Guest Editorial Special Issue on Theories and Applications of NB-IoT

Jiming Chen, Kaoru Ota, Lu Wang, Preetha Thulasiraman, Zhiguo Shi
2018 IEEE Internet of Things Journal  
R ECENTLY, demands for low-power wide-area (LPWA) machine-type communications have increased dramatically. It is expected that LPWA connections will reach 2 billion in 2020, exceeding the number of traditional cellular users. Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT), a new radio access technology, has been released by the Third Generation Partnership Project for such demands. NB-IoT supports super coverage extension, massive number of connections and long user lifetime with low power cost and low
more » ... device complexity. With such prominent features, NB-IoT has become one of the dominating technologies in LPWA networks, applicable to a large range of IoT application scenarios such as smart meter, smart parking, smart home, smart tracking, e-health, etc. However, NB-loT is still in its infancy, needing deep theoretical investigation of modeling and optimizing system performance. Also, emerging applications that can be enabled by NB-loT and implementation challenges therein need further exploration. The objective of this special issue is to bring recent progress in theories and applications of NB-IoT that may help put together a clear picture for this new area. To this end, we selected 12 papers, which can be divided into four categories. Papers in the first category focus on media access control protocols design and its performance evaluation. The paper "Throughput Modeling and Analysis of Random Access in Narrowband Internet of Things" by Sun et al. attempts to systematically analyze the performance of random access in NB-IoT. The paper "Network Throughput Optimization for Random Access Narrowband Cognitive Radio Internet of Things (NB-CR-IoT)" by Li et al. derive a unique set of optimal sensing parameters which achieve the maximum throughput of a narrowband cognitive radio IoT (NB-CR-IoT) network. Papers in the second category attempt to introduce the concept of "group" into NB-IoT to improve the communication efficiency for meeting the requirements of different IoT applications. The paper "Group Communications in Narrowband-IoT: Architecture, Procedures, and Evaluation" by Tsoukaneri et al. focuses on group communications (i.e., multicast) in NB-IoT to efficiently support the transmission of firmware, software, task updates, or commands toward a large set of devices. The paper "Grouping-Based Discontinuous Reception for Massive Narrowband Internet of Things Systems" by Xu et al. proposes a grouping based energy efficient DRX strategy. The studies by Ning et al. and Li et al. try to solve the problems in NB-IoT systems when D2D communications are incorporated. The third category is concerned with the applications of NB-IoT. The work "Smart Choice for the Smart Grid: Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT)" introduces NB-IoT to the smart grid and compares it with the existing representative communication technologies in the context of smart grid communications in terms of data rate, latency, and range, etc. The paper by Zhang proposes an architecture to connect intelligent things in smart hospitals based on NB-IoT, and introduces edge computing to deal with the requirement of latency in medical process. In addition, Guo et al. propose a CSI amplitude fingerprinting based localization algorithm in NB-loT system, where the centroid algorithm based on CSI propagation model is optimized. The fourth category is about the review of NB-IoT and its related technical topics. Xu et al. survey the NB-IoT's evolutions, technologies and issues, spanning from performance analysis, design optimization, combination with other leading technologies, to implementations and applications. Yang et al. investigate the small-cell assisted traffic offloading for NB-IoT systems. Deng et al. provide an in-depth study on how to energy-efficiently heal the multi-modal confident information coverage holes in an NB-IoT-enabled hybrid IoT deployed for radiological pollution monitoring. These selected papers showcase the recent advances in NB-IoT, covering a broad spectrum ranging from theoretical contributions to system-oriented contributions. We would like to thank many people who contributed to the success of this special issue. In particular, we thank the numerous reviewers for their valuable feedback to the authors. We
doi:10.1109/jiot.2018.2838938 fatcat:qlttkeqwv5ey7jg6l3np3jbcwq