Vodafone launches M2M service

Vodafone is launching a global machine to machine (M2M) service platform to help companies deploy and manage large, wireless M2M projects.

The new platform will also be supported by an expert team with worldwide responsibility for growing Vodafone’s M2M business.

Vodafone is looking to bring its scale and expertise to this fast growing market as more and more corporates use wireless M2M to enhance customer service, in areas including smart metering, connected cars and the remote monitoring of equipment. This is expected to result in significant demand for M2M services on mobile networks across Europe over the coming years.

Globally, operator revenues for wireless M2M were Euro 3 billion in 2008, forecast to rise to Euro 8.9 billion in 2012, according to the analyst firm Berg Insight.

Vodafone will provide a single point of contact for customers to manage the complex area of M2M connectivity from early concept development, to support for national and multinational deployments.

The Vodafone M2M global service platform, with its unique patent-pending functionality, will provide corporate customers with managed connectivity for M2M smart service deployments. Companies will be able to centrally manage and control the process of rolling out M2M devices across many countries, increasing the speed of implementation and reducing the cost, complexity and risk traditionally associated with deploying such projects.

As well as enabling companies to gather useful customer data from a wide range of wireless intelligent devices, the platform will offer a suite of management functionality including the ability to centrally activate, suspend and deactivate devices at the click of a button.

Vodafone has also put in place a global M2M team to develop services designed to match specific industry needs, alongside flexible commercial models. The team will analyse and provide solutions for emerging M2M market requirements, such as smart metering for utilities and e-call in the automotive industry, an alert system for cars involved in accidents for the automotive industry.

With over 100 staff working in M2M, Vodafone has extensive experience in the market and it is hoped that the new organisation will accelerate the development of M2M smart services.

In addition to the role M2M can play in enabling smarter services, Vodafone believes the technology can help large businesses to reduce their operations’ impact on the environment. An upcoming Vodafone report entitled ‘Carbon Connections’ calculates that the greenhouse gas emissions savings from a range of M2M-enabled smart systems could be more than 90 million tonnes per year across 25 EU countries by the year 2020.

“The market for M2M smart services using intelligent devices is taking off, but in order for it to deliver its true potential, service providers like Vodafone need to provide customers with managed connectivity that is reliable, cost effective and universal,” said Nick Jeffery, chief executive at Vodafone Global Enterprise. “With our dedicated global M2M service platform and experienced M2M team in place, Vodafone is able to give customers the support they need at a price they can afford so that they can bring to market innovative propositions.”

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