IoT News Roundup

By IOT Journal

Lantronix announces beta release of multi-dimensional IoT application development and deployment platform; Flexera adds recurring revenue engine, drives subscriptions for SaaS, IoT, ISVs; Podsystem Inc. presents new approach to remote IoT connectivity; AT&T launches nationwide LTE-M network for Internet of Things; Systemone enhances health care in developing world via Vodafone global IoT technology; JeraSoft intros IoT-based billing platform software; U-blox offers ultra-small RPMA module.

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The following are news announcements made this week:


Lantronix Announces Beta Release of Multi-Dimensional IoT Application Development and Deployment Platform

Lantronix, Inc. (NASDAQ: LTRX), a global provider of secure data access and management solutions for Internet of Things (IoT) and information technology (IT) assets, has announced availability of the beta release of MACH10, a multi-dimensional IoT application development and deployment platform that dramatically simplifies the process for OEMs to deliver web-scale IoT applications.

“Following a successful preview and demonstration of MACH10 to early access customers during the March quarter, we’re pleased to announce the availability of the MACH10 beta,” said Jeff Benck, president and CEO of Lantronix. “This beta release marks another important milestone as we move towards general availability of MACH10 later this calendar year and accomplishing Lantronix’s mission to deliver easy-to-deploy solutions that enable companies to leverage the benefits of the Internet of Things.”

Utilizing APIs built on industry standard protocols, MACH10 allows OEMs to significantly reduce the amount of time spent in developing IoT applications through extensible ready-to-use management applications that can be deployed immediately and a suite of essential microservices that allow OEMs to jumpstart their IoT application development while preserving their existing IoT software investments.

Interested OEMs can find more information on MACH10, request a demo or apply for access to the beta release by going or contacting a Lantronix sales office.


Flexera Adds Recurring Revenue Engine, Drives Subscriptions for SaaS, IoT, ISVs

Flexera, the company that’s reimagining the way software is bought, sold, managed and secured, has announced a new recurring revenue engine to help companies accelerate subscription and recurring revenue growth. FlexNet Operations is the first software monetization platform in the industry to include renewal management, supporting the growing subscription economy fundamental to Software as a Service (SaaS) and Internet of Things (IoT) companies as well as traditional software producers.

Gartner’s February 2017 Disruption in Software Business Models Creates New Opportunities for Monetization report states, “Technology strategic planners will find next-generation software monetization is not about protection, limited to IP licensing, but about growth from enabling new models with repeatable revenue streams.”

SaaS, IoT and traditional ISVs need as much visibility and insight into software renewals as into new customer acquisition. Growing recurring revenue increases company valuations. And higher valuations increase shareholder value. Strong renewal rates play an important role in Mergers & Acquisitions, Initial Public Offerings, business growth predictions and strategic planning. Many producers don’t have the right process and technology in place to effectively manage the renewal process. So, they have churn and lost revenue. Or, they miss opportunities to fix customer problems before the customer seeks out a new solution. Not to mention that without effective renewal management, producers will struggle to effectively predict their recurring revenue.

“Many producers are nowhere near the 85-95 percent industry standard renewal rate – and if they’re not, it often can be attributed to an ad-hoc approach,” said Maureen Polte, Vice President of Product Management at Flexera. “Flexera’s new recurring revenue engine lets producers predict renewals, and give customers visibility for their budget planning. This is especially valuable for IoT and SaaS industries that are driven by subscriptions business models.”

Producers lack an easy way to show their customers a list of upcoming renewals. Rather than having customers look through every product or service contract to understand the renewal date – producers can provide an easy list – that shows what is coming due and when. FlexNet Operations provides a single version of the truth for producers and their enterprise customers, taking the burden off enterprises to manage this data themselves. For instance, a last-minute renewal notice can lead to an upset customer – who is presented with an unplanned, unbudgeted renewal request.

Lack of awareness as to when a software contract expires also means enterprises risk service disruptions – or worse, a denial of service – when a subscription or maintenance contract runs out. And if the worst case scenario occurs – and a contract unexpectedly expires, customers risk being out of compliance with their contracts and could face costly renewal penalties after grace periods expire. FlexNet Operations makes it easy to avoid these problems.

