Increasing the value inaddition to scale AT&T empowers the Internet of Things

The global Internet of Things market continues to heat up. The United States, as one of the fastest growing countries in mobile communications, has also taken the lead in the field of Internet of Things. Among them, the performance of the incumbent operator AT&T was particularly impressive.

"AT&T has cultivated the IoT market over the long term. By the end of 2017, we have provided more than 38 million IoT connections globally, a double-digit growth rate compared to 2016, and a leading level in the United States." AT&T Internet of Things Solutions Sandy Verma, senior director, recently told the media world media reporter.

In addition to the increase in the scale of connectivity, AT&T also pays attention to the improvement of the connection quality. Sandy Verma said that AT&T continues to promote the business to a higher level, in addition to providing IoT connectivity, it also provides IoT platform services, security services and data intelligence analysis, etc., to give the IoT connection more rich connotation and value.

More than 38 million connections

As a veteran US operator, AT&T has more than 100 years of history. After more than a century of existence, AT&T has relied on the ability to continuously transform itself and continue to innovate based on market conditions. For example, facing the trend of network softwareization, AT&T initiated the Domain 2.0 project to realize the transition to “software” companies. In terms of innovation, AT&T has 8 Nobel Prize ownners and has 6 innovation centers in the world. Five patented inventions are introduced every day.

In terms of the Internet of Things, AT&T began its strategic layout very early. Currently, AT&T has operated Internet of Things services in more than 200 countries and regions around the world, forming a cooperative relationship with more than 500 operators worldwide. From a business point of view, AT&T provides users with highly secure and integrated network services, covering cellular networks, satellites, Mesh networks, cable networks, LPWA (Low-Power Wide Area Networks), etc., while also continuously expanding to higher levels, such as providing platforms Services, security services, data analysis services, etc.

Connection is the foundation of the Internet of Things. Nowadays, the connection status is increasingly diversified. AT&T is also providing articles for diversified connections and lays a solid foundation for the Internet of Things. “AT&T is a company that provides customers with connectivity. Ideally, connectivity is everywhere. At this stage, we provide customers with multiple network connectivity services. Through integrated monitoring and management, customers can manage their global presence at the same time. Networks, such as two-, three-, and four-tier networks, satellite networks, and LPWA networks,” said Sandy Verma.

AT&T's multi-network connectivity service solves the needs of users. As an example, Sandy Verma, AT&T's multimodal transport customers worldwide have tracker, industrial production equipment, Internet vehicles and other devices based on Internet of Things connectivity. They need to manage all devices and networks in an efficient and convenient manner. AT&T's multi-network connectivity services enable customers to effectively connect diverse terminals and devices.

In addition to basic connectivity services, AT&T also provides asset management services. For example, AT&T recently announced the establishment of the AT&T Asset Management Center (AMOC) to provide customers with cloud-based IoT assets omni-directional tracking and monitoring services. AT&T also introduced single-screen asset management in multi-network connectivity services, which integrates information related to asset management on the same screen, helping users to monitor and manage all network connection terminals. This not only saves customers The time cost accelerates the progress of product service listing and can also generate a large amount of valuable data information for customers.

Increase the value above the connection

In the process of rapid development of the Internet of Things, global operators generally face a problem: how to expand more services on the connection to increase the value of the Internet of Things?

The aforementioned multi-network connection service, asset management center, and single-screen asset management are some of AT&T's attempts. In addition to these, AT&T has also expanded on data analysis and security. "We provide a very secure internet solution, a connected Internet of Things platform, professional Internet of Things services and corresponding terminal equipment management to help our customers better provide professional services and consumer-oriented services. We also use them extensively. Data, through data analysis, provides customers with quasi-real-time decision support,” said Sandy Verma.

Taking shipping services as an example, Sandy Verma stated that there is a great demand for shipping services before shipment and after cargo inspection. These two links are costly and require service providers to provide forward-looking and predictive data and assist decision-making. Key data, such as container temperature control, utilization, location and tracking information, equipment control status, presence of theft, etc., as well as shipping route optimization information and inventory information. To this end, AT&T has introduced data management and analysis tools to provide users with the required data information and intelligent analysis services.

The full range of services has earned AT&T a large number of customers in multiple industries. According to Sandy Verma, AT&T has worked closely with financial, transportation, medical, retail, and public service sectors to provide smart cities, smart manufacturing, drones, and public sector responsive services. Especially in the area of Internet vehicles, AT&T has partnered with 25 leading passenger and truck manufacturers, such as Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover and Opel, and has provided more than 17 million Internet vehicles worldwide. AT&T continues to promote the development of self-driving cars globally and is the only partner of the US Mobile Research Center in self-driving cars.

AT&T also has excellent performance in containers. Sandy Verma explained that in terms of container transportation, AT&T first built a fully connected network, and then provided an IoT device. The device is compact and lightweight, with powerful sensing capabilities. It is installed in a container and can be used with GSM and satellites. The network, etc., can communicate, provide user's required information, track and check the position of the goods in time, and can also conveniently upgrade the firmware through the air-push method. Sandy Verma said that AT&T has cooperated with the world's leading shipping companies to continuously promote the application of Internet of Things in containers. At present, AT&T has used more than 350,000 TEU-enabled containers worldwide.

"LTE-M is a natural choice

Although it is a U.S. operator, AT&T has a global vision and aims to provide customers with Internet of Things services covering the entire world. To this end, AT&T has partnered with more than 500 operators worldwide to achieve a strong global seamless network coverage. AT&T also provides a one-stop control center platform. Taking the automobile as an example, users can implement Internet of Things services by simply placing AT&T-supplied IoT components on their own car engines in any country.

Because of its global network, AT&T has a broad customer base in all parts of the world, including the Asia Pacific region. For example, Asia-Pacific operator alliance Bridge Alliance and Sany Heavy Industry are both AT&T customers.

AT&T, which has a large number of customers in the Asia-Pacific region, is looking to further expand its market. Recently, the 2018 container multimodal transport Asia exhibition was held in Shanghai. AT&T came to the exhibition with the Internet of Things solution. AT&T said that its own plan can help customers in the Asia Pacific region to improve their efficiency and has broad market potential. For example, Sandy Verma said that China produces 60 million tons of seafood each year, which accounts for about 40% of the world's production. However, 30% of the shipments in the transportation process are deteriorating due to poor supply chain management. AT&T has brought advanced Internet of Things this time. Management plan to help Chinese customers improve the supply chain of seafood transportation.

At present, there are disputes between NB-IoT and LTE-M in the global Internet of Things. Sandy Verma said that AT&T's focus is LTE-M. "LTE-M has strong coverage, low cost, and long battery life. It is a technology developed specifically for the Internet of Things. In addition, LTE-M is a type of LPWA technology that provides carrier-grade security that meets 3GPP standards. Therefore, LTE-M is a natural choice."

It is reported that AT&T has deployed LTE-M network in the United States. About a year and a half ago, AT&T completed the acquisition of two operators, Iusacell and Nextel Mexico. With the help of two companies, AT&T has already completed the deployment of the LTE-M network in Mexico ahead of schedule.