MWC 2014 Preview: Neul and Machina Research highlight MNO opportunity in the Internet of Things

Whitepaper addresses Internet of Things market and details how mobile operators can become successful service providers to enterprises, including the use of wide area networks

MWC 2014 Preview: Neul and Machina Research highlight MNO opportunity in the Internet of Things

Neul announced the launch of an industry whitepaper on the Internet of Things (IoT) today (19 February 2014) in conjunction with Machina Research: “The need for low cost, high reach, wide area connectivity for the Internet of Things”

The paper highlights the Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) network technology opportunity in addressing the Internet of Things market and details how and why mobile network operators (MNOs) can be successful service providers.

Commenting on the findings, author Jim Morrish, director at Machina Research, said: “Short range connectivity technologies may seem like a good choice for the Internet of Things, but they variously suffer from serious difficulties of network authentication, blocking by corporate firewalls, poor battery life, poor reach and unmanaged networks. As a result, a high proportion of Internet of Things applications would benefit significantly from a wide area network (WAN) connection.”

However, Morrish cautioned against simply reusing existing WAN technologies. “Due to high end-point and usage costs, short battery lives and the difficulty in providing ubiquitous network coverage to devices mounted deep indoors or other hard-to-reach locations, MNOs are unable to address those needs fully with their existing cellular network standards. 

“Fortunately now, new solutions such as Neul’s, are emerging that are designed specifically for M2M and are able to reach devices in remote areas, indoors or underground, with a long battery life – often over 10 years from a single AA battery,” said Morrish.

The prospects for such technologies are bright: Machina Research believes that these Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) networks have the potential to connect 17 billion devices by 2022.

The whitepaper explores the difficulties that MNOs face in delivering solutions for the Internet of Things with existing GSM or LTE networks. Further analysis is made of the importance of the LPWA opportunity for MNOs and their potential strengths in delivering such a system competitively.

“Ultimately, MNOs can be the winners in the Internet of Things space, but they can’t do it with their existing technologies”, said Stan Boland, CEO at Neul (pictured above). “Coverage needs to be much better than cellular, battery lives need to be much longer and modules need to be super-cheap, well under $5 in volume. 

“As a service, MNOs must then deliver high availability core transport networks, data access services and BSS/OSS functions at prices that are both aggressive yet highly profitable.” 

Boland continued: “Neul enables them to do just that, by providing a simple but highly integrated chip to enable those low-cost modules to communicate with their existing RAN infrastructure and by providing a massively scalable, secure, cloud-based service manager to deliver the core network switching functions, security and data access APIs. 

“Together gives MNOs the tools they need to deliver low cost, high QoS connectivity to huge numbers of devices so effectively that they can dominate this market.”

Neul is working with others to offer this as an open standard solution, designed to meet MNO requirements for an LPWA technology that can easily be deployed using their existing base stations and physical infrastructure, along with a low cost, cloud based core networking technology to which it connects.

The whitepaper is available for download here: http://www.neul.com/neul/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Neul_Machina_Research_White_Paper.pdf

Neul will be meeting key customers and partners at Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona.

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