Successful SaaS businesses know how to handle subscriptions. So, SaaS producers need to know when their customers’ contracts are expiring, and how to enable fast and easy renewals. Successful IoT businesses also rely on subscription models for devices, software and services. FlexNet Operations’ new subscription and recurring revenue engine helps producers ensure they’re prepared to win in SaaS and IoT economies.

ISVs are increasingly moving to subscription. Many don’t know how to do this well, or have the right systems and processes in place to make the transition. Intelligent device manufacturers are starting to monetize devices on a subscription basis. The device industry is moving away from huge, upfront payment models that can delay and disrupt customer purchasing decisions. FlexNet Operations is critical to support the transition to modern subscription and recurring revenue models – bolstering their long-term valuations in the process.


Podsystem Inc. Presents New Approach to Remote IoT Connectivity

There are a huge number of IoT devices, often roaming across countries and continents, that are located outside urban areas. This poses significant challenges to both the design and connectivity of the device, the biggest concern being that there is no room for error, as troubleshooting and maintenance of remote and roaming devices is complicated and costly.

As part of the Internet of Things North America conference in Chicago Illinois (April 13th – 14th 2016), Podsystem Inc. CEO Sam Colley presented “A Fresh Approach to Remote IoT Connectivity.” Sam addressed the challenges faced by remote IoT applications developers and discussed ways of overcoming them.

His presentation was based on an infographic which is available for download here. Alternatively, you can download the presentation with explanatory notes on each slide.

Our infographic “A Fresh Approach to remote IoT Connectivity” has been designed to provide IoT applications developers – particularly those focused on remote, roaming and mission critical applications – with information and advice on connectivity options, device design and future-proofing to prolong the lifespan of the application and avoid costly mistakes. The infographic covers the following:

Exponential growth of the IoT market, what factors have contributed to its growth? What is the revenue opportunity? What are the main drivers and developing markets? A summary of where the market has come from, growth statistics and what the future holds based on various industry analyst forecasts.

What are the different connectivity options available to developers of IoT applications? What types of applications are these different protocols best suited to? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these different technologies? Much of the hype around the IoT has been focused on consumer applications in smart homes for example, but the main revenue opportunity is in remote, roaming and mission critical applications e.g. industrial, transportation, healthcare.

What is the best connectivity option for remote, roaming and mission critical applications right now? What are the limitations? How will the growth in IoT traffic affect connectivity of these types of devices? An example based on one of the fastest growing IoT sectors: connected cars.

Why does the growth of the IoT require a fresh approach to connectivity? Many of the connectivity options available have evolved from supporting consumer applications (on smartphones and tablets for example) to supporting M2M and IoT devices. Explanation of the key differences between these types of applications and how these affect their connectivity.

Given the future growth of IoT apps and the current connectivity options available, how do I design IoT devices now that can be deployed in the field long term? Explanation of technologies available that allow connectivity of devices to be “future-proofed”. Advice on design features that should be incorporated into devices to allow future-proofing of connectivity.

Which connectivity partners can provide the right solutions to future-proof my IoT applications? An overview of the key features to look for in solutions provided by a potential connectivity partner.


AT&T Launches Nationwide LTE-M Network for Internet of Things

AT&T has completed deployment of its nationwide LTE-M network ahead of schedule. The network will enable a new generation ofInternet of Things (IoT) devices and applications.

The LTE-M network is now live across the U.S. on our nationwide 4G LTE network, following software upgrades. Our LTE-M deployment marks another step forward on our path to 5G and massive IoT. And the network is deployed with global, 3GPP standardized technology using licensed spectrum for carrier-grade security.

The company plans to deploy LTE-M across Mexico by the end of 2017 to create a North American LTE-M footprint covering 400 million people.

