M2M One – February 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to M2M One’s February newsletter – 2016 is already shaping up to become a landmark year for the M2M/IoT industry with CISCO announcing the acquisition of Jasper earlier this month. The team at M2M One are looking at how we can continue to provide Australia’s best M2M service while offering new functionality and products to keep your business on the cutting edge. This year we’ll be bringing in: New International Roaming services & pricing, Improved alerting and analytics, a new billing & payment system, a new IP network and much more – Stay tuned!

This month we take a look at one of our first cloud software partners in Eagle.io, how to better manage your SIM inventory in the Jasper M2M Control Centre, some predictions for M2M/IoT moving in to 2016 and our ever present reminder of Telstra’s 2G sunset on December 1st this year.

This month’s newsletter features:

  1. Notification – Eagle.io and M2M One Partnership
  2. Reference –Custom Fields in Jasper
  3. Blog –M2M & IoT Predictions for 2016
  4. Customer Reminder –Telstra 2G (GSM) 900MHz Shutdown

1. Notification  Eagle.io Platform Partnership

If you’ve purchased a SIM card from us in the past, there is a reasonable chance that you’re using it in a remote device to collect time sensitive data, which requires a software solution to analyse, graph, dashboard and alert based on the values you’re measuring.

In the early days of M2M & IoT managing this data and presenting it in a user friendly and useful way was time consuming and required in house software. The recent explosion of M2M & IoT software platforms has made accessing, storing and presenting your data considerably easier.

To help our customers navigate through the variety of solutions on the market, we are working to develop partnerships with cloud software providers that allow you to make use of the data you’re transmitting with M2M One SIMs.

One of our first partners is eagle.io – www.eagle.io

Eagle.io has native compatibility with alarge number of dataloggers and is able to ingest, visualise, dashboard and setup alerts and alarms for any devices that can push data to an FTP, email it, or save it
to Dropbox.

Using eagle.io, you can visualise and alert not only your machine and environmental data, but data streams generated from your operational software, or third-party data published to websites.

The outcome of our partnership means that we can provide M2M One customers withfree, three month trial access to the platform.

To kick off a three month free trial, complete the web form and mention this newsletter feature. You will be contacted within 24 hours to set up your platform access: https://www.eagle.io/trial.

2. Reference – Custom Fields in Jasper

In April last year M2M One opened up admin functionality for our customers in the Jasper M2M Control Centre allowing improved control of your SIM inventory (read the original announcement here) Since then we’ve had some great feedback on the platform and it’s only going to get better in 2016.

One of our most frequently asked questions from our customers is how can they better use Jasper as an authoritative inventory of their services.

In the M2M One instance of the control centre you can assign up to 5 custom fields to your SIM cards and also assign ‘End Customers’ which can be used to group services into cost centres when exporting to Excel.

M2M Recommends avoiding storing any information in the IPX Address, Invoice# & M2M One Billing notes fields as these are frequently updated by M2M One and our billing system and will overwrite any stored customer information – Instead please use End Customer & Custom Fields 1-5
 
To add custom fields to your account (Page 5 of the user guide):
  • Select the Admin Tab and Navigate to Custom Fields
  • To Enable any of the 5 custom fields click in the Enabled column and select Yes
  • To name any of the 5 custom fields enter the desired name in the Custom label field
  • When updates have been saved, navigate back to the Service listing and right click on any column header – This will open a list of available headers, you should see your new custom fields in this list. Enable to tick-box next to your desired headers to enable it in service view and excel exports.
To add End Customer information to your SIMs (Page 14 of the user guide):
  • In the service listing click on any ICCID number
  • In the ICCID page select the End Consumer tab under the Additional Information section
  • Press edit to bring up the End Consumer pop-up
  • Only the End Customer information will be displayed on the Services listing under the End Customer header

3. Blog – M2M & IoT Predictions for 2016

As we move forward into a new year, take a look back at our 2015 Year in Review, as well as predictions for trends in the year ahead, including Edge vs. Cloud, LPWANs, 2G Shutdowns and satellite.
You can read the full piece on our blog

4. Reminder – Telstra 2G 900MHz Shutdown

M2M One would like to continue to remind customers that Telstra will discontinue their 2G/GSM 900MHz network on the 1st of December 2016. This will impact all M2M One customers utilising 2G/GSM only hardware in Australia.

