What is Weightless?

Weightless. Simply better.

Weightless is both the name of a group, the Weightless Special Interest Group (SIG), and the technology. Weightless technology delivers wireless connectivity for low power, wide area networks (LPWAN) specifically designed for the Internet of Things. Weightless can operate in both sub-1GHz licence exempt and licensed spectrum.

The Weightless SIG is a non-profit global standards organisation formed to coordinate the activities needed to deliver the world's best IoT connectivity technology. These activities include:

  • Developing the definitive open standard LPWAN technology for IoT connectivity
  • Managing ongoing evolution, innovation and upgrades to the Standard
  • Administering the IPR policy
  • Managing legal disputes
  • Communicating and evangelising the technology
  • Managing test, certification and licensing of the technology

Long range

Conventionally IoT/M2M products have been developed around GSM based connectivity technologies but for most applications these are not optimal. GPRS, 3G and LTE technologies provide sufficient coverage for most applications but terminal hardware costs are high. 3GPP technologies and LTE based variants, NB-IoT/CIoT, set to emerge over the course of the next few years are legacy standards supporting wholly different use cases and technical requirements. They are exceptionally sophisticated and powerful but that sophistication ultimately renders NB-IoT/CIoT sub-optimal in terms of cost and energy consumption for tha majority of IoT applications. GSM based networks are often ill-suited to the short message sizes typical in IoT use cases. Significant overheads associated with signaling in order to move terminals from passive to active states, report on status and more lead to highly inefficient networks. Legacy telephony based technologies will satisfy user requirements that can tolerate higher costs and where devices have external power; they cannot ever meet the low cost and energy consumption characteristics of efficient 'clean slate' design LPWAN alternatives.

Short range

Several short-range technologies, notably Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Zigbee, offer endpoints at low price points – around $1-2. However, being short range, these cannot provide the coverage needed for applications such as automotive, sensors, asset tracking, healthcare and many more. Instead, they are restricted to machines connected within the home or office environments. Neither do they permit the economies afforded by much larger cell sizes with few base stations covering large areas such as whole cities.

Low Power, wide area network connectivity

Low power, wide area network (LPWAN) connectivity offers the long range capability of GSM based technologies with the low cost and power consumption characteristics of LAN/PAN.

Open Standard

It is critical that the technology is an open global standard rather than a proprietary technology in order to guarantee low cost and low risk, and to maximize user choice and ongoing innovation. A vibrant eco-system delivering terminals, base stations, networks and applications supports a wide range of IoT use cases. Weightless is an LPWAN technology Open Standard enabling long range, long battery life and ultra low cost IoT products to be deployed rapidly and economically around the world.

Same goal, better performance

Weightless technology delivers compelling competitive advantage over alternatives in the 3GPP space, in the traditional LAN space and across the rapidly emerging LPWAN space. In particular, Weightless delivers real differentiation in every way that matters

  • Capacity
  • Cost
  • Open Standard
  • Energy Consumption
  • QoS
  • Range
  • Reliability
  • Security

For more details of how Weightless is setting the standard for IoT, click on the buton below.


 Or for more on what makes Weightless technology the de facto standard in IoT connectivty, download the LPWAN briefing paper below.