AT&T is also launching a full new suite of rate plans with LTE-M, with monthly plans starting for as little as $1.50 per month per device. Further discounts will be available for yearly and multi-year plans, as well as volume commitments. LTE-M modules will be available from our supplier for as low as $7.50 each, including a SIM card. That’s half the cost of the LTE Cat-1 module AT&T launched with our supplier in 2016. Plus, its current IoT starter kits with M14A2A modules will be software-upgradeable to LTE-M with an upcoming firmware update.

“Our nationwide LTE-M deployment is another example of AT&T’s continued investment and leadership in IoT,” said Chris Penrose, President, IoT Solutions, AT&T. “We can now reach new places and connect new things at a price that’s more affordable than ever before. Our LTE-M starter kit will also spur developers to open the doors to IoT innovation.”

Advantages of LTE-M over traditional IoT connectivity options include longer battery life (expected up to 10 years); better coverage for IoT devices underground and deep inside buildings; and reduced module size (as small as 1/6 the size of current modules).

LTE-M supports large-scale IoT deployments such as smart city services, smart metering, asset tracking, supply chain management, security and alarm monitoring and personal wearables. It has been embraced by leading global carriers. That helps build a broad base of ecosystem partners, devices and applications for global markets.


Systemone Enhances Health Care in Developing World via Vodafone Global IoT Technology

SystemOne, a connected health company developing data-driven healthcare solutions, has announced it is upgrading accessibility for medical devices and systems in the developing world. Using Vodafone’s global Internet of Things (IoT) SIM and Managed IoT Connectivity Platform, SystemOne will bring secure, consistent connections to healthcare facilities tackling some of the world’s most pervasive infectious diseases.

SystemOne has been connecting devices and labs in technologically-isolated places across the globe since 2012, capturing and transmitting critical data to inform and address public health, and better connect doctors and patients. Through its work with the Ministries of Health, diagnostic device makers, clinical workers and global healthcare organizations and funders, SystemOne has deployed systems to over 1,500 medical sites across 35 countries, working to manage diseases including Tuberculosis, HIV, Ebola and Zika, among others.

For example, in Uganda, SystemOne has worked to bring over-the-air accessibility to devices that test for Tuberculosis. Test results can now be sent to clinicians automatically, and patients are notified that the results are ready to review, reducing the time it takes to process test results from 60 days to just three days. This makes it possible for patients to receive treatment sooner and drastically reduce the potential for the disease to spread before the patient is treated.

Previously, SystemOne used traditional cellular SIM cards from multiple local mobile carriers to provide accessibility to medical devices, however, local network reliability proved challenging. Limited by inadequate network coverage, a lack of data analytics and roaming capabilities, and complex installation and billing processes, SystemOne turned to Vodafone IoT. The Vodafone global IoT SIM and Managed IoT Connectivity Platform provides a secure, scalable solution for managing connectivity anywhere in the world.

“SystemOne’s goal has always been to ensure that data moves faster than the diseases that impact the developing world,” said Chris Macek, Founder and CEO of SystemOne. “We’ve made inroads in improving healthcare in many developing countries through national-scale rollouts of connectivity for medical diagnostic devices. With Vodafone’s IoT technology and hardware, we can provide medical facilities with consistently reliable accessibility, ensuring clinicians can collect the data they need to make decisions that help save lives.”

“It’s our mission to transform lives and business by connecting every machine,” said Ivo Rook, Vodafone global director of IoT. “SystemOne’s work in the developing world speaks directly to that mission, as their work has an immense impact on the speed at which medical professionals receive information and treat patients in need around the world. SystemOne’s use of IoT with infectious disease can potentially revolutionize disease surveillance and response, while helping countries optimize the use and value of expensive medical devices.”

SystemOne recently began integrating Vodafone’s IoT network into its healthcare solutions, and will continue deploying improved accessibility in dozens of countries ranging from sub-Saharan Africa to Southeast Asia and South America, enabling reliable access to critical medical data in the developing world.


JeraSoft Intros IoT-based Billing Platform Software

JeraSoft, the innovative developer of carrier-grade billing platforms and VoIP solutions, has announced the release of a new version of the versatile billing platform – JeraSoft VCS 3.12! The new version provides users with new features, improved performance, and even greater ease-of-use.