You can view our official notification here

M2M One customers with 2G devices have the opportunity to utilise 3G and soon, 4G LTE. All M2M One SIM cards are compatible with the Telstra 2G, 3G (and soon) 4G network, so you will not need to physically change any SIM cards from M2M One.

M2M One customers affected by the shut down of Telstra’s 2G/GSM network who are looking for solutions/alternatives for their 2G/GSM devices are advised to contact a 3G/4G LTE device vendor.
Please read M2M One’s notification of the shutdown if you haven’t already.

You can also read our blog on the Australian 2G Shutdown

 

Star Gazing – 5 Predictions for M2M & IoT Trends in 2016

Star Gazing – 5 Predictions for M2M & IoT Trends in 2016

Alright so we’re a couple of weeks into 2016 so I think I’m still within the prediction grace period? If you haven’t already you can read my review of 2015 on our blog and see how my predictions from 2015 stacked up.

Last year I was fairly bullish on specific change, and that didn’t really pan out for me… This year I’m going with slightly broader strokes.

So here are my predictions for things we can expect to see in M2M/IoT in 2016, have at it:

edge computing vs cloud computing iot and m2m

A battle for the ages… – EDGE © WWE

  1. Edge Computing vs Cloud – You may have heard the term Edge Computing start to be thrown around last year, you might have even heard someone use the term FOG computing (and if you were anything like me your head immediately hit the desk). Edge computing is the concept of putting the intelligence, processing and decision making power into the device sitting at the edge of the network.
    Typically, modems/remote devices can be seen as ‘dumb’, they simply collate data from various sensors and send it back to a central server or more recently to a cloud environment for processing and decision making.
    Edge computing wants to change this by empowering the device to make decisions as soon as the data is received.
    Reducing the latency and ‘time to act’ significantly benefits autonomous or critical applications like the increasing swarms of drones and unmanned safety units being developed for agriculture and emergency applications like forest fires.
    The other benefit to processing on the edge is that it theoretically reduces the amount of data sent back over a wireless network, a device might alert someone that it is taking an action or has completed an action rather than sending a request to act, waiting for a response, then acting.
    The debate is still in its early days with proponents on both sides arguing the benefits and drawbacks, but I have a feeling we’ll see a lot more coverage of edge computing in 2016.

    LPWAN M2M and IoT

    Some of the major LPWAN players you’ll see in 2016

  2. LPWAN on the rise – 2015 saw Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) firmly insert themselves into the IoT networking conversation. Last year France’s SIGFOX secured over $100 million in funding and announced expansion plans in the USA & Australia arguably putting themselves at the forefront of the LPWAN movement, but the LoRA Alliance & Weightless SIG are also poised to make a disruptive splash in Low Power Communications.
    Australia has it’s very own Sigfox deployer Thinxtra who will be rolling out pilot sites soon. Telstra are also looking at LPWAN with a pilot in Melbourne CBD and we expect a number of LoRA alliance deployers to be hot on their heels.
    Expect more conversation and visibility of LPWAN networks in 2016 but there is still a fair amount of consolidation & brand building to be done before we reach peak LPWAN penetration.

    iot and m2m cellular decisions

    Where do we go from here? – Parks & Recreation © NBC Universal

  3. Cellular Flux – Expect the 2G/3G/4G debate to continue to rage on in 2016 with AT&T and Telstra both poised to hit the button at the end of the year with Optus and all of Singapore’s cellular providers aiming to do the same in early 2017.
    In the operator space I can see a few scenarios happening:

