Qualcomm, Nokia and multinational conglomerate General Electric (GE) hailed an “industry first” demonstration of a private LTE network in unlicensed spectrum for Industrial IoT (IIoT) use.

The technology is being developed by the companies to provide private, secure wireless coverage for a range of industrial settings including mines, power plants, offshore oil facilities, factories and warehouses. The partners said the availability of private LTE networks would advance the digitsation of the industrial process.

Following the successful demonstration of the technology, the three plan to conduct field trials later this year.

The companies created the network using Qualcomm chipsets, Nokia’s base stations and automated cloud infrastructure, and GE’s operating system for industrial internet use.

Michael Wallace, SVP and GM for Emerging Business at Qualcomm said: “Industries such as factories, warehouses, container ports and airports are increasingly dependent on wireless connectivity to efficiently operate as they continue to utilise more wireless data and connect countless IoT devices to their networks.”

“With this collaboration, we are providing companies in the Industrial IoT space the ability to leverage the core advantages of LTE including full mobility, high data rates and coverage, predictable latency, quality of service and ease of deployment.”

Peter Marx, VP Advanced Concepts, GE added: “Bringing LTE-based networks that use shared and unlicensed spectrum to our customers operating in remote and unpopulated locations is a powerful advancement beyond what is available today.”