A significant group of Public Network Operators from within the LoRa Alliance ecosystem have recently collaborated to roll-out an important initiative – the “Collective LoRaWAN Device Qualification Program” [CLDQP] which is intended to support manufacturers and ensure that devices work as intended, it will also significantly simplify and speed up the process required to have the confidence to connect devices to their networks.
Some Public Network Operators had been encountering issues with devices on both the LoRaWAN communication specification and with RF emission properties. These two aspects are crucial for successful IoT applications. Incompatibilities of the device with the LoRaWAN specification could result in unwanted behaviour on the network and inefficient energy management. This could be due to suboptimal antenna designs and sizes or insufficient RF emission power which causes the device to only use a small part of the network’s full coverage, causing the overall network coverage to seem suboptimal.
To ensure adequate performance of a device on a LoRaWAN network, each network operator had previously distributed their own device qualification trademark after testing the hardware. A hardware manufacturer had followed separate approval procedures with each different public operator to obtain these network specific qualification. Now, in order to make a more efficient system, the Public Network Operators participating in the CLQD program: Digital, KPN, Levikom, Netzikon, Objenious, Proximus, Sens and Swisscom have all agreed to use a common qualification process to approve the installation of LoRaWAN devices onto their networks.
Most importantly, the Network Operators have mandated that for any device to be accepted onto their networks it must already be LoRaWAN Certified through the LoRa Alliance certification program.
The minimal requirement for public network operators to approve a device are the following tests and certifications:
- LoRaWAN CertificationCM Version 1.0.1 or newer (test mode and continuous wave mode must be supported)
- RF Performance tests
- Interoperability tests
“We support the European Network Operators taking the lead with this important initiative as it will ensure the quality and performance expected by installers and end users,” said Derek Hunt, Director of Certification of the LoRa Alliance. “Their mandate for LoRaWAN Certifiedcm devices backs the robustness of our testing and certification program and we envisage more Network Operators from around the world employing similar schemes to improve the process for onboarding devices and provide confidence to the market that devices will work as intended.”
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