How to choose best IoT connectivity solution for asset tracking
Internet of Things (IoT) is revolutionizing how assets are tracked and managed worldwide. We see a large number of asset tracking projects in the field with varied use cases from shipping containers to personal trackers. As more of the assets are getting connected in the field and technology is evolving, the requirements of how these assets are connected is also evolving. We see new challenges, yet common challenges faced by Enterprises rolling out these projects.
Best option to connect devices
Most common and reliable means of connecting the assets at a large scale, especially if assets are moving (more often than not that is the case) is through cellular and satellite connectivity with cellular being the most widely used and commercially feasible method.
The way SIM technology is used today, is a massive bottleneck towards future proofing these large scale deployments. Connectivity requirements for IoT devices is different from our personal smartphones.
IoT devices might be distributed globally without the user having any access into it and the cost and effort of changing the connectivity provider is extremely high. So, most assets that are connected today are based on the needs of today using a certain provider that might be fit for today. What about tomorrow, the future? Are we going to end up with millions of IoT devices that do not deliver service matching the needs of tomorrow? Yes, most likely.
Enterprises selling asset tracking solutions for rail, truck and other moving equipment/assets or even personal safety and tracking solutions are facing this particular issue or they will soon, on most occasions with millions of devices already in the field. Meaning, too late.
What to ask when choosing connectivity?
If the service provider needs to be changed, physical SIM card needs to be changed as well unless devices are deployed with an eSIM. Does an eSIM really help? Would it help to have an electricity meter without any power supply? No, right? Same is the case with eSIMs. eSIMs are enablers of a service, without that service they are just as good as normal SIMs or worse because normal SIMs can at least be removed and replaced at high cost but eSIMs are embedded into the device circuit.
Before launching mass deployment of asset tracking projects think about the future. SIMs and eSIMs are not the answer to the problem, it is the right service enabled by eSIMs that is most critical for asset tracking projects.
Ask yourself the right questions
Should I use one connectivity provider? What are my options to scale while expanding from local to global? What happens when unpredictable circumstances knock my door where service must evolve for me to stay in business? I can prepare for today and for the foreseeable future, but how do I prepare for an unforeseeable future in IoT, a future that is most likely going to knock my door if I have to stay in business?
Global roaming connectivity that supports multiple networks in each country is a minimum requirement to begin with. But yet again, choice of single provider may not be the best option or the most reliable option, so how should it be managed to deliver the most optimized service at an acceptable cost.
Let’s assume you wanted to get your SIMs embedded into devices and distributed globally and either your suppliers roaming agreements were evolving and changing regularly or not supporting anymore the needed connectivity in certain countries or just out of price range compared to new offers available. Question is not what will you do, rather what can you do? Change the SIM cards in the devices distributed globally? Really? What is the cost for this?
eSIMs were created for a purpose. Removing the plugin SIM tray was not the objective, but to deliver a service that would allow such projects to succeed globally. Unfortunately technology has not been used to deliver that service, at least not yet.
Most enterprises start small in one country and select the local connectivity provider. Most of the enterprises are looking to scale their business globally and therefore specialised connectivity service is the key. It’s not really an option for enterprises to go and negotiate their connectivity deals in each and every country or regions.
How to use the eSIMs and insure your future?
With close to 20 years experience in Telecom M2M and IoT standard business models, the industry is still not there to support the underlying IoT business cases properly. It’s time for change. What can you do?
As an IoT enterprise you should be looking for connectivity service providers who are able to orchestrate your needs globally without getting married and having the insurance to change suppliers without entering any long lasting and costly switching projects in real time, at-a-click, without additional cost burdens and whenever required.
An orchestration service delivered by an independent IoT service provider, such as ConnectedYou. ConnectedYou eSIMs are fully owned and managed by ConnectedYou as an independent provider and can be enabled with connectivity from any connectivity provider. With multiple, large global connectivity providers integrated into the service you choose the connectivity based on your needs today, optimize regularly as business grows and insure it for any catastrophic change in the unforeseeable future. ConnectedYou delivers a service that brings you the best connectivity for your current and future needs, managed and orchestrated through ConnectedYou eSIMs.
There is massive room for improvement and that’s why we created ConnectedYou, a connectivity independent IoT orchestration Service platform to catalyze IoT roll-outs around the globe.
We would be very keen to hear about your challenges, help you and share your pain with our ecosystem of suppliers and partners and deliver the right service to insure and offer a future proof IoT roll-out.
As a closing thought, think about why you buy SIM cards or eSIMs in first place? We wouldn’t mind you writing a short email telling us that. Reach out to us at email@example.com.