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Docomo pushes global M2M service

Expands alliance with Jasper Wireless to provide web-based services for multinational customers managing M2M worldwide


Published: 7 December, 2012

READ MORE: Japan | NTT DoCoMo | M2M

NTT Docomo of Japan is expanding its machine-to-machine (M2M) services on a global basis as the major cellcos look to create broad platforms in this area. A platform approach, as seen at Vodafone, Telefonica and others, promises a higher role in the value chain than merely supporting M2M connectivity, embracing SIM management, security, applications and vertical optimization.

A few operators, notably Vodafone, have developed their own platform, incorporating many of the core network functions of their conventional networks, but most rely on third party offerings, such as those from Ericsson or Jasper Wireless. The latter counts AT&T among its customers and is also powering the Docomo service.

This will enable enterprises to manage their M2M devices and applications round the world from a single web portal. The service will span 200 countries, with typical early target sectors including vehicle fleet management. The web interface can be used for real time monitoring of data usage and communication fees, and will handle remote activation and deactivation of SIM cards and connections, plus frontline fault detection.

This move reflects a broader strategy at Docomo, to leave behind the insularity of recent years and become a global player - not by acquiring subsidiaries round the world, as it tried over a decade ago, but by pushing its services platforms to multinational customers and carrier partners.

Docomo and Jasper announced their alliance in February though it was focused on Japan then, with a particular interest in automotive and m-health segments, as well as smart meters. Jasper's platform provides the operator with apps and services which it says can accelerate uptake of M2M connectivity, by providing tailored value-adds for certain verticals.

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Posted by cjskinner on Friday 7th December, 2012

M2M platform and services lend themselves very well to road user charging based on kilometres travelled, time of day and road segment being used. This provides flexibility for the charging authority or company and at the same time convenience for the subscriber as the billing is done in much the same way as for wireless telephone usage. The billing could even be bundled in the same way as online services are bundled with phone accounts. This approach is being examined in New South Wales, Australia, as the benefits of road pricing to reduce congestion on roads and influence travel mode choices are gaining acceptance. The road pricing unit would use a device attached to the automobile windshield in the same manner as an electronic toll tag and could possibly be powered by solar/battery or otherwise by connection to the accessory supply


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