The new version provides users with new features, improved performance, and even greater ease-of-use. The key feature of JeraSoft VCS 3.12 is the Internet of Things (IoT) services support. It enables users to bill any type of event within their business model gathered from multiple devices (sensors, controllers, vehicles, smartphones, machines, etc.) aimed at supporting home automation, health monitoring, or any other IoT service.

JeraSoft VCS 3.12.0 delivers the following main features Internet of Things (IoT) services support enabling VCS users to bill any type of event within their business model; CoreAPI methods for a real-time integration with 3rd party systems; Customer Dynamics Report tool for creating dynamic reports in terms of customer base growth, subscriptions and on-demand services usage, balance refills, etc.; and provisioning API that allows calling of external handlers triggered by events within billing platform. This will greatly simplify data synchronisation with 3rd party systems such as application servers, gateways, CRMs.

“The functionality of the JeraSoft billing platform continues to advance at a rapid pace,” says Suren Arustamyan, Chief Operating Officer at JeraSoft. “With this latest version 3.12, we are again improving the platform’s performance in general, while at the same time incorporating many new features requested by our fast-growing customer base. The launch of our IoT billing platform has moved us one step forward in developing multicomplex marketable products strengthened with thorough technical support.”

In addition to these developments, JeraSoft introduces CoreAPI optimized for performance and aimed at serving high-frequency requests. Development of mobile applications or customers’ portals as well as real-time data synchronization with 3rd party systems are the typical usage cases for CoreAPI.

Other key business benefit that can be achieved from using JeraSoft VCS 3.12 is the Customer Dynamics Report. Now users can create dynamic reports in terms of customer base growth, subscriptions and on-demand services usage, balance refills, etc.

Also, the JeraSoft team introduced Provisioning API, the whole new part of the platform that provides “Push Model” API. It allows calling of external handlers triggered by events within billing platform. Such approach will greatly simplify data synchronization with 3rd party systems such as application servers, gateways, CRMs.

The JeraSoft team invites users to participate in an upcoming webinar about changes and enhancements to JeraSoft VCS 3.12. Our application engineer will go through the important updates to this version.


U-blox Offers Ultra-Small RPMA Module

Today u-blox announced the availability of its ultra-small RPMA® (Random Phase Multiple Access) module, the SARA-S200. This product is the latest result of the strong partnership between Ingenu and u-blox which was announced in September 2016. In early 2017, u-blox began to offer its first-generation RPMA module, the NANO-S100, which is now followed by the smaller and cost-optimized SARA-S200.

The most obvious difference in the latest RPMA module is the reduced size. The SARA-S200 is 65 percent smaller than the NANO-S100. Measuring at just 16 mm by 26 mm by 2.3 mm, or the size of a small postage stamp, the SARA-S200 enables developers to integrate RPMA technology into a range of IoT devices with smaller form factors. Nevertheless, even with its reduced dimensions, the SARA-S200 still provides the same strong performance, in aspects like power consumption, which have made RPMA the technology of choice for connecting IoT devices.

Another key aspect of this module is that it uses the SARA footprint, which is u-blox’s most popular form-factor. Many 2G and 3G cellular modules with this identical footprint are already widely deployed in IoT devices throughout the world. By matching this form factor, swapping RPMA into these existing IoT devices, which in many cases are being forced to move to new connectivity solutions because of cellular network shutdowns, is greatly simplified.

Industries that can utilize this module include but are not limited to Smart Meter, Smart Building, Oil & Gas, and Agriculture. The smaller module size will also enable the integration of RPMA into a variety of wearable and tracking devices, many of which are currently under production with Ingenu’s ecosystem of IoT device partners.

This announcement marks another important step for Ingenu as it enables a wider variety of devices and applications to incorporate RPMA and operate on its Machine Network throughout the globe. Ingenu and u-blox personnel will be on hand to discuss the SARA-S200 during Internet of Things World in Santa Clara. The first prototypes of the SARA-S200 will be available to developers in June 2017.