    • More networks announce their 2G shutdown dates – As alternative technologies become more affordable and solution providers in some parts of the world are inevitably forced to make the change, I can see more operators feeling comfortable with pulling their 2G networks.
    • LTE leapfrogging – With a strong established base of 2G hardware in Europe I can see some operators taking the Telenor approach and shutting down 3G prior to 2G in a long term effort to consolidate everything under LTE (Read about Telenor’s 3G 2020 shutdown here) It’s a smart approach as it buys more time for operators who are still rolling out LTE base stations and fine tuning coverage and it allows their customers to continue planning and designing boards without being forced into a 3G device that may not last as long as they hope.
    • Opportunistic 2G grabs – We’ve already seen M2M/IoT MVNOs making any deal they can to squeeze more life out of 2G in the USA with Vodafone still not announcing in Australia I’m wondering if we won’t see the same here. There is even talk of some independent operators/MVNOs buying old hardware and spectrum to keep 2G alive for M2M. It’s a short term gain for a decent outlay but with Asia and Europe still churning out cheap 2G hardware it may pay off.

In the hardware space 2016 there is still some juggling of frequency bands to get the right products for multiple markets together. Most customers we work with are waiting patiently for hardware compatible with Band 28 (700Mhz) which will offer the greatest LTE coverage on Telstra’s 4GX network the successor to their Next-G 3G offering.
With Telstra’s 2G shutdown looming we’ve already seen customers in Australia testing heavily with LTE in the hopes of getting everything ready to bypass 3G entirely.

Iridium Next

Irdium NEXT coming to an orbit near you in 2016…

  1. Satellite – 2015 was a relatively quiet year for M2M/IoT over satellite, expect this to change in 2016.
    Iridium will be launching their first run of satellites for their Iridium Next constellation partnering with US space exploration heartthrobs SpaceX and Russian organization Kosmotras. With SpaceX delivering a very successful launch for Orbcomm last year, Matt Desch and the Iridium team should be feeling positive. While Next isn’t scheduled to be fully operational until 2017 the increased noise and conversation around Iridium is sure to spark renewed interest in M2M/IoT applications using satellite, especially those with global implications.
    As cellular operators continue to struggle with global roaming arrangements, pricing and interconnects we are seeing lots of customers with low bandwidth global solutions opt for the satellite route. With services like Iridium’s SBD and Inmarsat/Skywave’s IDP, companies who want a solution that will work out of the box anywhere in the world without having to deal with roaming contracts, excess usage and coverage issues are finding more and more uses for satellite as the cost for hardware and airtime comes down.
iot and m2m facepalm

Face meet palm – Star Trek Next Generation © CBS

  1. Terminology – With several major organizations already making steps to remove M2M from their corporate lexicon and replace it with IoT could we have finally settled on a term for this nebulous new technology?
    The writing has been on the wall for M2M for some time now, the term is already seen by most as an “insider term” only really used by those in the industry and not something that needs to be on customer facing marketing. To the customer this connected world and everything in it is IoT. Sure some of the major players will still try and make my palm connect with my forehead by rolling out IoE, IoYT & IIoT but now we’re starting to see job titles incorporating IoT, I think we are fairly safe to say we’ve decided on a term.
    Maybe I should be filing this one under hope rather than prediction, but could 2016 finally be the year we stop with all the pointless acronyms and corporate marketing terms and just call things what they are?
    In the solutions space I’ve already started to see a move away from using “smart”, “e-“ & the dreaded “i” prefixes for products. Does anyone really use the term smart-phone anymore? It’s just a phone, they’re all smart by definition now. Likewise we’ll start to see IoT products go from being Smart Thermostats, to just being thermostats as the technology becomes commonplace.

And there you have it – My 5 predictions for M2M/IoT in 2016! Do you think these are more likely than my 2015 predictions? I’d love to hear what you think, Let us know on Twitter @M2MOneAU, on LinkedIn at M2M One or visit our website at www.m2mone.com.au.

James Mack

General Manager – M2M One

 

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of M2M One or M2M Group.

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