What is it?

LoRa is a wireless modulation technique that originates from Chirp Spread Spectrum (CSS) technology. It lies in encoding information on radio waves with the help of chirps, linear frequency-modulated signals. LoRa-modulated transmission is resistant to disturbances and may be received over long distances.

How does it work?

The LoRa technique is particularly advantageous for applications that transfer small data chunks with low bit rates. By using LoRa, these apps can transmit data across a longer range compared with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or ZigBee. Besides, LoRa is a suitable choice for sensors and actuators operating in low-power mode.

LoRa is operable on license-free sub-gigahertz bands like 915 MHz, 868 MHz, or 433 MHz. For higher data rates in comparison with sub-gigahertz bands, it can also be operated at 2.4 GHz at the expense of range.

LoRa vs LoRaWAN®

While LoRa is a technology that allows the use of unlicensed wireless spectrum, LoRaWAN® is an open cloud-based protocol that creates the network layer empowering devices to communicate through LoRa.

Advantages of LoRa

The benefits of the LoRa wireless modulation technique include low power consumption and thus long battery life. Next, LoRa provides secure communication as it supports the encryption of data. It also excludes reliance on third-party communication channels.

LoRa is easily deployable thanks to its simple architecture and affordable by having an unlicensed spectrum.

Challenges of LoRa

Since LoRa has a low bandwidth (a network’s maximum capacity to transfer data in a specific amount of time), it is not quite suitable for long communications.

Other challenges of this technology encompass low transmission rate, spectrum interference, and incompatibility with real-time applications that demand, for example, lower latency, i.e., the amount of time not data downloaded over time.

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