT coverage measurement. The new NB-IoT coverage measurement solution is based on the field-proven R&S ROMES drive test software for measuring network quality with scanners and test mobiles in all mobile technologies. In tandem with the R&S TSMW, TSMA and TSME scanners, R&S ROMES offers the first LTE/NB-IoT coverage measurement solution that measures true NB-IoT network coverage.

According to the company, the NB-IoT radio interface is less complex than legacy LTE. NB-IoT is a half-duplex mode access, which means that NB-IoT user equipment can only either receive or transmit. It can never receive and transmit simultaneously.

Another difference between NB-IoT and LTE user equipment concerns cell reselection. The NB-IoT user equipment supports this mechanism only in idle mode. This helps the NB-IoT user equipment to perform continuously and accurately. Therefore, using a scanner is the only viable solution to get accurate and comprehensive measurement results. Unlike testing with NB-IoT user equipment, scanner-based testing is passive and captures the measurement data directly from the radio frequency air interface.