Connected World 2010: Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Opportunity for Mobile Operators

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Connected World 2010: Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Opportunity for Mobile Operators

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I had the opportunity to present and sit on a panel at the Connected World Conference in Chicago last week, and I thought I’d summarize some of the key discussion points from these sessions. That ...

I had the opportunity to present and sit on a panel at the Connected World Conference in Chicago last week, and I thought I’d summarize some of the key discussion points from these sessions. That Machine-to-Machine (M2M) is gaining ever increasing mindshare and market size is indisputable. Some recent market data: the Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) (http://www.cisco.com/go/vni) forecasts that there will be over 5 billion personal devices connected to mobile networks by 2014 – and potentially billions of M2M-capable nodes. ABI Research forecasts nearly 200m deployed M2M devices by 2014, and operators’ own forecasts are much more aggressive, numbering over a billion in the same timeframe! And Berg Insight projects the share for M2M of total mobile subscriptions to grow from 1.4% in 2009 to 3.1% in 2014, with the U.S. having the highest M2M penetration at 4.3% of all mobile connections – largely due to massive adoption of telematics technology in the automotive industry.

M2M Vertical Markets
M2M is already driving operational process improvements for businesses, who are ever more willing to connect via cellular connection because of the increase in robustness of the technology. The key vertical industries for Mobile M2M include:
Energy/Utilities – M2M will transform energy production, distribution, and consumption in ways that the Internet transformed communications.
Healthcare – remote health monitoring and distant disease management are expected to be key parts of tomorrow’s health care system as more emphasis is given to cost containment and efficiencies in health care delivery.
Security – The move toward IP-based video surveillance is a driver for M2M security applications.
Transportation – Fleet tracking applications determine location and operational status of vehicles/inventory -- to track location, duration, idling time, provide trip reports, cargo unloading/loading stats.
Consumer – With M2M, operators could be looking at a greatly expanded “Total Available Household” revenue opportunity by providing mobile services for smart meters, Connected Home integration systems, mobile video, location tracking for pets, remote Healthcare monitoring, digital picture frames, and more.
Dedicated M2M Mobile Networks
Mobile Operators are increasingly deploying mobile packet core network elements (e.g., GGSNs, PDSNs, HLRs, etc.) specifically for the provisioning of M2M services. For operators, separate network elements provide several benefits including simplification of internal business operations and optimization of network utilization.
Any G, over a Common Core Mobile Network
The market for mobile M2M today consist mostly of 2G connections, as bandwidth requirements are minimal for many M2M applications such as telemetry. But many new use cases will require 3G and 4G mobile data bandwidth, especially those that benefit from the high bandwidth and low latency that 4G offers. Some examples include:
The Conne

