Vodafone Formalises IoT Deals

Article By : Nitin Dahad

Arm and Vodafone used Mobile World Congress to formalize a strategic partnership which combines iSIM, internet of things (IoT) software and network services

BARCELONA – Arm and Vodafone used Mobile World Congress to formalize a strategic partnership which combines iSIM, internet of things (IoT) software and network services to reduce complexity and enable open, remote provisioning of IoT devices. Vodafone also announced it is teaming up with AT&T to drive IoT connectivity for the automotive industry.

The Arm-Vodafone agreement expands on the companies’ previous collaboration announced last September around integrated SIM (iSIM) technology to bring together Vodafone’s IoT global platform and connectivity, and Arm’s IoT software and services to provide enterprises with programmable, connected system-on-chip designs that eliminate the need for SIM cards. The companies said this allows customers to securely deploy, remotely provision and manage massive numbers of IoT devices across global markets at a significantly lower cost and complexity.

The biggest limiting factors in proliferation of IoT devices that many vendors admit to are fragmentation, security and cost.

“This partnership will enable global enterprises to significantly reduce the cost and complexity of securely connecting their IoT devices at scale so that they can quickly drive real value and actionable insights from their IoT data through our Pelion IoT platform,” said Dipesh Patel, president of the IoT Services Group at Arm.

The partnership between Arm and Vodafone will enable remote provisioning for devices using Narrow Band-IoT (NB-IoT) and Long Term Evolution for Machines (LTE-M) technologies and provides secure, open, standards-based deployment to any application and service provider. The Arm Kigen iSIM provides anyone deploying IoT devices globally with the means to develop and deploy a single IoT product that can be shipped and connected anywhere in the world. Vodafone’s global IoT network enables organizations to connect IoT devices across the broadest global footprint through the Vodafone IoT platform or the Pelion IoT platform.

In a press statement, Arm and Vodafone said that NB-IoT and LTE-M technologies will unleash the potential of IoT by massively broadening the range of objects that can be connected and unlocking business and societal value. For example, using data from sensors on connected devices will help address challenges in feeding the earth’s growing population by improving agriculture and livestock yields and reducing chemical and water use. It will also help utilities to more efficiently manage scarce resources such as water, gas and electricity and reduce carbon emissions.

Vodafone Teams With AT&T for Automotive IoT

Meanwhile, AT&T and Vodafone Business also announced they are working together to accelerate IoT connectivity in the automotive industry, developing consistent connected car solutions and experiences for customers across their combined footprints in North America, Europe and Africa.

Automotive companies face many challenges when deploying connected car solutions across countries. Each market has unique requirements and regulations, and it can be complicated for automakers to work across multiple network operators and vendors. AT&T and Vodafone said they understand the complexity of global deployments and aim to address these challenges. The goal is to simplify the deployment process, improve operations, deliver solutions, and make the network certification process easier.

“We each have rich experience in connected vehicle technology," said Chris Penrose, president of internet of things solutions at AT&T. "By working together, we can innovate faster and help our global customers bring connectivity, entertainment and telematics to more vehicles across our respective footprints.”

The companies will prioritize projects to enhance safety, security and entertainment capabilities. Key areas of focus will be 5G and autonomous vehicle technology, V2X capabilities (vehicle-to-everything), in-vehicle entertainment, connected car applications and services, global service quality models and the intersection of connected cars and smart cities.

AT&T and Vodafone Business already provide connected car services and products for the automotive, fleet and insurance industries, including electronics and telematics systems. AT&T and Vodafone said they are also working on various projects around the future of transportation and autonomous driving.

For example, Vodafone has been testing C-V2X (cellular-vehicle-to-everything) in Germany for the past two years, integrating C-V2X with adaptive cruise control, a driver assistance system that warns the driver about something happening on the road, and also automatically accelerates or brakes in response. In Germany, Vodafone has opened a 5G lab and test track to work with automotive companies to develop new transport innovations utilizing 5G.

AT&T is a founding member and exclusive connectivity provider of the American Center for Mobility, an advanced automotive development proving ground near Detroit.

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