AT&T has revealed it will supply network services and M2M expertise to support General Electric’s push into the market for so-called “Industrial Internet” solutions.
The deal represents a massive opportunity for AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA) given the size of General Electric (Fairfield, CT, USA), which generated revenues of about $150 billion last financial year, and the importance it has recently attached to M2M.
In late 2012, the company unveiled plans to begin using M2M technology in its wide range of industrial products.
The tie-up will mean that General Electric’s machines can be connected to the internet and tracked remotely using AT&T’s network and other resources.
The two companies are also to collaborate on developing new offerings for industrial products like electric vehicle chargers, lighting and engines, making use of AT&T’s Foundry innovation center and General Electric’s recently unveiled Predix software platform, which will be used to manage and service customers’ equipment.
General Electric now claims to provide 24 ‘Predictivity’ products – across a range of industry sectors – based on the Predix platform.
“GE’s vision of the Industrial Internet combined with our global network and leadership in machine-to-machine solutions are a powerful combination to help businesses realize the benefits of connected machines,” said Andy Geisse, Chief Executive Officer, AT&T Business Solutions.
The deal neatly positions AT&T for continued growth in the M2M market as it looks to offset the slowdown in its traditional business activities.
Last year, the company claims to have experienced a 38% increase in the number of M2M customers it serves.
Earlier this year, the operator won a connectivity deal with General Motors (Detroit, MI, USA) that appeared to come at the expense of chief rival Verizon Wireless (New York City, NY, USA), and it has also launched a range of home security and monitoring services in 2013.
The operator was also singled out for praise in a recent M2M report from Analysys Mason, a market-research company.
“AT&T received top scores in M2M parnerships, M2M R&D and M2M organizational structure,” said the authors. “AT&T has excelled in crafting its partnership strategy and internal organization. Its R&D focus – both in core research and solution development – is superlative.”