The stage to do battle for a connected user is being laid by tech firms – Comsol, Sigfox and Vula Telematix – in a lucrative race to connect homes, farmers, doctors, patients, cars, utilities, and other everyday devices such as fridges and washing machines, etc. to smartphones. In the meantime, telco’s are setting up their Internet of Things (IoT) platforms to lure customers.
IoT, previously machine-to-machine (M2M), is a concept of connecting devices – ranging from refrigerators, geysers, smart electric meters, coffee makers, etc. – to the internet. Our smartphones, tablets, laptops and even refrigerators make up the Internet of Things. In fact, any device which is connected to the internet makes up the Internet of Things.
IoT is likely to expedite the next industrial transformation.
For years, South Africa’s biggest mobile phone operator Vodacom and rival MTN have led the charge for IoT or M2M solutions that led to the development of the telematics industry in the country with global players such as Mix Telematics. For more read: Mix Telematics’ Subscriber Growth is not Showing Signs of Slowing Down. To top it all the concept of placing a SIM card into a vehicle to track its performance was born in South Africa. With the growth of digital services and the hunt for new revenue streams, operators need to maintain their relevance and are seeking compelling services around mobile money, IoT and big data.