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Eight Dimensions to Consider for IoT Strategies


Their position gives them advantages like no other entity in providing value in the fast-growing 5G and IoT space. They have plenty of secure, highly reliable networks, device and data management expertise, and tremendous access to all types of data.

CSPs can tackle many of these issues, including lack of communication between systems, high fleet maintenance costs, poor inventory visibility and the reality of valuable data stuck in silos. CSPs are also nearly perfectly positioned because transport and logistics depends on wide-area coverage, mobility, and vehicle and traffic data. Plus, such companies have a need for high-speed, ubiquitous connectivity.

CSP offerings in this area in the past have been varied and often have covered the entire IoT value stack. Some take a connectivity approach, such as embedded. Others employ an end-to-end solution for functions like fleet management. Then there’s a platform approach, including V2X, which facilitates connected-vehicle-to-everything communication.

Now, CSP focus areas are shifting to take advantage of such opportunities. Because they can already collect massive amounts of location and movement information, CSPs are placing a notable emphasis on location data brokering and on becoming data exchange providers. Furthermore, there are future opportunities brewing in global embedded and infrastructure connectivity, as well as V2X services.

Some savvy operators are also looking at location-based marketing, using data from mobile devices to alert a consumer about an offering at a nearby business. With people and vehicle location data, CSPs can help local governments improve city planning and infrastructure. This data can also be used for road authorities and transport organizations on smart traffic initiatives, street lighting and parking.

For the field, people-location data sets can track and optimize service for utilities, manufacturers and public-facing agencies. Additionally, the potential exists for tremendous public safety improvements through CSP-provided data. Consider vehicle location, speed, driver behavior, environment data and video monitoring, for instance. All of this information can be used to improve search and rescue, emergency medical, fire and police efforts.

New Dimensions, New Successes

Whatever paths a CSP chooses to pursue—whether leveraging 5G to move up the value chain, monetizing data or creating vertical solutions—there will be hurdles. Expect gaps in technology, business models and industry expertise.

Gaining the right capabilities might require acquisitions. CSPs will also need to build trust and forge partnerships with key players in industries they want to pursue, especially if it’s not in an area in which they already have a strong presence.

Further, with global digitalization impacting nearly every business, new competitors will emerge. Even non-CSPs will get into the game. The trick is not to be “pushed off the ball” and relegated to handling connectivity alone, which, while critical, is not nearly as lucrative as higher-margin data services.

Such relegation would be a shame because CSPs possess unique strengths. Their position gives them advantages like no other entity in providing value in the fast-growing 5G and IoT space. They have plenty of secure, highly reliable networks, device and data management expertise, and tremendous access to all types of data.

There will always be obstacles, but these can be overcome. Seizing opportunity comes down to a CSP developing a clear and holistic strategic vision. If and when it does, new dimensions emerge that offer seemingly unlimited success.



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