Your Managed IoT Connectivity Partner
Purpose built IoT Connectivity solutions with one point of accountability to ensure your business-critical assets are “always on”.
One IoT Connectivity Partner
No matter where you are in your IoT journey or technology evolution. Sierra has the proven experience to partner with and help you scale.
One Global SIM
A portfolio of simple & reliable connectivity solutions, from one Global SIM to regional connectivity solutions for LPWA, 4G, 5G, LTE IoT deployments.
One Management Platform
Seamlessly manage your connectivity for business-critical assets with one platform built for IoT.
Trusted by world’s leading companies to enable their IoT Connectivity
The Sierra Wireless 24/7/365 Global Network Operation Center (GNOC) and AirVantage management platform ensure you experience the best possible uptime while making it easy to monitor and maintain the lifecycle of your SIMs and devices in the field.
Access 600+ Partner Networks in Over 190 Countries
Sierra Wireless Smart Connectivity delivers the best possible network coverage and eliminates local coverage gaps with multi-network connectivity anywhere in the world. Our 24/7/365 global network operation center proactively prevents service disruptions to keep machines and assets connected.
What does 5G mean for IoT Connectivity?
5G is enabling advances in increased speed and low latency. 5G is delivering real-time communication.
The initial applications include automotive, mobile computing and networking, and Industrial IoT. Fleet management, freight, video surveillance, and tracking, are now using the 5G advances. As 5G solves more problems, more use cases unfold.
5G is not a hard cut-over and is designed to coexist with 4G. Many industries will take time for technology maturity while others will utilize the new advances that 5G offers.
Enterprise Requirements for IoT Connectivity
Analysys Mason conducted research exploring the key purposes for deploying IoT solutions and the challenges enterprises faced when deploying. The research examined enterprises’ key reasons for selecting an IoT connectivity partner and the changing requirements of enterprises in relation to public cloud.
How To Achieve Best Practices in a 5G-Enabled IoT World
Transforma Insights published a report on the key trends that are affecting the deployment of global IoT connectivity, the growing demand for high bandwidth services courtesy of 5G, and the best practice associated with seizing the advantages that those changes represent.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are connectivity methods for an IoT system?
Cellular IoT connectivity it is absolutely essential for your IoT strategy. It allows companies to scale up quickly, easily and securely, while also providing unique service offerings. Cellular technology enables an increased number of assets at the edge, offering you longer battery life and secure, reliable connectivity for all of those devices. Reliable, “always-on” wireless connections to assets allows organizations to deploy IoT applications that let them know where these assets are, how they are being used, if they need maintenance, and other information that they can use to lower costs, reduce equipment downtime, increase employee productivity, and improve customer experiences.
Wi-Fi and other short-range communications technologies are not well-suited for IoT connectivity. These technologies do not provide coverage over large geographic areas, can have difficulty connecting to assets that are located inside buildings, underground, or in rural areas, and are not able to connect to very large numbers of assets in a given area. Wi-Fi also uses large amounts of electricity to transmit data – a particular issue since many assets use battery-powered edge devices to connect to the Internet, and these devices often have to rely on batteries as their sole source of power for their useable life.
However, long-range cellular technologies based on global standards, like 5G NR, LTE, LTE-M and NB-IoT – are well-suited to provide the connectivity needed for these types of IoT use cases. Unlike Wi-Fi, they provide wide, geographic coverage, making it much easier for companies to insure they have an “always-on” connection to their asset.
What is IoT Connectivity?
IoT Connectivity technologies provide the network infrastructure and communication capabilities required by IoT devices to collect, transport, and exchange data over the internet and to be remotely monitored and controlled.
What are the types of connections in an IoT system?
Any IoT solution consists of the same basic building blocks.
- Applications, Analytics & Systems that provide the user experience for the connected products
- Operational Applications to remotely monitor, maintain and update deployed products
- Cloud Data Platform to securely collect, store, organize and analyze the data making it easy to build value added applications
- Connectivity allowing the deployed products secure, global network access so data can be transmitted and the product can be remotely managed
- Connected Device to collect that data from attached or nearby sensors, or other connected elements
Why is Connectivity important for IoT?
Connectivity enables the best possible communication by creating a bridge between the physical and the digital world. It links physical devices, such as sensors and controllers, and the applications in the cloud that interact with them. A connectivity solution enables applications to interact with devices to monitor, control and manage them, as well as subscriptions. An IoT-based service depends on the reliability and quality of the connectivity link. This makes connectivity an important building block in IoT infrastructure. Not only must it be reliable and offer the appropriate quality of service to serve the underlying devices and applications, but it must also be secure enough to stop sensitive data from falling into the wrong hands.
