The Rise of the Internet of Things has already begun!
However unlike ‘Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines’, machine-to-machine (M2M) network connectivity is rapidly connecting and growing all industries and sectors globally. The business benefits for connected devices and assets or for remote location connectivity are instantly clear – always available information and data to make informed decisions.
Machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity describes technology that enables communication between multiple devices without the need for human interaction, turning data into meaningful information that can be analysed and acted upon by a business. Using wireless connectivity, global M2M applications include smart metering, patient monitoring, CCTV surveillance, vehicle tracking, secure ATMs and digital signage.
M2M is the foundation upon which the Internet of things (IoT) has been built, a network of everyday objects and devices connecting to the internet and transferring data without the need for interaction. Connecting to networks wirelessly, ‘smart’ products communicate in an intelligent and almost aware fashion, devices are no longer isolated they are Internet-enabled, in home appliances, in vehicles including cars and trains, in shops and leisure facilities and in the workplace.
For most people it’s about connected devices taking away the need to do something, the fridge that knows when you have run out of milk and adds it to your next online order, or the app that tells you which route to take home to avoid traffic. However, for small business, distributed enterprise or global industry, M2M connectivity opens up realms of opportunities.
Whether a business is ‘fixed’, ‘mobile’ or a combination of both, being able to effectively engage with the network is of paramount importance, the reliable and secure availability of critical data, whether its internal business data or customer centric ‘big data’, means that a business can tailor its operations to become smarter, more effective and ultimately deliver greater benefits.
For example, Fleet/Vehicle Telematics has been a cornerstone of the growth of M2M, with readily available information on the security of goods and location of vehicles, real-time data analysis is helping to improve business performance. In addition the Energy sector has seen huge growth in the deployment of M2M technologies, installing devices ranging from smart metering in homes to monitoring oil pipelines and wastewater facilities across vast landscapes.
By 2020 M2M is projected to become a global industry worth almost $950 billion, its clear from this projection and the explosion of the IoT that more and more businesses are talking advantage of the opportunities from fixed and mobile network connected solutions.