- Mobile operators are all going up the M2M value chain beyond connectivity services, adding end-to-end solution bundles for particular applications that may include connectivity, hardware, software and basic services such as provisioning, activation, SIM management, alerting, device management and troubleshooting, along with Tier 1 or Tier 2 customer support.
- However, actual managed services, where the operator hosts and manages an application and runs a service on behalf of the customer (which provides value such as remote monitoring of assets that belong to the customer’s customer), are less common but seem a likely opportunity for the future, especially to cater to SMBs that have fewer resources.
A recent service launch by Vodafone, called Vodafone Remote Monitoring and Control Service (RMCS), is indicative of where Vodafone and many competitors are focused in adding value to their solutions. RMCS provides a bundle including hardware, wireless network connectivity and application software that can help any company with remote assets to collect data and gain a real-time view of asset status and performance; this kind of capability is applicable to many different verticals and use cases. When I first read the Vodafone press release, however, I saw the word ‘service’ and initially misconstrued this to mean that the operator would run this as a managed service for its customers. It turns out that, at least for most large companies, not only are enterprises the expert on their equipment and how it is supposed to function, but they also want to remain the face to their customers and run these kinds of services themselves. Some enterprises will offer this capability as a free service, as remote monitoring can save manufacturers on their own costs for onsite repairs; while others may turn it into a revenue-generating opportunity, charging the customer for the remote status monitoring and analysis. In any of these models, the operator is still generating incremental recurring revenue, but this would not include a management fee for running the service itself. Continue reading “M2M Managed Services May Represent Future Opportunity”