With the explosion of connected IoT devices, cellular operators are rapidly rolling out network solutions designed to support their unique needs. For example, LowPower Wide-Area (LPWA) networks are being deployed globally to support devices with battery longevity considerations and low data usage, while plans for 5G highspeed networks are being rolled out for high-bandwidth devices. When it comes to deploying an IoT solution, companies should understand their connectivity needs before choosing a technology.
What are the top IoT connectivity best practices?
Every IoT project should follow a set of four key best practices to achieve a successful data-driven transformation. These include:
- Build applications, not infrastructure: Businesses should stay focused on doing what they do best: building best-in-class applications and services.
- Be ready for millions of things: The IoT is growing at a rapid pace and is bringing with it more connection points every day. To be successful, an IoT platform must be capable of scaling to enable millions of points of connection.
- Select one platform for either cloud or edge: Businesses should select one platform that can distribute data processing at either the cloud level or at the edge.
- Pricing simplicity: To keep IoT costs transparent and under control, businesses should gravitate towards platforms that offer pricing models that are both simplified and predictable.
What are the top IoT connectivity challenges?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is enabling companies to digitalize their services, connect their products and improve their operational efficiency, but implementing IoT is very complex and has the potential to introduce new challenges:
- Unclear ROI -Difficulties in assessing deployment and maintenance costs make it hard to predict economic benefits.
- Complicated development -The cost and complexity of IoT developments can be difficult to predict and can escalate with unforeseen challenges.
- Interoperability – IoT networks often involve thousands of devices that must work together, and engineering this can be complex.
- Costly international deployment- Deploying IoT networks across different geographic regions means dealing with different connectivity service providers, which can be expensive and complex.
- Ensuring security- Companies worry about the risk of data loss, but not all IoT deployments have robust end-to-end security.
- Data privacy -If the data is sensitive and violates individuals’ privacy, companies that suffer a breach could be subject to stiff penalties.
- Unreliable service availability- Incomplete network coverage that may be acceptable for human users could lead to unsatisfactory service availability in IoT networks, because machines aren’t always in the same place as humans.
- Battery drainage -Devices must operate in the field for years at a time, making power considerations important.
- Labor intensive maintenance -Sending maintenance staff out to repair hundreds to thousands of devices in remote locations is expensive
What are the benefits of 5G connectivity?
The key-value of 5G is that it is enabling advances in increased speed (10-100X Data Rates), lower latency, higher capacity (1000X more capacity) and it is delivering real-time communication.
The initial 5G applications include automotive, mobile computing and networking, and Industrial IoT. Fleet management, freight, video surveillance, and tracking, are now using the 5G advances. As 5G solves more problems, more use cases unfold. But 5G is not a hard cut-over and is designed to coexist with 4G. Many industries will take time for technology maturity while others will utilize the new advances that 5G offers.
What are IoT connected devices?
There are a wide variety of different IoT devices and applications however, and depending on the use case, the owners of these devices will want different IoT connectivity capabilities. Nonetheless, generally companies want to deploy IoT applications over a wide area or many countries, if not immediately in the future. In addition, most of these companies are deploying IoT applications that are business-critical, in which losing connectivity to an IoT device in or attached to a smart meter, shipping container, high-value piece of construction equipment or other asset can have serious financial consequences.
Is Managed Connectivity the Right Solution for You?
Moving your connectivity services to a managed solution can be very confusing due to the extremely large number of companies that provide IoT solutions today. Unfortunately, they are not all the same and different carriers are better suited to help different types of environments. When you work with us, we can help you pick the right IoT solution for your unique needs.
We can help you identify what features you need and your security compliance requirements to choose the correct carriers to bring in.
We can recommend solutions based on current industry trends and best practices, so you can be sure that you are receiving a quality solution.
In addition to securing the correct solution, we can often assist you with implementing new solutions.
We will audit your current services and platform solutions to determine if you are using the best and most cost-effective solution for your business.
We are supplier agnostic and work with numerous providers. We can offer the best options from multiple suppliers.
We want to provide you with a great solution within your budget and will work to make sure you are investing your money well.
Working with an independent consultant allows us to analyze your needs and source the best solution provider(s) that meet requirements and exceed expectations. This is done agnostically, letting you focus on the project at hand without being tied down by endless supplier discussions.
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