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  • 1. Service Provider Mobility: Connected World 2010: Machine-to- Machine (M2M) Opportunity for Mobile Operators Posted by Brian Walsh on Jun 28, 2010 1:05:58 PM I had the opportunity to present and sit on a panel at the Connected World Conference in Chicago last week, and I thought I’d summarize some of the key discussion points from these sessions. That Machine- to-Machine (M2M) is gaining ever increasing mindshare and market size is indisputable. Some recent market data: the Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) (http://www.cisco.com/go/vni) forecasts that there will be over 5 billion personal devices connected to mobile networks by 2014 – and potentially billions of M2M-capable nodes. ABI Research forecasts nearly 200m deployed M2M devices by 2014, and operators’ own forecasts are much more aggressive, numbering over a billion in the same timeframe! And Berg Insight projects the share for M2M of total mobile subscriptions to grow from 1.4% in 2009 to 3.1% in 2014, with the U.S. having the highest M2M penetration at 4.3% of all mobile connections – largely due to massive adoption of telematics technology in the automotive industry. M2M Vertical Markets M2M is already driving operational process improvements for businesses, who are ever more willing to connect via cellular connection because of the increase in robustness of the technology. The key vertical industries for Mobile M2M include: Energy/Utilities – M2M will transform energy production, distribution, and consumption in ways that the Internet transformed communications. Healthcare – remote health monitoring and distant disease management are expected to be key parts of tomorrow’s health care system as more emphasis is given to cost containment and efficiencies in health care delivery. Security – The move toward IP-based video surveillance is a driver for M2M security applications. Transportation – Fleet tracking applications determine location and operational status of vehicles/inventory -- to track location, duration, idling time, provide trip reports, cargo unloading/loading stats. Consumer – With M2M, operators could be looking at a greatly expanded “Total Available Household” revenue opportunity by providing mobile services for smart meters, Connected Home integration systems, mobile video, location tracking for pets, remote Healthcare monitoring, digital picture frames, and more. Dedicated M2M Mobile Networks Mobile Operators are increasingly deploying mobile packet core network elements (e.g., GGSNs, PDSNs, HLRs, etc.) specifically for the provisioning of M2M services. For operators, separate network elements provide several benefits including simplification of internal business operations and optimization of network utilization. Any G, over a Common Core Mobile Network The market for mobile M2M today consist mostly of 2G connections, as bandwidth requirements are minimal for many M2M applications such as telemetry. But many new use cases will require 3G and 4G mobile data bandwidth, especially those that benefit from the high bandwidth and low latency that 4G offers. Some examples include: The Connected Car: Automotive Telematics is expanding to the “Connected Car”, where audio, video streaming, gaming services, etc. are delivered over 3G/4G networks to the family on the move.
  • 2. Multimedia Digital Signage: for example, transit passengers will be able to interact with the content or promotions on an HD touchscreen display directly to vote, win prizes, complete surveys, earn reward points, etc. The operator will work with advertisers to target content to be relevant based on the location of the kiosk, time of day, day of week, etc. Streaming Surveillance Video: in the shift from analog cameras to IP-based video surveillance, public safety organization have become increasingly aware of benefits of the enhanced image quality and detail offered by high-definition cameras and its use of the existing IP infrastructure. Light Reading's Sarah Reedy discusses other mission-critical M2M uses cases here. The LTE Evolved Packet Core (EPC) is being standardized as the next generation packet infrastructure for all access mechanisms, including LTE, 2G, 3G, non-3GPP, and even fixed networks. Cisco’s open LTE EPC architecture allows the operator to realize a truly converged packet core offering low latency and high throughput, while supporting all access technologies in a single platform. Operator can deploy a truly integrated network which supports seamless evolution from 2G to 3G to 4G using the same platform, while giving operators access to the widest range of M2M markets, offering connectivity and services to any device over any G access network. The “M2M-Tuned” Mobile Network Beyond establishing dedicated networks and operations for M2M, mobile operators are increasingly optimizing their networks for the unique needs of M2M applications. Operators can deploy mobile packet and core networks that provide capabilities to enable operators to differentiate their connectivity offering. Such M2M-tuned networks enable operators to more successfully compete for ASP business, and ultimately increase their revenue opportunity from selling higher-value connectivity services for M2M applications. Cisco’s IP NGN provides several such capabilities that enable operators to offer unique M2M services including:High Activation Rates Support, Diagnostics for Services Troubleshooting, Network-Initiated PDP Sessions for Increased Application Robustness, Network APIs for M2M Ecosystem Partners, and IPv6 Support for Network Address Availability. Realizing the Internet of Things Mobile operators are beginning to adopt a fundamentally different approach to participate and profit from the exploding M2M opportunity. Operators are adapting their business models and network strategies, including evolving from a standard infrastructure serving all customers to a dedicated infrastructure with enhanced features required by M2M customers. Such operators are moving beyond providing basic network connectivity for embedded devices to enabling M2M to reach its potential for life-improving and business efficiency changes. Intelligent mobile networking solutions are going to help Operators maximize the potential of this exploding market for the Internet of Things. 412 ViewsTags: 4g, 3g, lte, mobile_internet, monetization, m2m, long_term_evolution, packet_core