Wireless access technologies are being embedded in utility meters, health devices, public safety systems, among others. These devices have low processing power and communicate at low data rates. New communication standards are being developed to support these machine-type communications (MTC), such as Cellular Internet of Things (CIoT), which is being developed by the third generation partnership project (3GPP). CIoT introduces cooperative ultra-narrow band (C-UNB) communications. It supports ad-hoc uplink transmissions, delay-tolerant downlink transmissions, and a simple authentication scheme. The C-UNB approach is proposed for Mobile Autonomous Reporting (MAR) applications, but it is not clear if it can be used for smart grid systems, such as sensors and smart meters in the Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI). In this paper, the authors review the C-UNB approach, study its performance in terms of collision rate and throughput, and discuss its potential for smart grid reporting applications.