The Internet of Things remains a sticky realm for communications service providers: Most of them are still struggling to define the roles they will play in the IoT sector and how they can extend beyond being providers of undifferentiated connectivity to encompass the creation of IoT apps that add revenue to their networks.
But there are those who are already making progress. Here are the finalists in the Most Innovative IoT/M2M Service Provider category for this year's Leading Lights awards:
AT&T Inc. -- AT&T's Internet of Things and M2M Strategy
In January, AT&T unveiled a Beta Version of AT&T Flow Designer, an open-sourced, cloud-based visual development tool aimed at speeding the development time required to build new IoT applications. Typical IoT-focused solutions can be complex as they require application integrations at the device, network and application layers. Together, the carrier's M2X Data Service and the AT&T Flow Designer are designed to relieve the enterprise developer of many of these complexities. The combination of AT&T's network and IoT development tools is a compelling package for enterprises and a step beyond undifferentiated connectivity. (See AT&T Steps Up Its IoT Offensive and AT&T Launches IoT Managed Service for Developers.)
KORE Telematics Inc. -- Single-source Global Connectivity for M2M/IoT
KORE's edge in providing IoT solutions comes from its unified dedication to the sector -- supplemented in November 2014 by the acquisition of RacoWireless, a provider of mobile data solutions supporting the IoT. (See KORE, RacoWireless Become IoT Powerhouse.)
Together, KORE and RacoWireless deliver services on behalf of more than 1,500 corporate customers in automotive, healthcare, fleet tracking and other sectors. In a sector that's all about billions of connected devices, scale, reach and focus are critical differentiators.
The Leading Lights 2015 winners and newest class of Hall of Fame inductees will be unveiled at the Leading Lights awards dinner, which will be held the evening of Monday, June 8, at Chicago's Field Museum. The star-studded soirée will follow a day of special workshops covering topics such as SDN, 5G and Carrier Ethernet for the Cloud that take place ahead of Light Reading's Big Telecom Event (BTE), which this year is being held at the McCormick Place Convention Center on June 9 and 10. (Details and the agenda are on our show site, Big Telecom Event.)
— Jason Meyers, contributing editor, special to Light Reading